King Crimson | The Vic | Rock, Pop, Etc, Fall Arts | Chicago Reader

King Crimson 18+ Agenda Early Warnings (Music) Soundboard Recommended Image

When: Thu., Sept. 25, 8 p.m., Fri., Sept. 26, 8 p.m. and Sat., Sept. 27, 8 p.m. 2014

King Crimson mastermind Robert Fripp has been constantly renewing his groundbreaking prog-rock outfit for nearly 50 years, always staying miles ahead of the curve, and last year he resurrected it yet again. King Crimson’s 1969 debut, In the Court of the Crimson King, not only blew minds but also destroyed pretty much every preconception about what a rock band could be. Fronted at the time by Greg Lake (later of Emerson Lake & Palmer), King Crimson blended psychedelica, heavy metal, free jazz, and classical music, inspiring and terrifying their peers and establishing a whimsical but meticulous blueprint for all progressive rock to come. Over the years Fripp has been the band’s only constant member, and by 1974’s Red, he’d pared down the lineup to a power trio, shedding the flutes and fairy-tale concepts in favor of knotty, heavy-handed math metal (meanwhile Yes and Genesis were still writing rock operas). The band’s transformations have continued through five breakups and regroupings, as well as more lineup shuffling than most folks can be bothered to follow—more than 20 musicians have passed through, all of them among the best players on the planet. Fripp got the band back together in 2013 after a five-year hiatus, and this time he’s using a triple-drummer lineup, with Pat Mastelotto, Gavin Harrison, and Bill Rieflin (all of whom have been in King Crimson at some point in the past). The band won’t write or perform any new material; instead, Fripp will reinterpret old Crimson songs with the three drummers acting as the music’s center of gravity. —Luca Cimarusti

Price: $90-$150

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