King Crimson – 6th November 2016 – Teatro degli Arcimboldi, Milan

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Q. Where does music come from?
A. Where was the world before it was made? Find that place and you will find Music. (Robert Fripp)

 An artistic discovery 
occurs each time as a new and unique image of the world, a 
hieroglyphic of absolute truth. It appears as a revelation, as a 
momentary, passionate wish to grasp intuitively and at a stroke all 
the laws of this world — its beauty and ugliness, its compassion and 
cruelty, its infinity and its limitations. The artist expresses these 
things by creating the image, sui generis detector of the absolute. 
Through the image is sustained an awareness of the infinite: the 
eternal within the finite, the spiritual within matter, the limitless 
given form. (Andrei Tarkovsky)
“We're all lonely for something we don't know we're lonely for. 
How else to explain the curious feeling that goes around feeling like 
missing somebody we've never even met?” (D.F. Wallace)

I don’t the place where music come from. Yet. I know it moves me to another place, closer to that somebody I have never met or at least to its reflection.

My purpose for this concert is not to listen (or to listen as little as possible) anything produced by the new line up. I want to arrive unprepared, so the music can again surprise me.

I have one thing in mind. Robert Fripp said in a video that no matter when a piece of music was composed you can always approach it like it is something new. And in fact music is something that takes place in a moment of time. It begins, it exist and it ends. It is what you can call an event.

I arrive early at the venue. I spot a few people outside and I met a couple of guys I know. They are true prog-heads. They consider King Crimson an institution and they know an awful lot about them. I discovered KC in 1995 when I was in high school. Thrak just came out back then and it was my personal version of grunge back then. Yes I listened also to Nirvana, but I found the same urgency in that album too… And then my favourite album was TKOL in 1999. I listened to that album until I lost it.

So I am not a veteran that’s for sure. I don’t own all the albums or any of the box set, but I think I have to be here tonight. While I am waiting for the beginning a couple of announcements explain when it is the right moment to take photos. The request is to live ‘in the moment’ and to be here with our minds, our ears and our eyes on what we have in front of us. I really thank for this. Even if the people around me gets annoyed a bit I think it is great to just concentrate on the ‘event’ and forget for an evening to take another useless bad photo or video.

When the musicians enters the stage I am projected back in time. I might as well be in the Habsburg empire, in a theatre in Vienna and an opera is starting. An alternate futuristic version of 19th century. They even tune up.

After the tuning up, the beginning is a massive rhythmic illusion relentlessly driven by Mastelotto, Stacey and Harrison aka the “front line”. I know that the party is going to be fun. And wild too.

I am almost completely strange to the first 7-8 tracks but there’s no issue here. I have a 20-something girl in front of me constantly head banging. Forget about labels and expectations, this is rock, but also something else. It is like in my alternate reality I am listening to chamber music but with the ears in 21st century (no pun intended). There is no time as I feel all this music has become a classical repertoire (in the best sense of the world classical). But also new at the same time. Why can’t complex music be also popular?

This concert is indeed a party, a tour de force, a travel to unknown places, dark corridors and magnificent halls.

And this band is probably one of the few that can bear the title of being ‘indie’. No record label, marketing, strategies. Only music and the artist. No filler content to replace the lack of ‘real’ content. I am probably witnessing something unique.

Red lights on Starless middle section. What is our grey hope? And then the ending…

“Nothing he’s got he really needs
Twenty first century schizoid man.

We are still looking for what we really need, may this question be answered one day…for tonight the promise I to see this band again.

The magnificent seven: Collins, Fripp, Harrison, Jakszyk, Levin, Mastelotto, Stacey

Set 1
Tuning Up
Hell Hounds of Krim
Pictures of a City
Cirkus
Fracture
The Letters
Sailor’s Tale
Peace: An End
Radical Action (To Unseat the Hold of Monkey Mind)
Meltdown
VROOOM
The Court of the Crimson King
Easy Money
Radical Action II
Level Five

Set 2
Fairy Dust
Lizard (‘The Battle of Glass Tears – Part i: Dawn Song’)
Indiscipline
Epitaph
The ConstruKction of Light
Red
A Scarcity of Miracles
The Talking Drum
Larks’ Tongues in Aspic, Part Two
Starless

Encore:
Banshee Legs Bell Hassle
21st Century Schizoid Man

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