King Crimson

Essential Albums

  • In the Court of the Crimson King (Expanded Edition)

Artist Playlists

About King Crimson

King Crimson simultaneously defined and transcended prog rock. Fiercely original guitar stylist Robert Fripp has been the only constant through the British band’s many evolutions, always shepherding the group to something new. Their 1969 debut, In the Court of the Crimson King, blew minds with its unprecedented mix of hard-rock, jazz, avant-garde, and classical influences, with a pre-ELP Greg Lake’s rich, larger-than-life voice delivering lyricist Peter Sinfield’s wildly imagistic lyrics. With constantly shifting lineups through the ’70s, King Crimson pursued an uncompromisingly unique sound, sometimes relying heavily on improvisation. They split after the 1974 proto-metal touchstone Red, but Fripp rebooted the band for three funky, polyrhythmic, New Wave-influenced ’80s albums fronted by Bowie/Talking Heads sideman Adrian Belew. Variations of the Belew-fronted lineup convened in the ’90s and 2000s. In 2013, a new Crimson with new singer Jakko Jakszyk began touring, bringing fans tunes from all across the band’s career for the first time.

London, England
November 1968

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