"Providence" is steaming along.
And now the gorgeous "Starless" and the aching, longing, weeping introductory instrumental guitar line over the mellotron strings. On this smoky vocal JW went from singing to becoming a singer, in my view. Mel Collins' soprano sax snakes around the vocal line and then the weeping guitar, knowing regret but also acceptance. The song falls out and the instrumental begins over Bill's 13/8 figure. Ian McDonald jumps in on the fast 13 riff and the team stomps out to the end.
The song part of "Starless" is Crimson's swan song for the 1970s. This is the death of a certain kind of innocence which continued the optimism of the 1960s, the acknowledgement of this loss, and Crimson's final statement on it. The instruments state their varying positions on what this means to the individuals represented by them.
If "Starless" represents the end of one theme, "Red" is the beginning of another. Although Crim heavy metal began with "Schizoid" and continued on through "Larks'", this piece marks a qualitative shift in the function of Crim metal, the implication of which continues to resonate in Crim even today. After "Red" Crimson ceased to exist for the next nearly seven years, but the effects of this music continued during Crim's absence.
Now for a through-listen.
The third album of this period is now squernoed flat. At this point the group were actually ready to begin the work it had begun two years before, with two more men.
Search Robert Fripp's diary archive.