Clearly the boys are enjoying themselves as Fripp’s one-step-at-a-time solo builds up the tension. Partly obscured by Boz and Ian’s vocals on the chorus, and Mel’s sax, Fripp goes Vesuvial ala studio version of Sailor’s Tale. His parting-shot sneaky Beatles quote tonight is Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds.
The good people of Peoria were imortalised in the Crimso universe following the release of Earthbound in the summer of 1972. What we didn’t know back then was that track, cunningly entitled, Peoria, was edited from Groon. It’s a joy to hear Mel’s fruity baritone solo gouging and harrowing the groove in this way - and if the shouts of encouragement from Boz and Ian are any indication to go by, the band thought so too.
On Earthbound the track faded out during Fripp’s comping but in this full version we get to hear Fripp’s nippy, darting runs for the first time, and a menacing syncopated set-up for Ian’s drum solo which begins with a finely focussed work-out on the snare before extending to the far corners of his kit. A riotous version of Silent Night on the climb-out of the drum solo concludes a delightfully skewed Groon.
Schizoid Man, including a fiery solo from the guitarist, fades out just as Boz gets into the final verse of the song.
The improv encore is interesting with Fripp laying down one of those wonderfully fluid, molten solos at the very start, before giving way to Boz’s scatting and Collins sax. When Boz comes back in for some more scatting he deploys an extended yodel-like variation on the patented Crimson distress bleat. The polar opposite contrasts with this and the following Cadence and Cascade is astonishing. Despite a truncated, vaguely wacky gig, the sound quality is great and admirers of this line-up should have no hesitation in adding this concert to their collection.