Thursday, September 04, 2008

A King Crimson Festival: F*O*C*K*ING AMAZING

ETA: Well, here's the first You Tube of the show in Moscow last night. Oh my God. This totally rocks. Watch the part during the break in the middle of the song, before the last chorus, where Julie and Ade interact. Wow. And listen to the crowd go nuts when they do that dual lead.

ETA 2: Well, they just added another You Tube of the same song - and while the sound quality is not nearly as good as the first, this one features the incredible Eric Slick:

So right now the Adrian Belew Power Trio are on a plane, heading back to America, after spending ten days in Kazan/Moscow, and as Eric told me, this trip was "freaking ridiculous!" meaning, it was unbelievably fantastic.

I got to email with him at 3:00 a.m. last night and I asked him how the show went.

"F*O*C*K*ing Amazing!" he replied.

Ze set list:

Here's Eric, getting his traditional pre-concert haircut, but this one was courtesy of Deborah, Pat Mastelotto's significant other:

Apparently, the huge, sold-out audience who witnessed this show felt the same (focking amazing!) but oh my God, Google translate gave me fits this morning though it is kind of funny:

First review:

"Genius one of the best guitars peace Adriana Balu (King Crimson with 80 - x to the present day) could not usidet on the ground and in the U.S. to dig out two young guys - brothers (Erik Slik-drums) and sister (Julie Slik - bass guitar) ( them all the way to 21 and 22 years respectively =). and where he found a Christmas tree-sticks? at first I thought that the children untold lucky. but was lucky not only them - Balu also received from the maximum. game these guys can not leave indifferent - because they are really masters. playing style, close to King Crimson, but quite another to arrange and play, they really create an impression of continuity of generations. Incidentally, Julie struck twice. if the world has at least one basistka still the same, let me look at the eyes! ")

Number Two:

"That group King Crimson has changed the whole course of rock music back in 70 - e, moving at an unprecedented level of the last composers' thinking, depth and stylistic synthesis of different strata, is beyond question. It turned out that even if today to collect half of the group King Crimson, repeatedly breaks, at one stage (yes, and even with the attendant every musical projects), it will turn out a huge King Crimson Festival, which took place on September 3 in the Club B-1. Maximum , Becoming a real parade of the most resourceful instrumentalists world. Drummer Pat Mastelotto and bass guitarist Trey Gunn, united with the Finnish "dzhimmi hendriksom bayan" Kimmo Pohonenom in the draft KTU, opened the concert hall immerse themselves in diverse polyphony at the junction of avant-garde, progressive-rock and meaningful ethno not trivial. The legendary violinist and pianist Eddie Dzhobson who is not on the scene within a 27 (!) Years, interrupted the silence on this concert by making a long solo network and colleagues in the group. Adrian White, one of the best guitarists of peace, made a solo project Adrian Belew Power Trio (apart from him in the band is composed virtuoso basistka and drummer, brother and sister, very young, but amazingly talented). Well, and finally the final chord, already deeply after midnight, 4 songs were performed gold composition of the actual repertoire King Crimson, including the title song from the album Red (1974) and insturmental from album Lark `s Tongues In Aspic. Here musicians joined by no less than landmark people - bassist Tony Levin, playing on the unique instrument chapman stick (symbiosis guitars and bass). Among the participants were not only the founder and ideologue Frippa Robert King Crimson, which according to organisers, at all invitations politely refused and not chosen from the USA on tour, even in Europe. But even despite this past King Crimson Festival has become one of those concerts that are really can not miss!" (Note from our author: Adrian "White" is's the Russian to American translation of Belew, obviously...)

Review Three:

"Then followed composition with the best guitarist the world - Adrian Balu. Satriani rest. Add to that he had a beautiful voice, akin vocalist Dream Theatre) At bass they had 21 - year old girl, a second drummer was her 20 - year old brother. Along with the legendary violinist, who after 27 years, held off the stage, and since December, began his tour, joined in this coherent improvisation - the words here do not help ..."

So yes, a very nice way to end an absolutely incredible tour...and to think that the trio heads to Europe for over three weeks next month...sigh...yet another trip I'll be missing but again, huge thanks to Andre Cholmondeley for keeping me in the loop and sending me the above photos...I'm sure I'll have many more courtesy of Julie and Eric once they return home tonight (where we are planning a huge pizza party...we figure they'll be in the mood for that big time)...anyway, I leave you with one last photo of those wacky kids in Moscow...I dub this photo "City of Tiny Lights"...

P.S. Gary has updated his blog!


Anonymous said...

so it was red, larks, elephant talk and thela? With Pat, Trey, Eddie, Julie, Eric and Tony?


RobinSlick said...

I know it was definitely the four songs you mention - Frame by Frame was also on the setlist - maybe it was cut because of time restraints or maybe they did do it because Red wa the encore (at least that was the plan). Julie played on Thela for sure; I'm wondering about Elephant Talk because after the show in Canada when she did not join Friends of KC, she remarked afterward that she could have played it because her approach to the tune would have complimented Tony's and not "overlapped"...but in emailing with Eric prior to the show, he wasn't sure if Julie would play at all because she opted out of rehearsals. But yes, I know for a fact she played Thela...there's a poor quality video of it already on line...the sound is so bad and distorted I couldn't post it but it's Thela and Julie alright - it's not on You Tube; it is on a private site.

More info than you want, I'm sure, but I am bored right now and wishing I could read Russian. There are tons of reviews coming out but Google translate mangles them.

RobinSlick said...

P.S. As far as I know, Trey did not join them at all but I could be wrong...I only know that he didn't rehearse, either, but like Julie, knows the songs backwards and forwards and could have easily opted out of rehearsals but shined on stage regardless.

Victor said...

The show was frigging amazing apart from a few moments such as the opening solo spot of some russian guitarist.
Although the show had been announced to start at 8:00 PM, it was delayed by an hour (which is sadly a normal practice here in Moscow).
During the intermission after the warm up, I was able to see Adrian (what a wonderful man!) waving to the most sharp-sighted members of the audience in a funny and simultaneously kind manner only Adrian is capable of. Also from reading your blog I could figure out it was nobody but Andrea himself, who was taking some photos from the corner of the stage.
KTU entered the stage approx. at 9 PM and delivered one of the most (if not the most) powerful, heavy and driving performances I've ever witnessed in my life! The surround sound really worked very well for them. And when Kimmo and Trey were playing phrases/riffs in unison with Trey covering the lower bottom of spectrum, they really sounded like an unstoppable monster! My father was initially skeptical about the whole affair (since I'm a bigger KC fan than he is) but he was completely blown away right from the start.
A short intermission and announcement from Sasha Cheparukhin followed and then Eddie Jobson entered the stage. He played an instrumental piano composition (incorporating a little piece of "Carrying no Cross" from the second UK album) and then a violin solo. Knowing it was his second stage appearance after a long break the whole affair seemed to be very intimate and fragile with audience trying to be as kind, polite and supportive as possible. Really who would have thought he'd be back on stage ever? And even more, in Russia? Anyway, everyone just seemed to be happy Eddie's back to performing live again and promised to provide nice reception to UKZ if they ever come to Russia in Dec/Jan.
Another intermission followed with ABPT entering the stage not long afterward. Adrian seemed to be in a very uplifted mood and interacted with the crowed a lot. I'm not a huge ABPT fan myself, but I recognized some of Adrian's solo tunes (I believe from Side One). Overall the band sounded very KC'ish but with more emphasis on steady groove and Adrian's playing (obviously).
Now onto the rhythm section (I guess this is the most interesting part for you, Robin!) :) To keep it short: completely mind blowing! Julie was a bit inaudible at the beginning but then the balance was set up right and she just blew the audience away with her playing. Highlight: Julie's extended solo while Adrian was busy changing the broken string. Being a drummer myself (but not really professional) I was really interested to see Eric's playing and I was amazed at his time-keeping and how fluent he is behind the drum kit. I was able to learn a couple of things too (I was really intrigued by his manner of holding the sticks, very relaxed yet powerful drumming) since I was standing not too far from him. All in all, I can only complement you on being such a wonderful mother, Robin!
After another short break ABPT were joined on stage by Tony Levin and Pat Mastelotto. They played Thela which sounded a tiny bit messy to me (funny highlight: Tony losing one of the two funk fingers) although still very much fun. Then Julie left the stage and Elephant Talk followed with Eddie accompanying the rest of band on violin (ET played on violin?! OMG!) mostly by plucking the strings. LTiA pt. 2 featured a small trainwreck by Eddie (he proceeded onto the ascending bridge section too early, I think). Nighlight: Eddie Jobson singing the main "heavy" riff with a huge smile on his face before breaking into violin solo.
Encore: Red. Amazing deliverance. The whole band played very tightly and glued: the piece sounded as it had been originally composed to be played on guitar and violin! I remember the surrounding audience going completely ecstatic with the first chords of it (so did I!).
All in all, a wonderful evening, completely mind-blowing performances from all parties involved. Hopefully we'll see and hear more of that! The amazing David Cross band comes to mind, for example.

I didn't take any pictures or recordings of the event, but I'm sure you'll be able to find plenty of them on the web.

The word "white" can be transcripted from Russian into Latin/English as "belij" :)

Anonymous said...

thanks for the summary Victor!


RobinSlick said...

Victor, this is amazing! Thank you so much. You realize I'm going to have to cut and paste that into my blog post tomorrow, too, just in case people don't read the comments section here and miss it. Seriously - you have no idea how much I appreciate your comments. Ha ha - well, maybe you do.

Hi, Martyn!

Kimberly M. Wetherell said...

Wow! This has been such a fun vicarious trip to Russia with the Slick Family Players!


Anonymous said...

Dear Robin,
I've been both to Kazan' festival and Moscow performance two days ago - it was absolutely amazing. The Moscow gig was the best live gig I've ever seen - Adrian was beyond any praise and Julie and Eric were unbelievable.
Any friend - musician or not - who I talked to told me: it was ****ing amazing!
And Lark's Tongues in Aspic - with Eddie Jobson!!! Mastelotto and Eric were playing together - best and most inventive drumming ever!


Dan said...

Dear Robin, just found your blog accidentally - googling the KC festival.
I was to the Moscow show, it was AMAZING. Three hours and a half of perfect happiness - and the Trio was the best part of it. Eric and Julie were INCREDIBLE. And they fit in with Belew brilliantly.
Thank you!
I wish they came back as soon as they can, on a separate tour, pleeeeeze.
(and, yes, the Beatles are the best group of the XXth century. Undebatable)

All the best,