HiRez Poll King Crimson - Starless and Bible Black [DVD-A/BDA]


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  • 1: Poor Surround, Poor Fidelity, Poor Content

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Forum Curmudgeon
Staff member
Since 2002/2003
Mar 2, 2002
Please post your thoughts and comments on the DVD-A release from King Crimson. (n):phones(y)

KC Starless.jpg

1. The Great Deceiver
2. Lament
3. We'll Let You Know
4. The Night Watch
5. Trio
6. The Mincer
7. Starless and Bible
8. Black
9. Fracture

Bonus tracks:

Law of Maximum Distress (parts 1 and 2)
The Mincer improv
Dr. Diamond
Guts on my Side


- 5.1 Lossless Surround Sound, DTS 5.1 Surround Sound mix
- Album new mix - High Resolution Stereo
- Album original mix - High Resolution Stereo

Live Video footage from New York 1973

9 additional live recordings including:
Law of Maximum Distress (parts 1 and 2)
The Mincer improv
Dr. Diamond
Guts on my Side

Single edits

Radio adverts
First, I have to say the SABB was not one of my favorites - and I think that at the time when I first heard this back in 1974, besides the limited audio capabilities of my college dorm room stereo, it just sounded a bit too ragged -it was a disappointing follow-up to my all time fave Larks Tongue.

Well the postman delivered the package yesterday that has completely changed my mind albeit 40 years later. Kudos to Steven Wilson for a mix that is a revelation. The standout element for me is the recorded sound of the drum kit - no nonsense, no effects, noise gates, overwhelming reverb - just the sound of an unadulterated drum kit - miked perfectly and played the "shit out of" by Bill Bruford. The interplay between John Wetton and Bruford as revealed here is nothing short of spectacular. Tons of great bonus material. This was the title I was least looking forward too (relatively speaking) and so far the one that has impressed me the most. Bring on Discipline - I can't wait! A 10.
I was a little late getting into KC, and if I recall correctly S&BB was the first of their albums that I bought, and so it's always had a bit of a special place in my collection. The 73/74 era Crimson is my fave and I was really looking forward to this one. It did not disappoint at all...just super. I totally agree with elmer above in regards to the sonics...drums sound fab and I heard things I never heard before, lots of little subtle things that were barely audible before.

The little teaser from the Night Watch live album is really making me want that one...soon. And USA, both preferably....this band was a monster live.
This was the first King Crimson album that I heard, so for me this one is special too.

I'm really familiar with this album (in fact all the KC albums!). I'm surprised (in way I'm not) at how many little nuances come through in the 5.1 mix - I'm hearing things I've not heard before. As said above the drums sound fabulous. Also listen to Wetton's bass in We'll Let You Know, Fracture - hey all the tracks really! The drums and bass are really tight - Bruford and Wetton at their peak.

Fracture is probably my all time favourite KC track. Listen out for someone yelling out a key change to "F" at one point - Awesome!

Also Trio and The Mincer sound great as up-mixes... Why can't the Silverline-surround-o-matics sound as superb as this. These also sound better (to me) than The Devil's Triangle up-mix.

I also like the menu/layout/authoring - good job guys.....(y)
Fracture is probably my all time favourite KC track. Listen out for someone yelling out a key change to "F" at one point - Awesome!

Also Trio and The Mincer sound great as up-mixes... Why can't the Silverline-surround-o-matics sound as superb as this. These also sound better (to me) than The Devil's Triangle up-mix.

I also like the menu/layout/authoring - good job guys.....(y)

Have to agree teh upmix on this is not as obvious as the Devils Triangle, Overall the sound is much more cosistent that Poseidon between upmixed and trumixed.

Have to listen to this a few more times but i think teh vote is going to be high
This was my least favorite KC release when I bought the LP in the 70s, and most of the tracks still strike me as progressive-rock noodling.

The MC mix is excellent as usual for the King Crimson discs (even the fake-surround "upmixes"), and the hi-res audio is stellar.

I'd say 5 or 6 for the music and 10 for the mix, so about a 7.
Going way back to Temple U in 1982 with my friend T playing this for me!!!
This was the first KC I ever LISTENED TO-and probably the first KC LP I bought (which now I think is weird-wouldn't have I been into Discipline or Beat since they were from those years?...Oh , well).

Alienating some of my friends too was part of the process("How can you listen to this sh*t?" asked me Billy, unknowingly...and then you wonder if they are REALLY your friends..).

Mind you, I remember going to Stereo Warehouse (one of those GREAT, now defunct Hi-Fi/record Stores, where there was a guy who used to PLAY the LPs for you-no touchy touchy!)
in '81 and having el Flaco play "Discipline" for me, after me telling him I was into Yes and Prog...he SHOULD have warned me that it was their musical opposite equivalent, maybe then history would've been different-but then , I digress....he was "YOU'RE GONNA LIKE THIS"..,erm... NO!

Maybe there had to be some College "partying" before my mind was able to process this stuff- you never know....

OK, these KC mixes are so spectacular and their music is SO DENSE that it's impossible to;
1- be unbiased
2- be able to write a comprehensive review after such a short time since their release.

On top of that, several of us (from the previous posts) had this as our starting point regarding KC that it'll always have a "special" place in our psyche.

Music; a 10 for me.
Oh, my!!...The cojones on these "Limeys"(No offense to the English- I am a "spick" myself). Releasing an LP from mostly (recorded) LIVE stuff-WITH EXTRA OVERDUBS on the studio- and one not being able to tell the difference!
And there's this song in there called "Fracture" that will do precisely that to your cranium while listening to it! (If you're a guitar player it'll do that to your ego too!!!)

Mix: another 10 for me.
Nuance galore.
Clear Sound- this Lp was always a bit "dark" sounding one...now you can hear EVERYTHING.
The most difficult thing to pull on a mix is to have the effects be transparent, yet be present in the mix.
They do not depart too much from the original mix, but ,at the same time; HOW can you actually create a 5.1 version of a gtr coming from RR with delay on the other channels and making it sound like it was natural?
ALL of the recent 5.1 KC remixes are like this- they should be an Industry Reference for all who want to create an effective Surround mix.

Huge kudos to Mr. Wilson and Mr. Jakko (sorry, can't spell his last name!)

Have listened to it at least 3 times and keep discovering new stuff

So, it's not only that I've listened to this hundreds of times; now I got it in Surround to pick apart and marvel and play some other hundreds of times...

Spectacular Job, boys..we love ya!!!

I'll keep posting after I listen to it again several times...

But , for now..:smokin

I gave it a 10. Magnificent. Everything I could have wanted from a surround mix of this album, which is my favorite in the KC catalogue.
A solid release. Not one of my faves, but it was an enriching experience hearing this in surround and I'll revisit this again soon.
Music sort of building toward 'Red', about an 8+ for me on the music but the mix is great...including the SW Easy Money in DTS which is about the most active use of the surrounds on the disc. The extra bits that are included are the most extensive and varied of any of the DVD-A releases to date, IMO. Great package. John S.
Less toys to play with than other KC albums, but a brilliant SW job nonetheless. You can fill a room with sound, but still keep that vocal in the center channel. SW should take every other professional surround mixer to camp somewhere before they're ever allowed to release another title. 10.
Turns out the live "Easy Money" bonus track DOES EXIST in MLP 5.1!
It's Group 3.
Neil, why would it be on the disc but listed on the menu as DTS only? confused but happy. :banana:
Yep - its there in Title 3 (or group 3)... as 96/24 MLP!!!! Cool.... The DTS is in Title 9...

The track is from "The Night Watch" disc.....
Terrific surround mix! "Fracture" is particularly stunning. Every one of these KC releases has been an absolute treat. "Beat" and "Three of a Perfect Pair" please...

Finally got a chance to sit down and listen to Starless and Bible Black

Wellllllllllllll..........................Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaamn this one really............................IS AWESOME!!!!!!

Best Improvising of them all so far...........Great bass and Drums, great guitar stuff but looooooooooooooved the improvising. SNood has not given a 10 so far on these but this one well is a 10er and still have RED to go. This might be my Fave if RED does not knock it off.

Will be doing RED next weekend. Drums were awesome here and the bass was great..........

Easy Money 5.1 was awesome toooooooooooo

Hey Snood, I always am a little suspicious of people who speak of themselves in the third person, but , for Snood I'll make an exception...I enjoy Snood's posts and I suspect Snood does it just to be different (...Snood is probably an Aquarius.. ;) ) ...and besides, I love The Knack's first LP...which is the only one I have ever listened to...

ANYWAY... just as a pointer, if Snood enjoyed KC's improv in this disc , he will literally have an orgasm when he gets the LTIA , The Road to Red AAANNNNDD the Starless box set...there's SO MUCH stuff in those CD's improv-wise , that it'll take him months or YEARS to listen to it...I have all three of them and keep listening and discovering stuff everytime ("....uhhhmmm...which one was the last one I listened to???...DON'T CARE!!!")