Artist/ Band: King Crimson
Title: In The Court Of The Crimson King: 40th Anniversary Edition
Label: Inner Knot
Year of Release: 1969/2009
Offical Artist/ Band Link

The Review:

40 years ago King Crimson released their ground breaking debut, In The Court Of The Crimson King. Since them it’s been re-issued on cd in 1989 (Definitive edition), 1999 (30th Anniversary edition) and 2004 (Original Master Edition). I feel that the 40th Anniversary Robert Friip/ Steven Wilson is the “Definitive Edition” mainly due to it being remixed, remastered & expanded format. It’s also been release as a 2cd, cd/dvd-A and for the true collector, a 5cd/dvd box set. I’ll be talking mostly about the cd/dvd set, which I received. On the second disc (cd or dvd) has the album remixed in 5.1 surround sound, which for those with high end systems can enjoy either again or for the first time, the glory of this album. .

I don’t know a lot of the technical side of how the album was recorded and remixed, only that there’s a significant improvement over the last 2 editions especially on “Moonchild”. They took out, from the original release, the improv section. There are some alternative takes on “I Talk To The Wind” (both as a Fripp/McDonald duo version and a alternate take). Both are quite interesting. “Epitaph” is available as a “backing track”. I’m not sure exactly what that means but it shows the listener the evolution of the song. The “Wind session” later becomes the intro part to “21st Century Schizoid Man. I have to be honest and say these bonus tracks should have been on a separate disc to preserve the continuity of the proper album.

On the second disc tracks 1-5 are from the 2004 edition. There’s an early instrumental recording of “21st Century Schizoid Man”. Tracks are from BBC Radio 1 Track 9-10 is from the original vinyl single. For details on the box set, you can refer to the In The Court Of The Crimson King wikipedia page.

It’s a tough decision because it seems bands are always remastering their albums several times. I feel depending on your listening experience, amateur (such as myself) or professional (audiophile) will dictate you purchasing decision. For newcomers to the band, the 40th Anniversary Edition will be recommended.

Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on January 24th, 2010


CD - 2009 Stereo Mix:

01. 21st Century Schizoid Man
02. I Talk To The Wind
03. Epitaph
04. Moonchild
05. The Court Of The Crimson King

Bonus tracks:

06. Moonchild (Full Version)
07. I Talk To The Wind (Duo version)
08. I Talk To The Wind (Alternate mix)
09. Wind Session


  • Original album mix (2004remaster edition)
  • 2009 Stereo album mix
  • Cd Bonus tracks and alternate takes album

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