vincentgallo.com:
 Writing

REVIEW OF THE KING CRIMSON LP,
‘THE CONSTRUKCTION OF LIGHT’
BY VINCENT GALLO, JUNE 5, 2000



I bought with my own money, well money I stole, my first Beatle album in 1967. The Beatles were the perfect band for a seven-year-old to get interested in music, rock music. By the way, I never liked hippies, I hate hippies, especially pot smoking hippies. Marijuana and socialism were the evils of the twentieth century.

In 1974 I bought with my own money, well money I stole, my first King Crimson album. It was their first album which had been released five years earlier, ‘Court of the Crimson King’. Almost twenty five years later I would use a track from the album titled ‘Moonchild’ in my masterpiece film ‘Buffalo 66’. The song and the album are modern classics. You know, in the sixties and early seventies people under twenty-five years old controlled only a small portion of the economy. They didn’t spend so much money on things that would be mostly insignificant in their lives. Bands could sell only a hundred thousand copies of an album and have major impact worldwide. When I say the word ‘impact’ I really just mean that if a person, a band, a thing never existed then the world would be different. Different in a real way, in a way that allowed other people in the future to move forward in their language and ideas to have capacity to think new thoughts.
Ronald Regan had impact. So did King Crimson.

When I started listening to King Crimson and some of the better progressive rock bands then, it really felt like the ideas, sensibilities, aesthetics and certainly the music were complex and very new and had a real relationship with the most interesting younger people of the time. Certainly all the work that I’ve done in my life was effected by my experience with music at that time, in a real way. These bands were not ‘trendy’. I’m sure Fripp, the guys in ‘King Crimson’, the band ‘Yes’ and certainly ‘Genesis’ had probably idolized several heroes from their childhood. Who knows who those heroes were, it doesn’t matter because they were able to transcend all their influences, even their whole ideas about being in a rock band.

When a mini-dwarf rich kid from Nashville like Harmony Korine flies first class and moves to New York City’s Soho in his ‘plush safe’ apartment, running around town quoting Godard with lines like, "Fuck the bourgeois", it’s insincere, it’s calculated, it’s unoriginal, and it’s the worst thing in the world, ‘trendy’. He already knows that he and his boring girlfriend Connecticut Chloe Sevigny are going to be on the cover of ‘The Face’. He knows he’ll get his run at The Angelica and be hip in Japan. But no one will ever make an important film because they saw ‘Gummo’ or ‘Donkey Boy’.

The only impact Harmony Korine will have will be on the lives of the girls he slipped drugs to, got stoned and raped while they were passed out. An autobiographical scenario he chose to include in his average screenplay ‘Kids.' I’ll fuck your ass Cary Woods.

The friends who I went to see King Crimson, Yes and Genesis concerts with, were the same friends who were hip enough to go with me to see The Ramones’ first gig in Buffalo, and the same friends who later dug ‘Spoony G’.

Where do records go now? Where are they? Who buys them? And why do they buy them? Did they listen to them? The whole thing? Or just the song on the radio. And why don’t they listen to them anymore? People do a lot of shopping. Shopping to shop, shop shopping, shopping shop, shippidy shop shopping. I had a storefront on Elizabeth Street one time, for one month. As a conceptual joke I put some items in the window for sale. A one-legged pair of jeans, an empty Evian bottle, a box of dirt, a rotten banana, and an unused, but unwrapped, condom. The store was mobbed and everything sold.

The new King Crimson album, ‘The Construkction of Light,’ will not have real impact. It is not the best King Crimson record. If I had to chose, I’d have to say I like the song ‘Into the Frying Pan’ best, even though it’s the most mainstream track. It’s weird when a band that existed outside of the mainstream does an album whose best track is almost a radio song. A radio song in the year 2000.

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