21st Century Schizoid Band – Official Bootleg Volume One (2002)

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21st Century Schizoid Band were a King Crimson alumnus group formed in 2002.

The name derives from the famous song “21st Century Schizoid Man” from the first King Crimson album, In the Court of the Crimson King. The initial band featured Mel Collins on saxophones, flute and keyboards, Michael Giles on drums, Peter Giles on bass, Ian McDonald on alto saxophone, flute and keyboards, and Jakko Jakszyk on guitar and vocals. All but Jakszyk had previously been members of King Crimson in its early years. Ian Wallace, another former Crimson member from that same period, replaced Mike Giles in early 2003 after the band’s Japanese tour. Further international touring followed in 2003/04.

The band played live with sets concentrating on compositions from King Crimson’s first four albums and other works from the band members’ back catalogues, including McDonald and Giles. They have released four albums, mostly of live work but including newer and/or recent compositions, such as Ian McDonald’s “Let There Be Light” (from his solo album Driver’s Eyes) and “Catley’s Ashes,” a Jakszyk instrumental which later appeared on his solo album The Bruised Romantic Glee Club (2006).

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The band has been inactive since 2004; with members based in different countries, touring proved to be logistically and financially difficult. The possibility of performing again in 2005 was considered following offers from festivals, possibly with Guy Evans (of Van der Graaf Generator) on drums to replace Wallace who had other commitments, but the idea was abandoned. Wallace’s death in February 2007 would seem to have closed the lid on the band for good.

Jakszyk and Collins went on to record as a trio with founding Crimson guitarist Robert Fripp (and with rhythmic support from fellow members Tony Levin and Gavin Harrison) on the Scarcity of Miracles album in 2011. This was followed in 2013 by the announcement of a new King Crimson formation including all five, plus two additional members. (by wikipedia)

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The single-CD Official Bootleg, Vol. 1, available principally at the group’s shows and through their website, is comprised of the first official recordings by the 21st Century Schizoid Band. Cut immediately prior to their inaugural tour, it features the original lineup — Michael Giles, Peter Giles, Ian McDonald, Mel Collins, and Jakko Jakszyk — doing new versions of songs from across the King Crimson repertory, from 1969 through 1972. The renditions here are less bold than those the group would subsequently lay down, although McDonald, Collins, and the Giles brothers get into an interesting and entertaining funk-like groove in the last section of “Ladies of the Road,” and there are some interesting lyrical excursions on “Formentara Lady,” and they sound as though they’re having a good time doing finely articulated versions of “A Man and a City” and “Catfood.” “Court of the Crimson King” starts off as an instrumental, but the one new alumnus of the group, Jakko Jakszyk, acquits him well on the vocals when the verses get picked up in the second half, and the others provide surprisingly good backing vocals at this late date in their respective careers. The group’s later live performances on CD and DVD are intrinsically more interesting, but this release is not to be ignored. (by Bruce Eder)

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Personnel:
Mel Collins (saxophone,, flute, Keyboards, Background vocals)
Michael Giles (drums)
Peter Giles (bass, background vocals)
Jakko Jakszyk (guitar, vocals)
Ian McDonald (saxophone, flute, Keyboards, background vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. A Man A City (Fripp/Sinfield/McDonald/Lake/Giles) 8.27
02. Catfood (Fripp/Sinfield/McDonald) 4.53
03. In The Court Of The Crimson King (McDonald/Sinfield) 7.28
04. Formentera Lady (Fripp/Sinfield) 12.45
05. Ladies Of The Road (Fripp/Sinfield) 7.17
06. I Talk To The Wind (McDonald/Sinfield) 5.25
07. 21st Century Schizoid Man (Fripp/McDonald/Lake/Giles/Sinfield) 7.38
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