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Travis and Fripp

Live at Coventry Cathedral

Review by Gary Hill

This is a live album featuring Theo Travis and Robert Fripp. The music here is fairly ambient, much like Fripp’s Frippertronics. In fact, it features the Frippertronics. That means nothing moves fast. It also means the differences from piece to piece are subtle. That doesn’t mean it’s not interesting. In fact, it is quite a cool soundscape. It’s just hard for a music journalist like myself to call a lot of differences out from one number to the next.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2011  Volume 2 at

Track by Track Review
The Apparent Chaos of Stone

Combining Frippertronics with Theo Travis’ flute, this grows very gradually as a piece of beautiful texture and ambience. Around the four and a half minute mark guitar rises up in some showings of power, but it still moves languidly within this musical tapestry. There is a sense of slow and deliberate action here.

Field of Green
If the last track moved slowly, this one is purely glacial. In some ways it doesn’t differ a lot from the previous one, but it’s quite pretty. While the title might be “Field of Green,” in some ways this feels like a cold and lifeless type of beauty.
The Unquestioned Answer
While in some ways this isn’t all the different, it does get more jazz like in its sounds and rises toward noisier territory than that the two openers ever did.
Blue Calm
This cut doesn’t really go far, but rather is a slow moving piece of atmospheric (blue?) calm.
Duet for the End of Time
This moves and grows like small waves working their way out from the center. Rather than losing energy as they radiate out, though, these gain a bit of power with each pulse.
The Offering
Flute brings this one in and holds the bulk of the track. Some guitar rises up later and the saxophone brings some jazz to the table further down the road. This cut is extensive and covers a lot more musical territory than some of the other music here. It also has a lot more dynamic range than is featured on much of the rest of the set.
Angels in the Roof
While this is quite sedate, and in many ways sparse, there is a lot of drama to it. It resembles movie soundtrack music and feels a bit creepy at times. Still it is pretty.
A track that should be familiar to long time fans of Fripp, this is a modern interpretation of the piece from the first King Crimson album. While there are recognizable melodies, this is a very different, and quite intriguing, arrangement.
In many ways this is one of the slowest moving cuts here. It’s also one of the most dramatic and feels very ominous and nearly frightening at times. It’s a tasty one and a cool way to end the set. It rises up in some intriguing ways later and, at nineteen minutes in length, it is the longest piece on show here.
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