The creation (and re-creation) of virtual spatiality: Surround sound mixing in King Crimson’s back catalog box sets


The article analyzes surround mixing of King Crimson’s analog recordings. “Lizard,” “Larks’ Tongues in Aspic (Part 1),” “The Night Watch,” “Trio,” and “One Time” are analyzed using the theoretical perspectives of the music recording as representation and spatial design. There is a difference between live and studio recordings in surround: live recordings tend to be mixed according to the direct/ambient principle, while studio recordings are mixed according to the principle of direct-sound all around. Live recordings in surround can also often be understood as examples of documentarism, and studio recordings as examples of hyper realism. The spatial design of the surround mix tends to emphasize aspects of spatiality in the broad sense: where the recording can, for example, be interpreted as a landscape in sound.

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