Beat (album)

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Studio album by King Crimson
Released June 18, 1982
Recorded 1982
Genre Progressive rock, experimental rock, math rock, new wave
Length 35:19
Label E.G.
Warner Bros./E.G.
Virgin Records
Producer Rhett Davies
King Crimson chronology
Three of a Perfect Pair
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[1]
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars[2]

Beat is the ninth studio album by the British rock band King Crimson, released in 1982. The halftone quaver image on the cover was designed by artist Rob O'Connor.

The Beat Generation[edit]

According to the Trouser Press Record Guide, the album focused on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the publication of the novel On the Road by Jack Kerouac.[3] The album makes several references to the writings of the Beat Generation:

  • "Neal and Jack and Me" is the track most obviously inspired by Beat writers. The 'Jack' of the title is Beat writer Jack Kerouac, and the 'Neal' of the title is Kerouac's friend Neal Cassady. The song was released as a b-side to "Heartbeat". The song picks up where the album Discipline left off, with interlocking guitars playing in 5/4. Guitars frequently play in polyrhythms with 5/4 over 7/8.
  • "Heartbeat" is also the name of the book written by Carolyn Cassady, Neal's wife, about her experiences with the Beats.
  • "Sartori in Tangier" also derives its title from Beat influences including the Jack Kerouac novel Satori in Paris, and the city of Tangier in Morocco, where a number of Beat writers resided and which they often used as a setting for their writing. Writer Paul Bowles was associated with the Beats, and his novel The Sheltering Sky, which provided the title for a track on King Crimson's previous studio album, Discipline, is partly set in Tangier. The song was first released as a b-side to the Heartbeat 12" single in 1982. It is entirely instrumental with the intro performed by Tony Levin on the Chapman Stick.
  • "Neurotica" shares its title with Neurotica, a Beat-era magazine.[4][5]
  • "The Howler" refers to the Beat poem Howl by Allen Ginsberg, which Fripp suggested to Belew as inspiration for the lyrics.

Track listing[edit]

Lyrics by Adrian Belew, music by Belew, Bill Bruford, Robert Fripp, and Tony Levin, unless otherwise indicated.

Side one
No. Title Length
1. "Neal and Jack and Me"   4:22
2. "Heartbeat"   3:54
3. "Sartori in Tangier" (instrumental) 3:54
4. "Waiting Man"   4:27
Side two
No. Title Length
5. "Neurotica"   4:48
6. "Two Hands" (lyrics: A. Belew and Margaret Belew) 3:23
7. "The Howler"   4:13
8. "Requiem" (instrumental) 6:48


King Crimson



Year Chart Position
1982 Billboard Pop Albums 52


Year Single Chart Position
1982 "Heartbeat" Billboard Mainstream Rock 57

In popular culture[edit]

The Chapman Stick introduction to "Sartori in Tangier" is featured in the first scene of the premiere of the MTV show The Maxx.


  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Rolling Stone review
  3. ^ "King Crimson". Trouser Press. Archived from the original on 4 August 2005. Retrieved July 5, 2005. 
  4. ^ "Neurotica". Landesmania. Archived from the original on 29 April 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-20. 
  5. ^ Chapter 10: Battling the Social Neurosis. The Culture of Spontaneity (University of Chicago Press). Retrieved 2009-03-20. 

External links[edit]