"Neal and Jack and Me" is the track most obviously inspired by Beat writers. The 'Jack' of the title is Beat writer Jack Kerouac, while 'Neal' is Kerouac's best friend Neal Cassady. Besides On the Road, the lyrics make references in French to other significant Kerouac works; Les Souterrains, Des Visions du Cody and Sartori a Paris. The song was released as a b-side to "Heartbeat". Musically it picks up where the album and songDiscipline left off, with Fripp and Belew's dueling guitars weaving in and out of patterns in 5
4 and 7
8 time signatures.
"Heartbeat" is also the name of a book written by Neal Cassady's wife Carolyn about her experiences with the Beats.
"Sartori in Tangier" derives its title from 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. The Frippertronics intro is lifted directly from the beginning of "Hååden Two" off Fripp's 1979 solo album Exposure.
"The Howler" refers to the Beat poem Howl by Allen Ginsberg, which Fripp suggested to Belew as inspiration for the lyrics. The 15
8 guitar riff heard halfway through the song can be likened to the one Belew played on the Tom Tom Club single "Genius of Love" in 1981.