'lizard' - king crimson's third studio album and second recording of 1970, was, like its predecessor 'in the wake of poseidon', the product of a studio band. it was also the first crimson album for which robert fripp provided all of the music. remarkably self-contained and sounding somewhat atypical for a king crimson album - even by the standards of a band that rarely sounded similar from album to album, 'lizard' is an often overlooked and under-appreciated gem from their early years. certainly at the time of release, anyone expecting an extension of the soundscapes introduced and explored on the band's earlier two albums was in for a surprise. 'lizard' featured a lighter, more delicate sound than the earlier albums - an approach perhaps necessitated by an extended instrumental lineup. the expanded range of instruments allowed for intricately interwoven instrumental passages - with fripp's guitar and tippett's piano pleasingly to the fore - and this combination, along with the prominence afforded to mel collins and the guest players on the album's main title 'suite', led some to believe that fripp was guiding crimson towards the world of jazz and away from rock altogether. but such claims were misguided. crimson was, as ever, seeking to expand the vocabulary of rock music and 'lizard' was, in some ways, the band's most ambitious album to date. as this lineup never toured, very little of the material was performed live and 'lizard' remained a product of the studio environment and the musicians who performed on it. 'lizard' standalone nature makes it difficult even to compile in context next to crimson's other material - with only 'bolero' featuring on the box sets covering crimson's extensive history. 'lizard' remains a fascinating, intriguing album - an album only a band called king crimson could make - even if it was a very different king crimson to that which had gone before or would come after. now completely remixed from the original multitrack recording tapes by steven wilson for 5.1 surround sound and featuring a new stereo mix from the same source tapes by robert fripp and steven wilson, 'lizard' finally reveals its true beauty.