Singer and guitarist Adrian Belew is going to be returning to King Crimson after leaving in 2009. The news was shared by guitarist and composer Robert Fripp on Facebook.
Fripp, who has been the only continuous member of the group since its formation in 1968, wrote in the evening of 3rd September: “Very happy to report that I have just spoken to Brother Belew and addressed various issues beginning with B and D. Ade and me have pledged to continue a convention of pumping down monster margaritas, both in Mount Juliet and here in Bredonborough, where Slinky Toes Willcox makes a mean margarita herself. Adrian has also agreed to be King Crimson’s Ninth Man. Who knows what the future holds for this strange outfit?”
An hour later, Fripp wrote another Facebook post: “Have just toasted Brother Ade at a distance with a Slinky Toes’ Monster Margarita. There are no current plans for Adrian to come out with the current formation; but in Crimson’s strange history there is a tendency for things to come around. So, Adrian has rejoined the larger family – hooray! – and doors to the future are open. So, no plans, but who knows what the future holds?” He added: “Right now, I’m looking forward to Gizmodrome and getting a few more guitar lessons…”
Gizmodrome is the name of the supergroup Belew is currently involved in. Their first, self-titled album is going to be released on 15th September.
Belew confirmed the news on his own Facebook page around the same time: “HOLD IT EVERYONE. Perhaps I can explain the concept of Ninth Man Inactive. It doesn’t mean I’m back in the band currently. It means I may be back in the band in the future at some point. It leaves the door open for Crimson to evolve as necessary,” he clarified. “So, nothing for the future has changed with either Crimson or Gizmodrome but at least we now understand each and can continue our friendship.”
The reconciliation between the two former bandmates comes just a few weeks short of four years after Belew wrote, also on Facebook, that Fripp had informed him “in an email that he was starting a 7-piece version of the band. He said I would not be right for what the band is doing.” Belew was formerly a member of King Crimson from 1981 until 2009, during which time they released six studio albums, although they were on hiatus between 1984-1994.
The group’s current incarnation formed in 2013, with Jakko Jakszyk on vocals and second guitar. They are starting a North American tour on 19th October. As both Fripp and Belew have emphasized, it’s yet to be seen what Belew’s role is going to be in the band during and following the upcoming tour.