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Jethro Tull - Aqualung CD (album) cover


Jethro Tull


Prog Folk

4.36 | 2707 ratings

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3 stars The legendary British Hard/Folk Rock band was formed in Luton in 1967, although its leader Ian Anderson (vocals, flute) originated from Blackpool.Guitarist Mick Abrahams, bassist Glenn Cornick and drummer Clive Bunker completed the original line-up, which was signed by Chrysallis.Abrahams left after the first album ''This was'' (1968), replaced by Martin Barre and this line-up recorded ''Stand up'' in 1969.Cornick was forced to exit Jethro Tull in 1970 after the release of the ''Benefit'' album due to his distant relationship with the rest of the members, Jeffrey Hammond enters the picture and keyboardist John Evan was promoted to a full-time member.Fourth album ''Aqualunq'' was recorded at Island Studios between December 70'-February 71' and was released in March, more or less a thematic work around faith and the relation between man and God.

Jethro Tull's musical roots can be found in a Heavy/Blues Rock style, which the band never actually abandoned, but through the sands of time they developed their own style combining Folk, Rock and Classical Music elements, leading to the first trully refined album of the group.''Aqualung'' stands for many as a classic of the Prog Rock genre, having a devastating power, performed through the hard guitar riffing, a nostalgic attitude due to the instant bluesy tunes, but also a strong progressive and British-styled content, characterized by Evan's interesting keyboard parts, Anderson's fiery solos and the addition of more complex themes in their music.More impressively the band did develop their new style in short but rich pieces without feeling to execute long or stretched compositions.The music on ''Aqualung'' contains balanced textures with laid-back passages, based on Anderson's poetic voice and the changing flute/acoustic guitar sections, and more emphatic moments with dense instrumental parts and a raw power, delivered via dynamic electric tunes, complicated tempo changes and in-your-face flute interventions.Still Evan is there to offer the appropriate elaborate touch with nice Hammond organ parts, pleasant piano lines and even some orchestral Mellotrons.As a result ''Aqualung'' starts its journey from the rural fields of UK, passes through the Blues Rock of the 60's and ends up in the upcoming wave of British Prog Rock, combining different levels of energy in a well-composed and nicely performed album.

Not a masterpiece in my opinion, but certainly an excellent album of energetic Prog Rock from the early-70's with great vocals and plenty of instrumental diversity.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

apps79 | 3/5 |


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