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Jethro Tull - Heavy Horses CD (album) cover

HEAVY HORSES

Jethro Tull

 

Prog Folk

4.00 | 779 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

febus
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / In Memoriam
2 stars SONGS FROM THE BARN!

I always had mixed feelings about HEAVY HORSES! It has never been a favorite JT album of mine, being one of those i listen to the least. Only UNDER WRAPS is getting less love than this one onm y turntable. Even if the life in the British countryside is still the main theme of this album ,it doesn't follow exactly the same pattern than its predecessor SONGS FROM THE WOOD.

For once, the lyrics are not as joyful as on SFTW as they try to deal with the problems facing the countryside in a ever changing modern world. This is not about medieval fairy tales or -drinking Guiness in a pub- songs. So the mood of HEAVY HORSES is quite dark, somber than usual in a JT album.

Another matter that doesn't make this album as enjoyable as usual is the drastic change of IAN ANDERSON vocal capabilities. Already, we could detect on SFTW the slow evolution of his voice in a more ''earthy'' tone.I don't know if ANDERSON was smoking tobacco back then but he sounds like a guy with a cigarette not too far from him. The voice sounds harsh, kind of rough. It might suit the athmosphere of the album, but it's definitely an aquired taste now compared to the way he sang earlier from TIME WAS to TOTRNR.

HEAVY HORSES is somewhat a little bit more rocking than SFTW, but the hard rock side of JT with the usual MARTIN BARRE guitar breaks has disappeared , tha ''heaviest'' one being the 8mn long title track which happen to be my favorite track of the album. It has all the traditional the JT features we love, such as good sounding guitar, nice PALMER arrangements in the back, a good melody with nice acoustic works from ANDERSON, well the most ''proggish'' (or what's left) song of the album.

The rest is divided with the usual folky tracks such as MOTHS or WEATHERCOOK. There is nothing wrong with them, they're decent songs, but they don't stay in my head after they are over. JETHRO TULL has released plenty of similar songs in the past, only more memorable.The same goes for ONE BROWN HOUSE. AND THE MOUSE POLICE NEVER SLEEPS is nice gentle rocker, but IAN's rough voice drowns this song completely.The rest of the album is not very interesting with NO LULLABY a melody-less song that quite drags a bit or JOURNEYYMAN and ROVER that have definitely nothing special to remember.

2 bonus tracks have been added and as in every JETHRO TULL remastered edition, they are good especially BROADFORD BAZAAR.

Last thing, i never understood why IAN ANDERSON would release later SOLO albums as he is JETHRO TULL. HEAVY HORSES could have been one of them as it sounds definitely as the frontman toy than a group effort. Even in the booklet, you see IAN everywhere from the cover to the his 5 pics inside. You have to wait for the back cover to see the remaining members surrounding of course the master sitting behind the desk. Also there are no credits whatsoever giving the names from the poor 5 other musicians

2 STARS!

febus | 2/5 |

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