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Jethro Tull - Songs From The Wood CD (album) cover


Jethro Tull


Prog Folk

4.17 | 1226 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
4 stars "With Kitchen Prose, Gutter Rhymes and divers" subtitles the album! Quite a programme as promised by the Mad Flauter.

After the real "faux-pas" of TOTRNR, Tull took a solid breath (of fresh air by moving to the country) and tried to catch their second wind in an effort to salvage a career that was slowly gliding to the ordinary. And with this one album, they will prove that they still had to be counted with: although the artwork reminded a bit the one of Time Was, it was an English folklore book that inspired a good part of the album but not to the point where he would embrace it as seriously as Comus or Gryphon would've. It must be also signalled that Anderson had produced (and guested on) a Steeleye Span record, which also obviously also inspired him.

Starting very strongly with the superb title track and the acoustic follow-up Jack In The Green, the awesome Hunting Girl closing the first side, there is only Cup of Wonder that feels a bit sub-par to an excellent standard. While the second side starts on the percussive Solstice Bells and the great pastoral Velvet Green, the superb aptly-titled Whistler (loaded with flutes), the strange and enchanting Pibroch, with only the short Fire At Midnight being the weakest track on this very even album.

One of the small tiny disappointments is that the tracks lengths are rather conservative, the album is very much sung and although there are some instrumental passages, one feels that there is not enough space for interplay. But as I said, this is about as negative as I could find, because it is obvious that this was one of their more cooperative effort. And it shows! And if the album does not hit the spot at first play, keep trying, it will come soon enough.

The bonus tracks of the remastered reissue are a little less interesting than on some other of their albums, as there is a (useless) live version of Velvet Green, and the very adapted-to-the-album Beltane. But the truth is that this album did not need bonus tracks to remains an essential mid-70's Tull album.

Sean Trane | 4/5 |


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