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Jethro Tull - Original Masters  CD (album) cover


Jethro Tull


Prog Folk

3.19 | 72 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars After the revolution, the little rats slipped from their dark shelters of debris and sniffed around the wasteland for something to eat. What they found were mostly moldy back catalogs that, with a little effort, could be scraped clean and made consumable in a new guise. Perhaps a little history in their defense, however. Compact discs were introduced in 1983 and, like most new technology, it was the technophiles among the old guard who first raised its standard. Labels were slow to release past works on CD, following Mobile Fidelity's cautious path by choosing established classics (e.g., "Aqualung"). So in 1985, there was a vacuum just waiting for the right rat to fill it: TULL fans (who were older and now presumably wealthier) lusting to hear the old classics on compact disc. Bear in mind that "compact disc" was originally synonymous with "expanded dynamic range and superior sound" much as DVDs were originally assumed to all be of higher quality than VHS (they weren't).

"Original Masters" does give the old gems a good spit and shine, but subsequent CDs would be digitally remastered, then remastered using the original source tapes, then remastered from the original source tapes using 24-bit and HDCD technology, and heaven knows what the rats will come up with next. All by way of saying that what looked appetizing in 1985 may not be a match for 2001's "The Very Best of JETHRO TULL". Among the first-generation CDs, however, stick with the Original. Moreso than most TULL compilations, the selections are in synchronicity with my own personal tastes: "Skating Away...", "Thick As A Brick" (the opening edit #1), "Songs From The Wood", "Too Old To Rock 'N' Roll..". Just the sort of thing I would have put on a tape cassette years ago (before I knew I was breaking some law devised in the recreational basement of a freemason). The early selections run a little thick, yet "Witches Promise" and "Life's A Long Song" are welcome additions. Of note, the version of "Aqualung" sounds very different to these ears (I thought I read somewhere about a UK mix, but don't quote me on that).

daveconn | 4/5 |


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