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Jethro Tull - This Was CD (album) cover

THIS WAS

Jethro Tull

 

Prog Folk

3.32 | 858 ratings

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Walkscore
3 stars Bluesy Serenade.

Tull's first album is a mixed bag. It contains some great historic performances, and introduced Anderson's quirky vocals to the world, although at this point the band is more focussed on playing re-interpretations of blues and jazz tunes than writing new original music. The best track here, and the one I still often put on all the time, is Tull's cover of Rahsaan Roland Kirk's instrumental jazz standard "Serenade for a Cuckoo". This track is so excellent. Tull actually modifies the original chord progression on this song, improving it considerably in my opinion, although I really like the RRKirk version too. Anderson's flute is great, one of the highlights of Tull's catalogue. Nothing else on the album comes close to this track, although I really like "Beggar's Farm" and "Song for Jeffrey", as well as "My Sunday Feeling", "Dharma for One" and "Cat's Squirrel". Their follow-up, 'Stand Up', would not only improve on this album, but it would cement Tull as an important original voice, and still stands as the best of the early bluesy Tull era. But I still occasionally come back to their first album. I give this album 6.8 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which translates to 3 PA stars. Worth picking up for 'Serenade to the Cuckoo'.

Walkscore | 3/5 |

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