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Jethro Tull - Thick As A Brick CD (album) cover


Jethro Tull


Prog Folk

4.63 | 3047 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Jethro Tull - Thick as A Brick

* This review has been edited due to new insights.

This is the kind of progressive music that stood the test of time. Jethro was being accused of making an concept album when releasing Aqualung, so they wanted to live up to their given reputation just for the sake of it. Never would they have though at the time that they would make a masterpiece.

The album has all the known Tull elements; Flute, folky chord-progressions on acoustic guitar, some rockin' moments with electric guitar, great drums, electric organs and of course the one in a trillion vocal style of Ian Andersen. Elements of the music that aren't present on all other Tull albums are the progressive compositions, the conceptual form of the album and the refreshing use of musical themes. The album is one big track, divided due to the limitations of the vinyl record. The original cover was a fold out news paper which takes more then an hour to read. Jethro Tull later told the press the making of this newspaper took as long as the recording of the album.

Though many refer to the conceptual song-writing as the main attraction of this album, I must admit I think the strenth lies in the induvidual song parts. I'm not that blown away by the way the long compositions evolve and the theme changes aren't always that smart. Many melodies and vocal themes are very catchy and most instrumental parts show why the worlds needs a progressive genre.

The way Jehtro Tull plays progressive folk-rock is strong, but I think they were out-smarted in this field by many others (Jan Dukes de Grey, Comus, Pearls Before Swine). The problem with Tull is, I don't really like their sound too much. I miss on the authenticity and though the voice of Anderson is strong, he does sound a bit dinstanced from the music. A more cohesive sound would have made this the masterpiece I would like to have found in Thick as a Brick. It has become one of the highest rated three albums of PA and I must admit I can make a list of at least a dozen albums that I would rather have seen on that position. Still, Thick as Brick stands out as one of the better albums of the progressive folk genre and it deserves four stars.

friso | 4/5 |


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