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Jethro Tull - Thick as a Brick CD (album) cover


Jethro Tull


Prog Folk

4.63 | 3506 ratings

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Steven Västman
5 stars Thick as a Brick is in a satire of the entire development of the genre. Ian Anderson has stated that his original intent, in response to the incorrect assertion that Aqualung had been a concept album, was to create the "mother of all concept albums", but as "a bit of a spoof". So, while the fans and sundry listeners do find Thick as a Brick a conceptual piece, it is clearly a laugh up the sleeve as well. The liner notes in the form of daily newspaper articles, no less - indicate that the lyrics are authored by one 'Gerald (Little Milton) Bostock', an eight-year-old poetic prodigy, who has won first-place in a writing contest. Alas, though, there is a scandal; Gerald's work is protested; the judge's revoke Gerald's prize; and the Thick as a Brick lyrics are deemed "obscure and verbose assertions". A conceptual non-concept: that is the joke of Thick as a Brick. Tull blurs the distinction between art and comedy, between impressive aesthetic display and mockery. Especially in contrast with A Passion Play, which is foreboding and marginally disjointed, Thick as a Brick is light in its refusal to be too well-lauded. And whereas something like Van der Graaf Generator's Pawn Hearts smacks of self-consciousness and existential absorption, Thick as a Brick seems quite playful, but all the while ambitious and clever.
Steven Västman | 5/5 |


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