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Jethro Tull - Living In The Past  CD (album) cover


Jethro Tull


Prog Folk

4.13 | 297 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Andrea Cortese
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars " can you laugh when your own mother is hungry and how can you smile when your reasons for smiling are wrong?..."

After the huge success of the 'Aqualung' and the 'Thick As A Brick' albums the world demanded for other Jethro Tull-material. Chrysalis decided it was time for an EXTRA release: a compilation double album containing songs from the previous years, packed in a beautiful cover with photographs and details on the included songs. Named 'Living In The Past' after their 1969 successful single, new fans now got access to older material, while the long time fans finally found the singles they bought assembled on one album.

The following songs all were released as a single, some of them becoming hits in Europe and the US:

- "A Song For Jeffrey"; - "Love Story". Findable now in the This Was 2001 remastered edition as a bonus track; - "Living In The Past". This one is on the 2001 remastered edition of Stand Up; - "Sweet Dream". Stand Up remastered. - "Witches Promise". Benefit 2001 remastered edition; - "Teacher". Benefit remaster; - "Driving Song". Stand Up remaster; - "A Christmas Song" (first original work after the departure of Mick Abrahams). This piece is important for a number of reasons: first, it clearly establishes his view on alcohol, Anderson remaining a strong spokesman against drugs and alcohol for the duration of his career. He explained many times that he avoids intoxication because he feels it interferes with his creative process. Now you can find it, as a bonus track, on the This Was 2001 remastered edition; - "Singing All Day". Benefit remaster; - "Inside"; - "Just Trying To Be". Benefit Remaster; - "Alive And Well And Living In"; - "Hymn 43"; - "Bourée".

The album also contains five songs that were released in the EP format in 1971 (which featured the firs contribution from the great Barriemore Barlow):

- "Life Is A Long Song" - "Up The 'Pool" - "Dr. Bogenbroom" - "For Later" - "Nursie". Like the Aqualung's song "Cheap Day Return", Ian drew the inspiration for this personal song from a visit to his father in a hospital in Blackpool. Both songs were written in the train back to London.

There's also a new tune:

- "Wond'ring Again", revisited version of "Wond'ring Aloud", from Aqualung (longer edited version with different lyrics).

The album offers the first live recording of Jethro Tull to appear on record, two tracks from their benefit-gig in Carnegie Hall, New York, November 1970:

- "By Kind Permission Of", inspired by a well known piece of classical music: the piano part in Sonate nr. 8 in C-flat (C mol), Opus 13 by Ludwig von Beethoven (1770-1827). Sonate nr. 8 is better known as 'Pathétique'. Another part is inspired by Rachmaninov (so the information sources) and taken from Prelude in G Sharp Minor, Opus 3 nr. 2. The piece became known as "By Kind permission Of" because significant sections were borrowed from classical composers, all of whom were deceased and not in a position to give Evans permission to perform them. Apart from Beethoven and Rachmaninov, parts were included from Claude Debussy's "Golliwog's Cakewalk". - "Dharma For One". An instrumental with a vaguely "Eastern" feel, which features a Clive Bunker's stunning drum solo. The title is something taken from that hippy / eastern philosophy which was a fad at the time. Originally on the This Was 1968 album, the song was an instrumental one. Two years later Anderson wrote some lyrics for the live shows.

Evaluation: abstractly 5 stars:


1) Until 1978 these two tracks will be the only live performances released. Now there's the 2005 live album Nothing Is Easy: 1970 Isle Of Wight Festival (also on DVD). 2) Living In The Past is the faster place to find the Life Is A Long Song-Maxi Single (EP). 3) Only here you can listen to Wond'ring Again.


1) big part of the song now are findable on the respective year released album. 2) CD version doesn't include all the 2-LP material: Teacher, Bourée, Alive And Well And Living In and Hymn 43 couldn't fit in it, for CD's known time limits. You have to buy Benefit remastered edition!

.and so.(I) aloudly proclaim: 4 stars!! (3.5-4, really!).

Andrea Cortese | 4/5 |


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