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Jethro Tull - Aqualung Live CD (album) cover


Jethro Tull


Prog Folk

3.46 | 101 ratings

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3 stars OK. Feels weird to be the first one to review an album. Right. I've been a die-hard Tull fan for the past 25 years, and I have just decided to review all their albums for future generations to enjoy, starting with this one. I have to admit that I've never been a huge fan of the original Aqualung album; although it is their most commercially succesful album,so this is going to be slightly biased. First: The sound on the original is dull and compressed, even with all the remastered versions. On this live version, the sound is OK, but Doane Perry's drums sound like he's hitting his grandmother's coffee table with a couple of sticks; wooshy and thin and weak. I can never understand how come; after all the technologhical development in sound engineering, the drum sound could be so fucked-up! (I still think of that sound on "Bursting Out"; that was a real drum sound, not this!!) 2nd: Aqualung and Locomotive breath have been so overly exposed over the years, that I get nauseous just trying to listen to them again! And on this live version; nothing new or exciting happens to them, same old "tagadagada" on Aqualung before hitting the main "'sitting on a park bench" verse again; same old endings, "aqualun-un-un-un...."; "no way to no way to no way to....aaaaaaaaaaaaaa slow down!" ; same old everything. 3rd: Hymn 43 and Up to me; I have never heard them played live before, but they are definitely not the highlights of the album anyway. HOWEVER, Hymn 43 has been treated with a folky addendum la Christmas album, that makes it kind of, well, interesting. Up to me as well as Mother Goose are treated with an acoustic feel la "Rubbing Elbows";so that's nice. 4th and most important: Ian's voice. YES that's right; although everybody in the whole world seem to pretend the problem isn't there; well, I am very aware of this problem and have to say that it annoys me and irritates me very much. Ian has been struggling with his old songs ever since 84 or 85, and this is no exception. The vocal delivery is weak, strained, and irritating. The vocals are particularly bad on Cross-Eyed Mary. What else? OK I know it wasn't meant to be a REAL live album and that it's for a good cause, so that's kind of OK. However it adds nothing much to the original album, nor to any live version of the songs. So it's good, but not essential. 2,5. well ok, 3. PS: If you're new to Tull, buy the original, except if you want to buy it for the charity cause.
| 3/5 |


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