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Ian Anderson - Thick As A Brick 2 [Aka: TAAB2] CD (album) cover


Ian Anderson


Prog Folk

3.74 | 397 ratings

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3 stars So, forty years on, what would Gerald Bostock - aged fifty in 2012 - be doing today? What might have befallen him?

The above phrase was an exact copy and paste thing from Ian Anderson's statement in January 2012 about this part 2 of Jethro Tull's concept album that was successful in 1972: Thick As A Brick. What a mind-boggling statement from the master of seventies' prog rock. It's so promising as I was part of the people who enjoyed that seminal album in the seventies even though I was quite late by two or three years from the issue date. Yes, I vividly remember that I knew this album sometime in 1975. I was impressed by its music - not the story as I did not know what was actually all about until I got the CD sometimes in the nineties. But then when I knew 'A Passion Play 'for the first time in 1980, I was much more liking A Passion Play than TAAB for one reason: many repetition of music in TAAB while APP was much more dynamic.

When I knew that TAAB2 would be recorded and released I did not expect much as I do not believe something like Part 2 or the like. It sounds to me like riding the popularity of the old success. By my standard, prog music must move on with new things and not necessarily looking back on past successes. A very good role model on this is Peter Gabriel who never look back his past days with Genesis by performing any number in The Lamb Lies Down album into his concert. Yes, prog music must move on with new things and not doing things retroactive. That's my view.

This TAAB2 which stems from a fictious story about a child named Gerald Bostock whom by now already fifty and may scenarios might have happened into his entire life in the span of forty years since 1972, musically is very different with its 1972 predecessor. One thing for sure, I do really miss the dynamic basslines that we can hear on the TAAB original version. The sond thing that I miss is the eerie and dynamic Hammond organ sounds we repeatedly find in TAAB. But that's OK as Bostock has grown up and he no longer likes the dynamic sound of basslines and the inventive Hammond organ work and now replaced by the acoustic guitar work - which flows excellently throughout this TAAB2.

The first time I listened to this album I was quite disappointed - not because of the basslines and Hammond organ - as it sounded to me flat as no emotion or to be precise it seemed like no soul with this album. This was than worsen by the fact that it's no longer Jethro Tull as I am much more liking the 'group' approach than a solo one - even though I love Peter Gabriel's works. I don't know for what reason this album was finally recorded under Ian Anderson's work instead of Jethro Tull. But what ever the reason, provided that this as-if created by Jethro Tull, still could not create such 'a-ha' factor to my taste.

But, don't get me wrong - I think this TAAB2 album is a very good album especially I salute with Ian's creativity in composing music that is basically driven by acoustic guitar work combined with wonderful flute-work. Yes, the music is quite dynamic with some interesting segments - and about 10% of them were shots taken from original 1972 album. The album is like a compilation of songs instead of story-line. Some tracks are interesting like 'Wootton Bassett Town' which to me sounds like a song suitable as part of 'Heavy Horses' album. Another excellent track is 'A Change Of Horses' which happens to be the longest track with 8 minutes duration.

Overall, it's a very good prog music album with most elements of music were composed with acoustic guitar as the main instrument combined with some electric guitar work and - as usual - very nice flute-work! Keep on proggin' ....!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Gatot | 3/5 |


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