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Jethro Tull

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Jethro Tull Nightcap album cover
3.67 | 176 ratings | 12 reviews | 21% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Boxset/Compilation, released in 1993

Songs / Tracks Listing

Disc 1: (50:34)
1. First Post (1:54)
2. Animelée (1:41)
3. Tiger Toon (1:36)
4. Look At The Animals (5:09)
5. Law Of The Bungle (2:32)
6. Law Of The Bungle Part II (5:26)
7. Left Right (5:01)
8. Solitaire (1:25)
9. Critique Oblique (9:03)
10. Post Last (5:35)
11. Scenario (3:26)
12. Audition (2:34)
13. No Rehearsal (5:12)

Disc 2: (70:17)
1. Paradise Steakhouse (4:01)
2. Sealion II (3:21)
3. Piece Of Cake (3:40)
4. Quartet (2:45)
5. Silver River Turning (4:52)
6. Crew Nights (4:33)
7. The Curse (3:39)
8. Rosa On The Factory Floor (4:38)
9. A Small Cigar (3:39)
10. Man Of Principle (3:57)
11. Commons Brawl (3:24)
12. No Step (3:38)
13. Drive On The Young Side Of Life (4:13)
14. I Don't Want To Be Me (3:29)
15. Broadford Bazaar (3:38)
16. Lights Out (5:16)
17. Truck Stop Runner (3:47)
18. Hard Liner (3:47)

Total Time: 120:51

Line-up / Musicians

Disc 1:
- Ian Anderson (flute, balalaika, mandolin, Hammond organ, acoustic guitar, vocals) plays on all tracks
- Martin Barre (electric guitar) plays on all tracks
- John Evans (celeste, piano) plays on all tracks
- Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond (bass, backing vocals) plays on all tracks
- Barriemore Barlow (drums) plays on all tracks
Disc 2:
- Ian Anderson (flute, mouth organ, claghorn, piano, vocals, harmonica, mandolin) plays on all tracks
- Martin Barre (electric guitar, marimba) plays on tracks 1 - 8, 10 - 14 and 16 - 18
- Barriemore Barlow (drums, percussion) plays on tracks 1 - 2 and 4
- John Evans (piano) plays on tracks 1 - 2 and 4
- Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond (bass) plays on track 1 - 2 and 4
- David Palmer (keyboards, orchestra conductor) plays on tracks 4 and 9
- Dave Pegg (bass, mandolins, vocals) plays on tracks 3, 5 - 8, 10 - 14, 16 and 18
- Gerry Conway (drums, percussion) plays on tracks 6 - 7, 10 - 13 and 16
- Peter-John Vettese (piano, synthesizer) plays on tracks 6 and 13
- Doane Perry (drums) plays on tracks 3, 5, 8 and 14

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to AndYouAndI for the last updates
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JETHRO TULL Nightcap ratings distribution

(176 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(21%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(51%)
Good, but non-essential (26%)
Collectors/fans only (2%)
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)

JETHRO TULL Nightcap reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars DISC 1: ****Chateau D'ysaster Tapes. recorded in France.These are the tracks that never got released after Anderson disbanded temporarily JT , only to come back and try this large project that never materialized and War Child was what survived that. If you listen well to those track you might just pick out each and everyone of them and place on the albums of the times Passion Play, War Child and Minstrel . The flavour is there and it is not missing much to have another classic Tull from that period - just that this has an unfinished feel to it.

DISC 2: ** Much less essential as they filled it up with odds, bits, & ends

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I remember vividly that it took me about a month to finally decide buying this double CD since I saw it displayed in one of local record stores in Jakarta, sometime in 1997. I was in doubt looking at the title that it comprised unreleased masters of the band's previous works 1973 - 1991. It's basically due to my experience with very bad audio quality of what so called "bonus tracks" of other bands that re-mastered their classic works. Usually I am dissatisfied with these bonus tracks especially with the sonic quality as well as weird composition due to unfinished work. But I love the band and how come I don't have this one? So, I played dice and purchased this CD. I spun this CD right away in my car while driving home. To my surprise, the sonic quality sounded really excellent in my car stereo except that the bass that needs to add some more. But, overall it's very satisfactory because the treble and mid range are excellent and beyond other bands' bonus tracks standards.

Disc One

Disc One contains "Chateau D'issaster Tapes" that's being called this way by Ian Anderson due to the process by which this record was made. The infamous 1973 recording sessions at The Chateau D'Herouville, near Paris, were never completed due to ill-health, technical and production problems, and the sudden decision of the band to return to the UK from temporary and ill-advised tax exile. Rather than continue with the Chateau Tapes, the band decided to begin with a virtually new work which quickly became the more down-beat and controversial "A Passion Play".

The collection of songs in Disc One is really excellent and I never expected that they're as fine as this. From the classical music influence "First Post" that opened the collection beautifully with a combination of almost all acoustic instruments like guitar, alto sax, flute the collection moves smoothly to second track "Animelee" which still explores classical vein. Beautiful opening! It than moves into more attractive outfits with a strong nuance of "A Passion Play" album. Yes, for those who love "A Passion Play" album, including myself, would love to hear some catchy parts of the concept album through this collection with songs like "Tiger Toon", "Critique Oblique" and "Post Last". Because "A Passion Play" was released way before this collection, for me is like another treat listening to nice parts of the album in different arrangement here with different version.

The best parts that really satisfy me is when this collection reaches track 9 and 10 "Critique Oblique" - "Post Last". Yes, it truly sounds like "A Passion Play", i.e. approximately at minutes 15 of A Passion Play. The version featured here is different especially in Ian Anderson's vocal melody and flutes - it has more flute improvisation in this collection. Additionally, Ian inserts a nice narration in the middle of "Critique Oblique". WOW! Oh my God .. This is truly a masterpiece work! This track has a wonderful composition featuring inventive flute work and relatively complex structure with weird but nice rhythm section. It's truly a progressive act, my friend! For practicality, when I'm too lazy to spin "A Passion Play" CD that contains one long track (40 minutes plus), I'd rather play this "Critique Oblique" because it's shorter (9 minutes) played with different style and different ending part. "Post Last" (track 10) continues the "A Passion Play" nuance with great flute and complex rhythm section reflecting the original album version.

Other tracks in Disc One are also excellent. "Law of the Bungle" and "Law of The Bungle Part II" are excellent tracks with great narration by Ian Anderson. Structurally, it reminds me to the band's "War Child" album as well as "A Passion Play". "Look At The Animal" combines the works of piano, acoustic guitar and flute with unique voice of Ian. "Left Right" is a rocking track with excellent electric guitar work. "Solitaire" of course it's an outfit from "War Child" with great acoustic guitar work.

Well, I'm not exaggerating to give Disc one as masterpiece work with 5 stars rating.

Disc Two

Disc Two contains the band's unreleased and rare tracks from 1974 until 1994. Those that were made in seventies: "Paradise Steakhouse", "Sealion II" , "A Small Cigar", "Broadford Bazaar" and "Quartet". "Sealion II" is of course stemming "War Child" album. From the 70s tracks I can sense the classic Tull nuance with heavy dominance of flute and acoustic guitar.

From the eighties there are :"Crew Nights", "The Curse", "A Man of Principle", "Commons Brawl", "No Step", "Drive on The Young Side of Life", "Lights Out, and "Hard Liner". "A Man of Principle" is an excellent track in the vein of "Rock Island" album. I can see the move from seventies JT to the eighties whereby organ / keyboard was becoming obviously used. This also similar with the nineties with song like "Rosa On The Factory Floor".

I still consider Disc Two as a good collection even though it's not as good as Disc One. Rating for Disc Two is 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Highly recommended, especially for Disc One. Keep on proggin' .!!!!

Progressively yours,


Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars A parallel universe, and all for a good cause

This out-takes album covering the period from 1973 to 1991 contains work from the sessions which ultimately led to "A Passion play" plus later material, some of which saw the light of day in different formats on other albums. The collection is in two distinct parts. CD1, subtitled "The Chateau d'Isaster Tapes", was recorded in France in 1973, between the release of "Thick as a Brick" and "A Passion Play", while CD2 is a more eclectic gathering of tracks omitted from the various Tull albums released up to 1991.

Taking "The Chateau d'Isaster Tapes" first, this is a real lost gem of a collection. It would appear the reason they were not seen through to an official release at the time was in part an emotional one, with the band temporarily disbanding on their return from France where they were tax exiles. In some ways, these recordings are a bit of a tease. While they are largely complete in themselves, they come across at times as disjointed in this context. Some additional dubbing (mainly flute) was added around 1991, but these are essentially the tracks as they were originally laid down. Although some of the music found its way onto "A passion play", (mainly the latter tracks on disc 1 here) "War child", and Minstrel in the gallery" in different guises, these recordings have much more in common with "Thick as a brick". The performances have all the qualities which made TAAB such an essential album. Indeed, had this project been followed through, the whole history of Jethro Tull as a major prog band could have been radically different. Instead of the lacklustre "A passion play", which lead to Tull moving away from truly progressive works, they could so easily have created a follow up album which matched, or dare I say exceeded their finest hour.

The similarities with "Thick as a brick" are such that in some ways the tracks mirror the way Mike Oldfield reworked "Tubular Bells" on "Tubular Bells 2". The excellent "Law of the bungle" is an example of this, as is the softer "Scenario", which echoes the "Do you believe in the day" section of TAAB.

CD2 is a different story, but is nonetheless interesting and worthy of investigation. I would suggest though that it is really for collectors and fans only. Here we have a collection of disconnected tracks from the 1970s through to the early 90's, which were omitted from the albums for which they were intended for a variety of reasons (The albums concerned were "Rock Island," "Catfish Rising", "Broadsword And The Beast" and "Too Old To Rock And Roll.."). Some were too similar to other tracks already on the albums, while others were considered too radically different to the other tracks. What is undeniable though is that these tracks are in many cases equal to, and occasionally superior to, those tracks which were selected. "A small cigar" is interesting, as it was apparently dropped by Anderson because of its pro-smoking implications! Other highlights of this set include the lighter "Broadford bazaar" and the classically (Bach) based "Man of principle".

While the ever present Ian Anderson appears on all tracks and Martin Barre only misses a couple, the consistency of the first disc is notably absent. This can be attributed in part to the line up changes the band experienced over the period, and perhaps more significantly to Anderson's enforced change of vocal style during the 1980's as a result of illness.

In order to emphasise the fact that this release was a reaction to demand from fans, and not a money making exercise, Ian Anderson insisted that it be sold at the "lowest price possible", and donated the royalties to two charities.

Review by Andrea Cortese
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars ".so here we have it! Not a cup of tea for everyone, but a slightly dizzy night cap for old friends."

First CD: The embryonic state of what'll be A Passion Play. Jethro Tull went to France to record a follow-up to Thick As a Brick. This one is the most important and it caused great excitement among Tull-fans since it contained the previously unreleased tapes from the Château D'Hérouville sessions of 1972. These tapes were believed to be missing, but Ian found them back after working his way through a large amount of old studio tapes. Most of the material was (re) mastered, but a few pieces were left out however, since Ian judged them being "simply wretched".

Solitaire and Skating Away On the Thin Ice of the New Day, appeared two years later on the Warchild album. One of the songs that were never released is a three minute segment of a take that was never finished and is by Jethro Tull die-hard-fans called SAILOR. Sadly there's no trace of it in some official release.I only had it downloading some bootleg tracks!! (another unreleased is Hard Hearted English General).

The animals cycle

The first song is First Post. Animelée follows and then Tiger Toon. The first 3 songs are good soft/folk/disneyesque instrumental pieces suggesting a FIGHT between animals. Tiger Toon, in particular brings in that specific animal known as a predator and makes reference to the cartoon suggesting a sort of caricature. The first song with lyrics is Look at the Animals. It lays out the order of the food-chain in Anderson's world. Great idea this personification in the song: the animals wait in line on a stairwell to use the bathroom. The animals put chewing gum in each other's hair and swing from chandeliers. At one point the animals are playing with their tools. The analogy with people is emphasized when the narrator asks alternatively, " would you like to be one? , would you like to free one" and " would you like to queer one?" Law of the Bungle (I and II), is a song that was never completed, follows and reintroduces the tiger. He is king of the jungle and forces the other animals to submit to his will. The tiger in this case wears a suit and has business sense. Why not jungle? The reason is the cartoonish, caricaturish nature of the lyrics but I didn't manage to understand the message between the lines! (P.S. see that in the War Child album one of the greatest tracks was Bungle In The Jungle!).

After this first six tracks animals tracks it's the turn of Left Right, one of my JT favourites ever, with that irritating crying babies intro. Critique Oblique is that famous part of you can listen to part of its guitar's riff in an acoustic temper and some different lyrics. That famous verses of APP sang by Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond are here sang by Ian: ".and your little sister's immaculate virginity wings away on the bony shoulders of a young horse named George who stole surreptitiously into her geography revision.". Another APP faithful is Post Last. Scenario, Audition and No Rehersal are all good songs in a more soft and sad temper with dominant acoustic guitar and great deep voice from Ian!

The second disc is completely different, containing material from different years, from 1974 to 1991: Paradise Steakhouse (one of the best tracks by JT), Sealion II (vocals by Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond with only few words spoken by Ian), Quartet (instrumental and the most prog one: a must have in your collection!), A Small Cigar and Broadfoard Bazaar (great acoustic gem!). All these tracks above are now findable on the new remastered editions of War Child, Too Old.and Heavy Horses. Then there's a lot of 80s material, interesting in particular Rosa On The Factory Floor, Commons Brawl, Drive On The Young Side Of Life (title reminds me of Skating Away.) and I Don't Want To Be Me.

Evaluation: First Disc is for all you lovers of's essential and I'll rate it with 5 stars! (agree with GW). The Second Disc although being good it seem to lacks in importance for the JT fans because of those latest remastered (and more complete than this) albums with tons of beautiful bonus tracks!

Final rating: 4 stars! P.S. The first disc is highly recommendable!

Review by ClemofNazareth
3 stars As a disclaimer I should note that I am not an in-depth expert on Jethro Tull by any means, despite owning a dozen of their albums. Although I have an original vinyl pressing of Stand Up! (given to me as a teenager), my first recollection of the band was the radio-friendly “Bungle in the Jungle” and later discovered most of their 70s classics. During the 80s and 90s I continued to pick up the occasional album, but never really got into anything the band did after Broadsword.

This is a two CD set I picked up mostly out of mild curiosity for the second disc, which is a collection of songs recorded during the 70s and 80s for several of the band’s albums, but for one reason or another were never released. I thought it might be an interesting exercise to try and figure out which album each song was originally intended for. But as soon as I opened the case that idea faded since the liner notes clearly lay out the band members and dates for each track, so determining when and why they were recorded wasn’t necessary.

The first disc turns out to be the tracks Anderson dubbed the “Chateau D’isaster tapes”, the shelved recordings from the band’s foray into tax exile to France in 1972. I’ve read this was the band’s original attempt at A Passion Play, and in fact much of the music on the disc can be mapped to parts of that album. Overall the music feels unfinished, which of course it was. Apparently a lot of Anderson’s flute tracks were dubbed in years later. There are a couple of mildly interesting tracks, particularly the dual “Law of the Jungle” tracks with their spoken-word snippets and some tight guitar work by Martin Barre. “Critique Oblique” is also well-developed, but is characteristically understated and I wouldn’t rank it among the best things the band has recorded over the years. Eight of the thirteen tracks are quite short (one or two minutes), and are almost definitely unfinished from their originally intended scope. Overall this is an interesting listen, but not particularly stellar, and a bit disappointing considering the great albums that preceded it.

The second disc gives a nice chronology of the band’s musical and lyrical development over about a fifteen year period, but that’s about it, and will likely only be of interest to hard-core fans of the band.

All told there are over thirty tracks here spread over the two discs, and the volume of music and crisp production are noteworthy, but I have to say that this does not have the cohesion one would expect from a typical Tull studio work. Of course, that’s because it isn’t a typical studio work, but I can’t see giving this more than three stars overall – four for the first disc mostly for the historical interest, and two for the second because “for collectors only” pretty much explains why this collection was ever released at all. So three stars it is, and some mild disappointment that I paid full price for it.


Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars When I saw this release, I was kind of sceptic. Unrealeased tapes for me means : danger ! FYI, I have recently reviewed "Time Vaults" for VDGG which was also made of "unrealeased" material and a total bunch of crap. So, what will the Tull propose with this one ?

The first CD contains the project for a new album and was recorded in France in 1973. Ian explains the project on the liner notes. I quote :

"This collection of hitherto unreleased recordings is now available at the request of the many hard-core Tull fans who have learned, over the years, of the existence of the material. Most of the sessions for past studio albums have produced an extra song or two surplus to requirements. Sometimes these pieces failed to make it on to a record because they were too similar to one of their brothers and sisters : sometimes, as the ear may just detect, because they were too different !

The infamous 1973 recording at the Chateau d'Hérouville, near Paris, were never completed due to ill-health, technical and production problems, and the sudden decision of the band to return to the U.K. from temporary and ill-advised tax exile. Rather than continue with the Chateau Tapes, we decided to begin again with a virtually new work which quickly became the more down-beat and contraversial "A Passion Play".

So, here we have it. Not a cup of tea for everyone, but a slightly dizzy night cap for old friends in need of that last dram before laying down their heads to dream of what might have been". Ian Anderson (September 1993).

Sorry to have been exhaustive, but I found quite interesting to type (no copy and paste here) this entire explanation to provide you a good background for this work. Who, better than Ian, could do this ?

So, back to the music now. When I listened to the first two tracks my fears were confirmed : IMO, I was again confronted with poor stuff and only released to make money. But I was (hopefully) completely wrong. Both for the music as well as for their financial interest in this project.

There are some good and interesting numbers on both discs. It is normal I guess, that some parts will be included in "A Passion Play" which will replace the Chateau d'Hérouville's project. It is definitely noticeable during : "Tiger Toon", "Law Of The Bungle" (part one and two). Part two is really great : strong melody, powerfull band and very good fluting. Who can complain ? With "Look At The Animals" : the Kangaroo & the Pussy Cat are present; but not yet a sign for the Hare... (you know, the one who lost his spectacles). "Critique Oblique" is the longest number and as well very much an inspiration for APP as such. Scarry, rocking, fluting. In one word : great. "Post Last" has nothing to do with the opener. It is again a very strong number (one more). The atmosphere is quite similar to the previous track (same influence for APP : this one being end of part I). "Scenario" is an acoustic and average number. "Audition" and "No Rehearsal" are again, very good numbers.

So the Tull will abandon the "Chateau D'Hérouville" 's project but not really (almost half of it will be taken over or have a deep influence on APP). The sequencing will be different from the one featured here.

The intro for "Left right" is a bit weird and poor, but after one minute we get another strong Tull song. Hard rocking, somewhat heavy even. But not too much. Lots of fluting again and a solid rythmic work. Barre is very present as well (he's probably the one who brought the heavy side to this piece of music). "Only solitaire" will be taken as such on "War Child". This little acoustic piece is quite childish in its melody and not really my cup of tea.

Disc I, might well be worth four stars, really.

Disc II is a collection of unreleased or rare tracks (at the time). I don't know why they are not chronologically presented here. So, I did the work to re-order them as they were written and I will quickly review them as such.

We have three tracks from 1974 : "Paradise Steakhouse", " Sealion II", "Quartet". All of them will be available on "War Child" remastered. Only the latter one is poor.

One track from 1975 : "A Small Cigar". Available as bonus track on "Too Old...". A really emotional and acoustic number. Fantastic singing from Ian (I mentioned this already in my review for the album I think).

Another from 1978 : "Broadford Bazzar" : available as a bonus on "Heavy Horses". Not the best one, frankly. This acoustic and mellow song is rather insipid. Press forward.

Lots of numbers from 1981. They are still not available elsewhere (to my knowledge). "Crew Nights" could have fit perfectly on "Broadsword" and is a very pleasant one. "The Curse" is more pop oriented, more electronic (if you see what I mean : "A" is not far away). Still, it should have been a highlight on "A" would it have been included there. "Commons Brawl" : has a hard intro, but then turns into a quite "pastoral" track. A bit electro pop oriented as well. Not great, not bad. "No Step" is somewhat weak. No real melody. Repetitive. A bit dull. "Drive On The Young Side Of Life" on the contrary is very nice. A classic Tull work that could have been released easily on "Broadsword" as well : hard-rock oriented (again) but in line with this good album ("Broadsword", I mean). "Lights Out" is reminiscent to Dire Straits. There will be a lot more like this but much later in the Tull career. This has been noticed in "Crest" but much more in "Catfish Rising".

"Man Of Principle" was written in 1988. It is not a great track. Press forward again.

From 1989, we get the very good "Hard Liner" : great to sublime guitar work (I mean it). A fantastic and catchy melody. I don't understand it did not make "Rock Island" (not even as a bonus track).

Four tracks are dated from 1990. "Piece Of Cake" : is not really mine (Dire Strait is back again). As I have said in my review for "Catfish Rising" I have nothing against Dire Straits. On the contrary they have written some classics of the rock history and at times I spin one of their early work but why should the Tull sound so much as them ? "Silver River Turning" is another very good one (it seems that the Tull is alterning good and average number here). Good riff and slow-paced, hard rocking. There is even an aerial passage in the middle of the song. Quite interesting. "Rosa" is a bit blues oriented and rather average. "I Don't Want To Be Me" is a rock ballad which will not enter the Hall Of Fame of the rock music. Not too bad a track but not really good either.

Disc II is not so great as Disc I. It does not have the same historical value. A lot will be released in the meantime as bonus tracks and the other ones are average to good songs. No highlights. If rated separately, I would say two stars.

So, the average is quite easy to calculate. Three stars for this good lost bunch of Tull songs. Thanks you guys to have released this !

So, we have been discussing the musical aspect. Let's talk a bit about about the financial one.

I thought that money was the first interest from the band. It was abolutely not.

One can read in the liner notes the following. I quote Ian :

"Lest anyone feel ('though understandably) that this bottom drawer collection is merely the exploitation of warty rejects to earn another miserable buck, I wish it ot be known that we have fought hard to keep the price of this set to lowest possible levels and that I am donating all songwrtting royalties accruing to me from this material to the charities listed below : "Balmain House, Home of Highland Music, Inverness, Scotland" (Ian is Scotish) and "The Animal Health Trust".

I take my hat's off !

Review by Slartibartfast
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / In Memoriam
3 stars My first encounter with the Chateau D'isaster tapes was in the 20 year box set that came out in '88. I thought that was all there was to it but then got the word that there was a version of the album that might have been. It came out just a few years after the box set, but I am now just checking Nightcap out. If you're a fan of '70's Tull, and A Passion Play in particular, there's a lot of familiar material here. Some things went to A Passion Play. The song, Solitaire, went to Warchild. There are enough parts that I haven't heard here to make the whole thing a rather interesting production. Since the tapes were supposed to be a disaster, I have to guess that this has to be a polished up version of what was done.

The second disc is a mix of leftover songs from the '70's with a few other dregs from the 80's and '90's in the second disc. I know the '70's stuff is now incorporated as bonus tracks on the remasters of their '70's albums. The tracks from the next two decades aren't bad either if you enjoy the Tull from those years.

The songwriting royalties from this release were (and are still? probably) being donated to charities.

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
3 stars In the liner notes, Ian Anderson almost seems ashamed of this collection. He states that he fought to keep the price down, and is donating the proceeds to charity.

But there is nothing to be ashamed of here. It is by no means Jethro Tull's best album. But I like it.

Just as Brian of Nazareth was the man who was almost Jesus, the first disk, dubbed "The Chateau D'Isaster Tapes" was the album that was almost "A Passion Play". "Bad health, technical and production problems" caused the band to give up on this album, eventually to record APP. Many of the works on this appeared in a different form on that album (and elsewhere). Here, sounding not quite finished, and somewhat muddily recorded, they amount to what could have been a great album under other circumstances.

The second disk is a collection of songs left off of other albums (many have been issues as bonus tracks since, but I, having first CD issues of most do not own those, so I rejoice in this set). Anderson notes that they were omitted because they either sounded too much like other songs, or were so different they didn't fit with the theme. I personally like the earlier, seventies material here better than the more recent songs, but none are unlistenable.

This is definitely a must for the Tullophile, and a pleasant, but not necessary album for any other prog fan.

Review by Warthur
4 stars The first disc of this two-CD set presents what most purchasers are probably most interested in - the legendary Chateau D'isaster Tapes, songs produced during the abortive recording sessions for the followup to Thick as a Brick. Much of the material of course, would end up being cannibalised to create A Passion Play - the lyrics occasionally refer to passion plays, but more regularly compare human society to animals at the zoo, which might be where the Tale of the Hare Who Lost His Spectacles came from. I actually greatly prefer this version to the album that resulted; it doesn't have the jarring and irritating interval of the Hare Who Lost His Spectacles to wreck the album's momentum, and the band have retained the sense of humour that they temporarily lose for the bulk of the Play (Martin Barre's spoken word interjection at the start of Law of the Bungle Part 2 is completely demented!). Plus, the instrumental performances are absolutely top notch. It's not quite of the standards of Thick as a Brick, but it's much closer to those lofty heights than A Passion Play, so I'll give disc 1 of this set four and a half stars.

The accompanying disc is more of a three-star collection, bringing together various rejected tracks of which only a few (such as the opening Paradise Steakhouse) really stand out. I believe many of them have come out over the years as bonus tracks on various Tull remasters anyway. Either way, they're not really the main attraction here - that being the Chateau tapes - so I won't penalise the rating too harshly for this.

Latest members reviews

5 stars I picked this up when I noticed it in the import section at a local CD store. Wow! The entire Chateau d'Isaster tapes! And in excellent sound! I love this material, even if a great deal was reworked for the Passion Play album, I find the original work to be better, by far. The Law of the Bungle ... (read more)

Report this review (#903400) | Posted by wehpanzer | Thursday, January 31, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Going to keep this review quite short, and its coming from someone relatively lukewarm to the standard release of A Passion Play. It's probably heresy of a sort on my part but I consider this original attempt at the Play to be considerably superior and a real find for Tull fiends. It has prec ... (read more)

Report this review (#84866) | Posted by tullist | Wednesday, July 26, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This is a two CD set. The 2nd CD is unreleased material mainly from the BROADSWORD and ROCK ISLAND sessions. Although this material is decent, it is certainly not essential. However, the material from the 1st CD is a must have. It is prime Tull material written in between the BRICK and PASSIO ... (read more)

Report this review (#16831) | Posted by | Tuesday, September 14, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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