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Jethro Tull

Prog Folk

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Jethro Tull RökFlöte album cover
3.19 | 117 ratings | 6 reviews | 7% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 2023

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Voluspo (3:43)
2. Ginnungagap (3:50)
3. Allfather (2:46)
4. The Feathered Consort (3:40)
5. Hammer on Hammer (3:09)
6. Wolf Unchained (4:58)
7. The Perfect One (3:51)
8. Trickster (and the Mistletoe) (3:01)
9. Cornucopia (3:53)
10. The Navigators (4:28)
11. Guardian's Watch (3:31)
12. Ithavoll (4:00)

Total Time 44:50

Line-up / Musicians

- Ian Anderson / vocals, concert & alto flutes, flute d'amour, Irish whistle
- Joe Parrish-James / electric & acoustic guitars, mandolin
- John O'Hara / keyboards, piano, Hammond organ
- David Goodier / bass
- Scott Hammond / drums

Releases information

Artwork, layout, design by Thomas Ewerhard

Label: InsideOut Music
Format: Vinyl, CD, Blu-ray, Digital
April 21, 2023

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to Dark Ness & NotAProghead for the last updates
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Buy JETHRO TULL RökFlöte Music

JETHRO TULL RökFlöte ratings distribution

(117 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(7%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(32%)
Good, but non-essential (47%)
Collectors/fans only (12%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

JETHRO TULL RökFlöte reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Necrotica
3 stars While The Zealot Gene was a decent record in its own right, I'm glad that it also served as a launchpad for Jethro Tull's overall resurgence. After all, prior to that album, we hadn't gotten a new record from them in nearly 20 years - and the handful of records they left off with were' not their greatest, let's say. So it's exciting to see them put their newfound momentum to good use, even if it's clear that their best days are behind them. And folks, let me tell you: R'kFl'te might just be the best Tull record since the early 80s. That's not to say that it doesn't have issues - and I'll address those in due time - but this new offering is the band's most inspired effort in several decades.

Unlike The Zealot Gene, which saw frontman Ian Anderson tackling more modern, relevant sociopolitical issues, R'kFl'te takes us into the realms of Norse paganism and mythology. The album title reflects this as well, as the 'R'k' in R'kFl'te refers to the famous mythological event Ragnar'k. So it's pretty safe to say that the Norse theming and imagery runs through much of the record, and indeed it does - and as if to match the concept itself, the music is much more folk-oriented than its predecessor. In fact, I'd go as far as to say that this is more of a folk rock album than a progressive rock one, though the latter's influence is certainly here as well. Anderson's flute work is all over the album, as are pastoral acoustic guitars and mandolins; this is especially evident on more traditional folk rock numbers such as 'Cornucopia', 'Trickster (and the Mistletoe)', and opener 'Voluspo' - all of which use the strengths of the band's 70s heyday to great effect.

A few of The Zealot Gene's key players return here, and in excellent form. Drummer Scott Hammond is especially praiseworthy here, as he seems to be capable of matching any stylistic shift thrown at him. Straightforward hard rock? Check. Traditional folk passages? Check. Crazy time signatures galore? Check. And, as he's been previously described as predominantly being a jazz drummer, he manages to add a pinch of fusion in the mix as well. 'Allfather' is a great example of his work on R'kFl'te, as he truly runs the gamut on this track: a complex folk-prog intro, simple 4/4 drumming in the middle, some aggressive hard rock touches here and there, and a nice folk-oriented reprise to cap things off. As for our new guitarist, he's quite promising as well. Joe Parrish-James - who was only involved in one song off The Zealot Gene - has taken up all electric guitar duties, and definitely shares former guitarist Martin Barre's penchant for incorporating several jazz and blues licks into his work. 'Wolf Unchained' and 'Hammer on Hammer', in particular, showcase him switching between hard rock riffs and blazing solos - though unfortunately, this does lead to the big issue of the record as a whole.

While R'kFl'te is much more consistent and focused than The Zealot Gene, Anderson hasn't quite reconciled the reunited band's folk and hard rock elements yet. He's getting closer to meshing them together properly, but - as with tracks such as the aforementioned 'Wolf Unchained' - the disconnect between the traditional folk bits and Parrish-James' muscular riffing is just a bit too jarring. Or, at least, it isn't as natural as on the band's best efforts from the 70s. All too often, there are moments of simplistic, faceless hard rock that seem to betray the interesting lyrical content and folk inclinations on offer; if Anderson and co. could somehow bridge those elements together more naturally, I think we could get something on par with the band's best work. In fact, as overambitious as it may seem today, I think Jethro Tull could really benefit from including a few mini-epics in their tracklists these days - songs that are given more time to grow and develop, rather than the lean 3- or 4- minute cuts that have populated their albums recently.

Regardless, I highly recommend R'kFl'te to anyone who's been waiting for a return to the more traditional folk- oriented side of Jethro Tull. Anderson seems to be getting closer and closer to the qualities that made the band's 70s output so special, while keeping the group relevant to modern prog audiences; I just hope that he keeps this momentum going for the next project. It's comforting to know that we still have a band carrying the torch for the original progressive rock scene, and that they're still willing to be vital and interesting in the 2020s. The result may not be perfect, but it remains an enjoyable and entertaining romp through old cultures and mythologies - all with a fun prog-rock twist. Mr. Anderson, I salute you.

Latest members reviews

3 stars OK, so this is the second album from Jethro Tull within the last 15 months, when it had been nearly 20 since their previous album before The Zealot Gene (2022). Overall, this new one is a fair bit better than Zealot Gene, with great flute work and some really nice instrumental sections. But I think ... (read more)

Report this review (#2936015) | Posted by BBKron | Tuesday, June 27, 2023 | Review Permanlink

3 stars JETHRO TULL is part of a dinosaur monster inscribed in the musical unconscious. He publishes his 24th album on his folk, world, country, prog rock vein; after his debut in 1967, a hiatus from 2012 to 2016 during which his guitarist Martin BARRE left, the vocalist Ian ANDERSON with his legendary ... (read more)

Report this review (#2923604) | Posted by alainPP | Wednesday, May 10, 2023 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Two years after their unimpressive return on The Zealot Gene, Jethro Tull is back with another record, RökFlöte. For this record, Ian Anderson stated he drew inspiration from Norse mythology, and the word "Ragnarök" is where he got the idea for this album's title. Each of the twelve songs on this al ... (read more)

Report this review (#2919875) | Posted by TheEliteExtremophile | Wednesday, April 26, 2023 | Review Permanlink

3 stars I don't think many people expected another album in such relatively short succession from Tull after they returned last year with "The Zealot Gene". But then again, this is Ian Anderson we are talking about. RokFlote definetely has much in common with the previous year's album, a comparison wh ... (read more)

Report this review (#2918666) | Posted by Kabajohnny | Friday, April 21, 2023 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Adapted from my DPRP review What are the highs and lows of RökFlöte, and will it be considered a winner, or a loser, by the band's supporters? On the evidence of its compositions, Jethro Tull have created a success that many Tullsters will adore. The album contains numerous aspects that co ... (read more)

Report this review (#2907763) | Posted by Owen D | Saturday, April 15, 2023 | Review Permanlink

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