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Jethro Tull - Aqualung CD (album) cover


Jethro Tull


Prog Folk

4.36 | 2707 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Possibly Tull's most well-known album and a staple of classic rock. indeed, this is a very good album. But is it one of their best? Well, that's hard to say. They definitely have performed better and more innovative works (TAAB, APP, Songs from the Wood.), but this is a solid album in their catalogue that manages to elucidate a general overlook of Tull's sound.

1. Aqualung- This is probably the track that many people think of when they hear the name Jethro Tull.a well-composed track with dirty and efficient instrumental work, great lyrics and vocals by Anderson, and plenty of memorable, wonderful segments. What a song! My favorite part is the piano with Anderson's distant vocals. 9/10

2. Cross-Eyed Mary- Opening with an awesome flute part, this is another good Tull rocker with fantastic lyrics, vocals, and instrumentation. I really like how so much can be packed into one song in such a concise format particularly on this album; this song shows that exceptionally. 10/10

3. Cheap Day Return- Well-written and enjoyable acoustic song where Anderson partially discusses visiting his father in the hospital and his encounter with a nurse where she inappropriately asked for his autograph. Great tune. 9/10

4. Mother Goose- This is a heavily acoustic song with some interesting flute parts interjected. It's really another solid song, but it's not as genius as what came before it. Nonetheless, it's enjoyable, well-written, well-played, and full of Anderson's cynical and humorous lyrics. 8/10

5. Wond'ring Aloud- Another really good acoustic song, this time with some piano towards the end. I like the mood to this one and it's really pleasant to hear. 9/10

6. Up to Me- Another solid song, but like Mother Goose this one isn't absolutely perfect. I like the interplay between the instruments but the structure is a bit too simplified to warrant masterpiece status. Good piece though. 7/10

7. My God- Now here is another masterful, explorative piece. This is definitely the highlight of the album (or one of them), with an awesome acoustic opening building into a haunting riff whereupon Anderson gives out some of his best lyrics to date. The way this song is structured and performed is genius, and the flute solo that Anderson utilizes in the middle of the composition is stunning. This is Tull at their best. 10/10

8. Hymn 43- This is a really good song with some interesting keyboard playing and instrumental interplay. It's more straight-forward but has a twisted rock hymn feel to it. The lyrics again are notable and the song is heavily enjoyable. 9/10

9. Slipstream- The last of the trilogy of acoustic pieces on this album. I like them all about equally and they're all masterfully-crafted acoustic songs despite only being about a minute in length. How can a song mainly played on acoustic guitar and vocals be so great? This continues to show you how. 9/10

10. Locomotive Breath- After a soothing piano intro that almost feels a bit like a ragtime piece, this song breaks into a repetitive yet effective rocker. It goes in the same pile for me as Mother Goose and Up to Me, where the songs are still extremely good, the musicianship is notable, and everything flows exceptionally but the songs barely reach masterpiece status. The train-like rhythm of this song is effective. 8/10

11. Wind-Up- This is a controversial closer. I really like it and I think it's definitely a brave, experimental way to end this album. The lyrics continue Anderson's cynical commentary on organized religion and the story-like structure of this song works well in complement. 9/10

This is a REALLY good album with some of Anderson's best lyrics, compositions, and a great overall effort from the band that really deserves the attention that it gets. It is not quite a masterpiece, however, and Tull managed to create those in the forms of other albums that were to follow.

You still have probably heard this album; if you haven't, it is highly recommended as an excellent addition to your collection.

MovingPictures07 | 4/5 |


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