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Jethro Tull - Songs From The Wood CD (album) cover


Jethro Tull


Prog Folk

4.18 | 1367 ratings

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Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer
2 stars Chipper, upbeat, woodsy, and very folksy, Songs From the Wood shows Tull playing unambitious but still enjoyable tunes with an exceptionally pastoral feel, trading almost every hint of heavy electric blues for sprightly merriment dancing atop green hills at solstice time within sight of the old standing stones.

Sounds ridiculous, and it really is. There isn't much in the songwriting or instrumental department to make this album stand out-- especially compared to other Tull albums; however, Songs From the Wood does possess a very strong and unique minstrel tone which is not without its charm. The title track is one of the highlights, with a distinctive Ian Anderson vocal perforamnce to set the tone and a comparatively intriguing rhythm from the band. "Jack of the Green" is a low-key acoustic piece, nice but not accomplishing much other than letting Anderson indluge himself, which is pretty much the name of the game until "Velvet Green" comes up, which lets the band dig in a try a few interesting things with their instruments. The very fun and dynamic "Whistler" is a standout track, though the album as a whole passes by in a sort of medieval-malaise-- with narry an interesting flute solo to be found. The lengthiest track, "Pibroch", feels like a failed experiment, losing steam despite numerous classic-prog refinements and an epic palette of sounds.

The whimsical feel of the album and the prevalence of Anderson's highly inflected vocals make this sound more like a solo album than a Jethro Tull album; this is practically a display of Anderson's self-absorbed minstrelry. Still, there is enough of that old prog fire left in the band to appeal to fans, especially those in need of a hot cup of tea beneath autumn bowers to the sound of pan flutes. Not bad, but not especially good either.

Songwriting: 2 Instrumental Performances: 2 Lyrics/Vocals: 3 Style/Emotion/Replay: 3

Prog Leviathan | 2/5 |


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