domingo, 26 de julio de 2009

Jethro Tull - Too Old To Rock'n'Roll, Too Young To Die (1976)

This album was summarily dismissed by reviewers, who universally invoked their handbooks of hackneyed "critic speak." Cop-out terms like "indulgent" and "pretentious" were bandied about, employing the popular critic's method of simply discrediting an album due to its concurrent release with the arrival of punk-rock- - as if that were an intellectually sound critique given the virtually unrelated style of Jethro Tull's music. The main knock on this album is the ill-conceived concept involving an aging rock star. That is a valid observation, but what rock concept albums are deserving of literary accolades? Precious few, if any.

Lyrical themes notwithstanding, Too Old to Rock 'N' Roll... is a fine collection of independent rock songs that marked a return to the classic Tull style carved out on Aqualung and Benefit. Absent here are the muddled epic-length pieces synonymous with Thick As a Brick and A Passion Play, the pop leanings of War Child, and the complexity of Minstrel in the Gallery. So despite being the target of disparaging reviews, this album achieved modest chart success and boasted several quality rockers like "Quizz Kid," "Taxi Grab," and "Big Dipper." Martin Barre's unheralded lead guitar style remains a force, rescuing a couple of tracks from the doldrums. David Palmer's orchestral arrangements are, at times, a bit overblown but this album is far from the colossal disaster it's been portrayed as. Jethro Tull's third bassist John Glascock made his debut on this record, and Maddy Prior makes a guest appearance on the title track.

In October of 2002, EMI issued a remastered and expanded edition of this album, with killer sound and a pair of pleasantly folky, albeit unambitious bonus tracks from the same sessions, "A Small Cigar" and "Strip Cartoon" -- the latter is especially cheerful and will especially please guitar buffs with its mix of Anderson's glittering acoustic guitar and Martin Barre's crunchy electric lead playing.

~ Dave Sleger, All Music Guide


1. Quizz Kid – 5:09
2. Crazed Institution – 4:48
3. Salamander – 2:51
4. Taxi Grab – 3:54
5. From A Dead Beat To An Old Greaser – 4:09
6. Bad-Eyed 'N' Loveless – 2:12
7. Big Dipper – 3:35
8. Too Old to Rock And Roll, Too Young to Die – 5:44
9. Pied Piper – 4:32
10. The Chequered Flag (Dead Or Alive) – 5:32

Bonus tracks:

The remastered CD added bonus tracks and extensive liner notes:

"A Small Cigar" – 3:39
"Strip Cartoon" – 3:19

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