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J-Tull Dot Com

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Album Review

With 1995's Roots to Branches, Jethro Tull signed a sixth lease on life by absorbing the ethnic sounds of India and the Middle and Far East. Ian Anderson was camouflaging his failing voice with fluting that was better than ever and with songs that suited his singing range. Jethro Tull follows up Roots to Branches with J-Tull Dot Com, a title that advertises both the band's new website and Anderson's newfound Internet prowess. The band has made a career of blending rock with jazz, blues, classical, and folk, and it would seem that the globetrotting Roots to Branches, along with Anderson's solo album from the same year, Divinities: Twelve Dances With God, would point to a full-time obsession with world music. But now the band abandons some of the world sounds in favor of songs that are more straightforward and lacking in variety, and unlike Roots to Branches, J-Tull Dot Com fails to excite with the first listen. While not as memorable as the previous effort, the album still delivers standard Jethro Tull: Anderson's flute, Martin Barre's crunchy guitar, and the wide-reaching keys of Andrew Giddings support Ian's ever-weakening voice, which he imposes onto every song. Once again Tull's capable hard rock is alternately ornamented, twiddly, and heavy-handed, so after repeated listens Tull fans should be satisfied.

Biography

Formed: 1967 in Luton, Bedfordshire, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Jethro Tull were a unique phenomenon in popular music history. Their mix of hard rock; folk melodies; blues licks; surreal, impossibly dense lyrics; and overall profundity defied easy analysis, but that didn't dissuade fans from giving them 11 gold and five platinum albums. At the same time, critics rarely took them seriously, and they were off the cutting edge of popular music since the end of the 1970s. But no record store in the country would want to be without multiple copies of each of their...
Full bio
J-Tull Dot Com, Jethro Tull
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