Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Jethro Tull - 1993 25th Anniversary [4 CD Box]

25th Anniversary Box Set is a 1993 limited edition box set by Jethro Tull. It includes some of the band's best-known compositions from 1969 to 1992, many of them previously unavailable in the versions presented here. It was the second Jethro Tull box-set in five years, the first being the 3CD/ 5LP/ 3Cassette 20 Years of Jethro Tull.

Four CDs
 The CDs are housed in a mock cigar-box, along with a booklet featuring extensive notes and photographs, sealed with a label bearing an image of Ian Anderson.
The four CDs are:
  • Remixed Classic Songs: remixes some older tracks (77:06)
  • Carnegie Hall, N.Y., Recorded Live New York City 1970: benefit concert for Phoenix House to rehabilitate drug abusers. This CD omits "By Kind Permission Of" and "Dharma For One", due to CD time constraints. Both can be found on the Living In The Past compilation. This performance was later released again in an expanded edition of Stand Up. (60:28)
  • The Beacons Bottom Tapes: new recordings, mostly of older tracks (71:07) 
  • Pot Pourri, Live Across The World & Through The Years: live (1969–1992) (77:43) 
Where the first Jethro Tull box five years earlier, 20 Years of Jethro Tull, mostly traded on radio broadcast performances and rarities, a few outtakes, and a remastered collection of key songs, 25th Anniversary Boxed Set benefits from a more thorough raid on the vaults that has yielded up one essential addition to any Jethro Tull collection. Disc two is the centerpiece of the set, containing an additional hour of the group's November 4, 1970 concert at Carnegie Hall in New York (two pieces were previously issued on Living in the Past). Preserved on a 16-track master tape, this benefit show for the drug rehabilitation program Phoenix House was the group's most prominent American gig up to that time. It's a good representation of what the band sounded like in its second incarnation, when they were still establishing themselves outside of England. The group had still not reached -- or even approached -- its progressive rock period, and the sound is very stripped down, a pounding mix of hard rock, acoustic folk music, jazz elements, and Ian Anderson's vocals, alternately sage-like and fierce; some of the flute acrobatics don't translate too well to tape, even in Carnegie Hall, but the transition from "Sossity, You're a Woman" into "Reasons for Waiting" -- featuring exquisite organ playing by John Evan -- is beautiful enough as to make up for the flaws elsewhere, as well as reminding listeners of one of the more hauntingly beautiful songs in the group's early repertory; they also unveil a song that was still, by Anderson's own account, a work-in-progress, entitled "My God." Disc one is comprised of 16 songs from across the group's history, from their single "My Sunday Feeling" in 1968 to "Broadsword" in 1982, all in remixed versions with some fresh nips and tucks by the engineers who generally make the music sound hotter and push the percussion and the guitar solos further into the foreground; those are interesting listening, but an audiophile hits collection of the original mixes would have been preferred. Disc three features the then-current lineup of the group in a live performance from 1992, documenting their latest approach to songs ranging across 24 years of their history -- they're professional and polished (and loud), but not as interesting as the original versions. Finally, Disc four is this set's companion to the 20th anniversary set's disc of radio performances, drawing from various additional radio appearances and other live venues -- opening with the loud, bluesy "To Be Sad Is a Mad Way to Be" (which is a definite throwback to the This Was album), the music advances across the decades, crossing the 1970s with a three-minute excerpt from A Passion Play into a medley of Aqualung material and on to their various 1980s incarnations and repertory, by which time Martin Barre is pretty much sharing the spotlight with (if not outright stealing it from) Anderson -- the most interesting moment is the "Passion Jig," an instrumental piece salvaged and adapted from part of A Passion Play, which is a clever way of reviving music from a concept album whose complete presence was no longer required. The entire package comes in a container designed to resemble a cigar box, with a profusely illustrated and annotated 46-page booklet. The only problem is that the box doesn't really stay shut with the catch that's installed on it, and the internal pockets holding the CDs are a bit shoddy, made of cardboard that is much too fragile and eventually broke or ripped on many copies.  

A really nice box set, albeit for the hardcore fan and not the newbie. Disc One consists of more modern mixes of old standards, and while some (Minstrel, Life is a Long Song) are admirable, I can take or leave this disc. Disc two is the live show from 1970, absolute perfection! Disc 3 has the band live in studio playing some of the classic songs in a new way. The dynamic Jack-A-Lynn, the intsrumentals of "The Whistler", "Cheerio",  and "Protect and Survive", along with a stirring performance of "My God" are the highlights. Disc 4 contains various live performances through the years, highlighted by a powerful and amazing Passion Play edit.

Track listing

Disc One
Remixed Classic Songs

 

  1. "My Sunday Feeling"
  2. "A Song for Jeffrey"
  3. "Living in the Past"
  4. "Teacher"
  5. "Sweet Dream"
  6. "Cross-Eyed Mary"
  7. "Witch's Promise"
  8. "Life Is a Long Song"
  9. "Bungle in the Jungle"
  10. "Minstrel in the Gallery"
  11. "Cold Wind to Valhalla"
  12. "Too Old to Rock 'n' Roll: Too Young to Die!"
  13. "Songs from the Wood"
  14. "Heavy Horses"
  15. "Black Sunday"
  16. "Broadsword"

Disc Two
Carnegie Hall, N.Y. Recorded Live New York City 1970

 

  1. "Nothing Is Easy"
  2. "My God"
  3. "With You There to Help Me"
  4. "A Song for Jeffrey"
  5. "To Cry You a Song"
  6. "Sossity: You're a Woman"
  7. "Reasons for Waiting"
  8. "We Used to Know"
  9. "Guitar Solo"
  10. "For a Thousand Mothers"

Disc Three
The Beacons Bottom Tapes

 

  1. "So Much Trouble"
  2. "My Sunday Feeling"
  3. "Some Day the Sun Won't Shine for You"
  4. "Living in the Past"
  5. "Bourée" (Instrumental)
  6. "With You There to Help Me"
  7. "Thick As a Brick"
  8. "Cheerio"
  9. "A New Day Yesterday"
  10. "Protect and Survive" (Instrumental)
  11. "Jack-A-Lynn"
  12. "The Whistler" (Instrumental)
  13. "My God"
  14. "Aqualung"

Disc Four
Pot Pourri Live Across The World & Through The Years

 

  1. "To Be Sad Is a Mad Way to Be" (Recorded at Stockholm Concert Hall, Stockholm – 19 January 1969)
  2. "Back to the Family" (Recorded at Stockholm Concert Hall, Stockholm – 19 January 1969)
  3. "A Passion Play (Extract)" (Recorded at Palais des Sports, Paris – 5 July 1975)
  4. "Wind-Up / Locomotive Breath / Land of Hope and Glory" (Recorded at Golders Green Hippodrome, London – 2 February 1977)
  5. "Seal Driver" (Recorded at Congress Centrum, Hamburg – 8 April 1982)
  6. "Nobody's Car" (Recorded at Hammersmith Apollo, London – 9 September 1984)
  7. "Pussy Willow" (Recorded at Hammersmith Apollo, London – 9 September 1984)
  8. "Budapest" (Recorded at Leysin Festival, Leysin – 10 July 1991)
  9. "Nothing Is Easy" (Recorded at Leysin Festival, Leysin – 10 July 1991)
  10. "Kissing Willie" (Recorded at Tallinn Festival, Tallinn – 20 July 1991)
  11. "Still Loving You Tonight" (Recorded at Hammersmith Apollo, London – 8 October 1991)
  12. "Beggar's Farm" (Recorded at Beasley Theater Quad, Pullman – 24 October 1992)
  13. "Passion Jig" (Instrumental) (Recorded at Riviera Theater, Chicago – 10 October 1992)
  14. "A Song for Jeffrey" (Recorded at Riviera Theater, Chicago – 11 October 1992)
  15. "Living in the Past" (Recorded at Theatre St. Denis, Montreal – 9 November 1992)
Line-up / Musicians
DISC 1:
- Ian Anderson / flute, mouth organ, claghorn, piano, vocals, harmonica, mandolin
- Mick Abrahams / guitar, 9-string guitar, vocals (1 - 2)
- Clive Bunker / drums, hooter and charm bracelet (1 - 7)
- Glenn Cornick / bass (1 - 5 and 7)
- Martin Barre / electric guitar, marimba (3 - 16)
- Barriemore Barlow / drums, percussion (8 - 14)
- Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond / bass (6 and 8 - 11)
- John Glascock / bass, vocals (12 - 14)
- John Evans / piano (4 and 7 - 14)
- Mark Craney / drums (15)
- Gerry Conway / drums, percussion (16)
- Peter-John Vettese / piano, synthesizer (16)
- Dave Pegg / bass, mandolins, vocals (15 - 16)
- David Palmer / keyboards, orchestra conductor (13 - 14)

DISC 2:
- Ian Anderson / flute, mouth organ, claghorn, piano, vocals, harmonica, mandolin
- Clive Bunker / drums, hooter and charm bracelet
- Glenn Cornick / bass
- Martin Barre / electric guitar, marimba
- John Evans / piano

DISC 3:
- Ian Anderson / flute, mouth organ, harmonica, mandolin (1 - 7, 9 and 11 - 14)
- Martin Barre / electric guitar, marimba (2, 6 - 7 and 9 - 14)
- Dave Pegg / bass, mandolins, vocals (2, 6 - 9 and 11 - 14)
- Andy Giddings / keyboards (2, 5 - 7, 9 and 11 - 14)
- Doane Perry / drums (2, 6 - 7, 9 and 11 - 14)

DISC 4:
- Ian Anderson / flute, mouth organ, claghorn, piano, vocals, harmonica, mandolin
- Martin Barre / electric guitar, marimba
- Clive Bunker / drums, hooter and charm bracelet (1 - 2)
- Glenn Cornick / bass (1 - 2)
- Barriemore Barlow / drums, percussion (3 - 4)
- John Evans / piano (3 - 4)
- Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond / bass (3)
- John Glascock / bass, vocals (4)
- David Palmer / keyboards, orchestra conductor (4)
- Dave Pegg / bass, mandolins, vocals (6 - 15)
- Gerry Conway / drums, percussion (5)
- Peter-John Vettese / piano, synthesizer (6 - 7)
- Doane Perry / drums (6 - 11)
- Martin Allcock / mandolin, keyboards (8 - 11)
- Dave Mattacks / drums (12 - 15)
- Andy Giddings / keyboards (12 - 15)


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