The Metal Files

My Life. My Music. Your Voyeurism.

Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull) Concert Review, May 31, 2017, Austin, TX

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It’s a given that my older brother, Robert, was my music ambassador in the 70s and early 80s.  Most everything that he liked, I liked, too, and one of his top favorite bands was Jethro Tull.  I had to miss the version that played here a year or two ago because I had to be out of town but last night made up for it.  Basically the albums from “Benefit” to “War Child” hold a special place in my childhood memories, especially “Aqualung.”  That album is perfect front to back.

For whatever reason, I had it in my head that Ian mostly just played flute and guitar these days and had a singer handling most songs, but that was far from correct.

This was a no camera, no loud noises, no whistling (yes, this was requested by Ian himself).  As security is mentioning the rules as we  were walking in, I asked, “Are we allowed to look him in the eye?”  She laughed and said, “Get outta here!”  I had purchased a decent seat on the floor in middle section on the outer aisle but my back has been bothering me lately and sitting in those tiny uncomfortable seats was not going to do me any favors, so I stood off to the side along the wall as it feels way better on my back.  Fortunately security never said a word about it and it was on with the show.

The band comes on and opens with Living in the Past which I always loved but thought it sounded like a song you’d hear while watching a film in elementary school.  I’ll go ahead and say this right up front, Ian can’t really sing any more, but he tries.  At times you’d get that pure sound from him, but mostly it was just him trying to get it out.  Even then, it wasn’t really that bad, not at all.  They stuck close to the early 70s and a few late 60s numbers which was fine for this aged crowd…I include myself in that moniker.  It’s no surprise that his backup band was incredible, especially his bass player.  Man, that guy was awesome.

While Ian’s voice may not be what it was, his flute playing was just fine as was his acoustic guitar playing, although it seemed that there was some canned guitar work going on.  They were obviously playing to some sort of click or backing track as every song was synced up to a backing video.  Didn’t really matter.  I thoroughly enjoyed the show and it was great seeing some good friends there.  They played most everything I wanted to hear except Cross Eyed Mary, Bungle in the Jungle and Fat Man (my theme song?).  I was super happy that they played Farm on the Freeway from “Crest of a Knave.”  I’ve always loved that album even though it really sounds more dated than the 70s stuff.

While it was an older crowd, they weren’t too old to rock and roll. :)

Written by The Metal Files

June 1, 2017 at 8:25 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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