JETHRO TULL

(UNITED KINGDOM)

STAND UP

(1969)
LABEL:

CHRYSALIS

GENRE:

ROCK

TAGS:
Low vocals, Old School, Opera-Rock, Theatrical
"Even if "Stand Up" is only the second album of the band, it is the real baptism act of Jethro Tull."
CORTO1809 (21.10.2011)  
4/5
(0) opinions (0) comment(s)
If "This Was" was suffering from the artistic differences of its two potential leaders, the problem is solved with "Stand Up". Indeed, the guitarist Mick Abrahams went to found the blues band Blodwin Pigs, leaving Ian Anderson as the only master on board. To replace him, the latter has recruited Martin Barre who will henceforth play the role of the guitarist on all Jethro Tull's albums which have been released so far.

With "Stand Up", Ian Anderson definitively turns the page of the blues (only 'Nothing Is Easy' is still linked to this period) to open the rock's one, even hardrock's one. And he takes advantage of it to print what will be from now on his trademark: a rather low nasal voice, with a slightly theatrical diction, giving to the song frequent sarcastic or ironic intonations, a great eclecticism in the choice of his compositions and the use of the transverse flute as a lead instrument. Anderson's playing is very particular and deviates from the canons of the genre. Far from the pastoral sweetness usually associated with the use of the flute, Ian Anderson makes it a fighting instrument, with a particularly percussive and aggressive sound, thanks to a technique he has invented as a perfect self-taught person, the over-blowing, a process consisting in saturating the sound of the flute by blowing very hard in it. Moreover, he does not hesitate to take back his breath noisily and shamelessly, pushes cries and inarticulate grunts while playing, giving to each passage of flute a recognizable "patte" between them all.

Just listen to 'Bourée', the band's unavoidable hit, to be convinced of the efficiency of the process. Ian Anderson does not fear to appropriate a piece of Jean-Sebastian Bach, initially written for the lute, in order to transform it into a hybrid work, half classical, half rock, the charm of the beginning and the end of the title framing the unbridled madness of the central part. A real success. But the interest of "Stand Up" does not lie in this only title. The album is amazingly diverse and touches on many styles with equal happiness for most of the tracks: Zeppelin-like hard rock to open the ball ('A New Day Yesterday'), folk ('Jeffrey Goes To Leicester Square'), classical ('Bourée'), mid-tempo rock ('Back To The Family'), intimacy ('Look Into The Sun'), blues ('Nothing Is Easy') or ethnic ('Fat Man'), these two last ones constituting the soft belly of the album and Jethro Tull succeeding the challenge in keeping despite everything a homogeneous style.

Besides 'Bourée', "Stand Up"discloses within it the seeds of a future hit: apart from the fact that 'We Used To Know' is a very beautiful ballad which slowly goes up in power, it is hardly necessary to be an informed music lover to recognize there more than a vague resemblance, at least on the verses, with the famous 'Hotel California' of the Eagles which will be released seven years later. Don Henley was in the wake of Tull when he played in the first part of the concerts for Led Zeppelin. This probably explains it...

Led Zeppelin, Eagles, Bach and sometimes a bit of Cat Stevens: an improbable melting-pot of styles that generates a unique sound, a signature with an easily identifiable personality. Even if "Stand Up" is only the second album of the band, it is the real baptism act of Jethro Tull.
- Official website

TRACK LISTING:
01. A New Day Yesterday – 4:10
02. Jeffrey Goes To Leicester Square – 2:12
03. Bourée – 3:46
04. Back To The Family – 3:48
05. Look Into The Sun – 4:20
06. Nothing Is Easy – 4:25
07. Fat Man – 2:52
08. We Used To Know – 3:59
09. Reasons For Waiting – 4:05
10. For A Thousand Mothers – 4:13
11. Living In The Past (bonus) – 3:23
12. Driving Song (bonus) – 2:44
13. Sweet Dream (bonus) – 4:05
14. 17 (bonus) – 3:07

LINEUP:
Clive Bunker: Batterie / Percussions
Glenn Cornick: Basse
Ian Anderson: Chant / Guitares / Flûte, Harmonica, Orgue Hammond, Piano, Mandoline, Balalaïka
Martin Barre: Guitares / Flûte (2, 9)
   
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