Jethro Tull
Stand Up


4.0
excellent

Review

by vanderb0b USER (63 Reviews)
August 7th, 2010 | 183 replies


Release Date: 1969 | Tracklist

Review Summary: By adding touches of various genres to their music and experimenting, Jethro Tull move one step closer to progressive rock and ten steps away from mediocrity.

Jethro Tull’s first album, This Was, was certainly an admirable debut and a very enjoyable listen. It served its purpose and established the band as a strong blues quintet. However, the album lacked diversity and, aside from Ian Anderson’s flute, not much separated Jethro Tull from the multitude of other competent blues ensembles. This, of course, was forgivable for the debut album, but it became clear that the band would have to establish their own distinctive, original style if they wanted to stand out amidst the hordes of other performers. And so, Anderson and his fellow troubadours began to experiment with a large variety of styles, while still remaining firmly rooted in blues-rock. This soon gave birth to the eclectic Stand Up, a fantastically multifaceted and lighthearted album that marks Jethro Tull’s pinnacle as a blues band.

Indeed, Stand Up’s songs are mainly divided into two distinct categories: pure, unadulterated hard-rockers and more unorthodox compositions. The former category consists of raw, boisterous tunes such as A New Day Yesterday and Driving Song. Filled with infectious, assertive riffs and jaunty flute leads, these tunes thrill and excite with ease. Martin Barre, the recently-initiated guitarist, adds a heavier and grittier edge to the bluesy songs, giving the band newfound vitality, and these upbeat tunes contain impossible amounts of energy and charisma.

And yet, Stand Up’s most interesting portions are those in which the band toys with various styles and tries to inject the tired and true blues formula with some vitality and originality. Innovative songs such as Fat Man, which sees the band flirting with lively sitars and Indian motifs, and Sweet Dream, with its tempo changes and breathtaking orchestral arrangements, see the band pushing their compositional and musical abilities to the very limits. Also worth noting is Bouree, a jazzy, wild reinterpretation of a piece by J.S. Bach that soon became a staple of the band’s live show and is still constantly performed to this day.

Only one song doesn't quite fall in either of the aforementioned categories: We Used To Know, the album’s most melodic and mournful tune. Wistful and nostalgic, it is one of Anderson’s finest folk songs, and features the singer’s best performance thus far, along with two majestic, electrifying guitar solos courtesy of “Le Barre”. On a historical note, The Eagles liked this song so much that they would record a (largely inferior) cover of it, changing the title to Hotel California.

On their second album, Jethro Tull draws inspiration from a wide spectrum of genres, ranging from classical, to blues, folk, and even Indian music. And yet, despite the sharp contrast between these influences, the album always never comes across as disorganized or disjointed-a fine achievement.

The next year, the band would release Benefit, which would see the band adopting a more serious and cynical tone and almost fully embracing folk music, and so Stand Up would be Anderson’s last blues project for a period of almost twenty years. The band would release a few more hard-rock albums in the 1980's, but, unfortunately, those offerings would never surpass the daring, eclectic Stand Up, which can safely be viewed as the band’s essential blues release.
4.2/5

Recommended Songs
We Used To Know
Bouree
A New Day Yesterday
Fat Man
Driving Song



Recent reviews by this author
Alfred Schnittke Gogol SuiteSoundtrack (Theatre) Sweeney Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Soundtrack (Theatre) Avenue Q - Original Broadway CastAJJ People Who Can Eat People are the Luckiest People
Ulcerate The Destroyers of AllCamille Saint-Saens Danse macabre, Op.40
user ratings (322)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
vanderb0b
August 7th 2010


3473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Eighth part of the Tull discography. Surprised this didn't already have a review, album slays. Took forever to write this.

Nagrarok
August 7th 2010


8547 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Well done, it's good to see I'm not the only one taking the effort to review albums from the good old days.

BludgeonySteve
August 7th 2010


558 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Oh man I haven't listened to Tull for years. What the hell is wrong with me? Anyway this album is off the hook, although I feel as if its posterity overshadows it, as do most people.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
August 7th 2010


26821 Comments


Great review, pos'd!

I'm currently enjoying Aqualung.

731
August 7th 2010


677 Comments


it's = it is

you misused it several times in this review

good review apart from that





vanderb0b
August 8th 2010


3473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks, everyone! Edited.



Glad you're liking Aqualung, JamieTwort, album slays

supertouchox2
August 8th 2010


1062 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Look into the Sun is just beautiful, lyrics and instrumentation are top notch on this album.

Jethro42
August 8th 2010


15141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

'We used to know' and 'Bouree' are the tits. 'A new day yesterday' is awesome, and still better on their live 'Bursting Out'

''..Nights of winter turn me cold, fears of dying, getting old, we ran the race and the race was won, by running slowly...''

I love the unavoidable 'Hotel California' reference. I think you owe me the allusion ; )

Have a pos for another excellent work, as always.

vanderb0b
August 8th 2010


3473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, A New Day sounds much better live, Barre's guitar tone is amazing and the keyboards fit in surprisingly well. Wish that they'd have played a bit more of the Bouree on Bursting Out, although. And thanks for the pos and for pointing out the similarity between We Used To Know and California a while back!

Jethro42
August 8th 2010


15141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Cheers, buddy.

Jethro42
August 8th 2010


15141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Oh, and 'Sweet Dream' has an incredible version on 'Living with the Past' DVD.

vanderb0b
August 9th 2010


3473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

The music video for that song is the cheesiest thing I've seen in a while:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22CNhROiFxs&feature=related

Jethro42
August 9th 2010


15141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

^oh my gosh^

much better when you close your eyes

vanderb0b
August 9th 2010


3473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Lol. Oh, and check this out:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qabCFbC-y8I

not half bad, actually

Jethro42
August 9th 2010


15141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

WoW! This is awesome, thank you for sharing.

vanderb0b
August 10th 2010


3473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, man, Maiden always did pretty good covers.



JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
April 22nd 2011


26821 Comments


A New Day Yesterday, Bouree, We Used To Know and Nothing Is Easy all rule hard.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
November 28th 2011


26821 Comments


I fucking love Hotel Califor... err I mean We Used To Know.

Jethro42
November 28th 2011


15141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

hahaha yes yes, long live THE original!

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
November 28th 2011


26821 Comments


Indeed.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy