Wednesday, May 5th, 2021
A (A La Mode) (The 40th Anniversary Edition)
May 05, 2021
By Hays Davis
While the 1980 album A may not rank as high on some Jethro Tull fans’ lists as career peaks such as 1971’s Aqualung or ’72’s Thick as a Brick, the 3-CD/3-DVD A (A La Mode) 40th anniversary edition offers an excellent platform for reevaluation. A was a transitional album that included a revamped Jethro Tull lineup, with new keyboardist/violinist Eddie Jobson (ex-Roxy Music, Frank Zappa) prominently featured. On what was originally planned as a solo album from singer/flautist Ian Anderson, longtime guitarist Martin Barre shines throughout, and tracks such as “Flyingdale Flyer” and “The Pine Marten’s Jig” are among the highlights.
As with the rest of the current Jethro Tull reissue series, the A La Mode edition is presented in a hardback book style, and its accompanying booklet provides a pleasing immersion that details the album through interviews, photos, and more. The CDs include a Steven Wilson stereo remix of A (Wilson was involved with the rest of the material as well), bonus tracks, and a full 1980 concert. Along with all audio recordings, the DVDs also include the “Slipstream” video, a period jewel that mixes live performances with conceptual videos. This is a fine set that offers those with even a passing interest in the band plenty to explore, while Jethro Tull fans will consider it essential. (www.jethrotull.com)
Author rating: 7/10
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