Gerald Bostock must be nearly 50 by now
March 3, 2012 8:27 PM   Subscribe

March 10, 2012 will mark the 40th anniversary of the release of Jethro Tull's Thick As A Brick album, their first ever #1 album in the US. (Previously, sadly the "very extensive packaging" newspaper link has rotted, but a replacement has happily been found.) And April 2, 2012 will see the release of Thick As A Brick II.

Whatever happened to Gerald Bostock, the precocious 8-year-old who wrote the lyrics for the seminal prog-rock album from 1972? Ian Anderson was pondering this question and has come up with an epic answer, which will be explored in a new album-length song recorded with his current touring band. (Anderson is fully conscious that this is a risky proposition, but is moving forward with it because, well, because he wants to.)

The new album, suitably titled Thick As A Brick 2, was written and recorded over the past year or so, and has been engineered by Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree, who also oversaw the recent remix-and-rerelease (in 5.1 surround) of Aqualung. [Not to be confused with the original Quad release of Aqualung, which is outstanding in its own right.] Although 17 tracks are listed, the piece is conceived as a coherent whole and the tracks are merely there for the iTunes Generation to use to grab bits and pieces if they so choose.

Luckily, Ian Anderson has conducted an extensive interview with Ian Anderson about this new release, in four parts, about 45m, which gives a lot of details about writing, recording, performing, and other stuff about the album. Part 1 2 3 4 [yes, some segments are mis-labeled in YouTube]

Not only has The Brick been Thickened, but also the accompanying material. The famous St. Cleve Chronicle newspaper has, like all other media, become a website, with many sections and articles to explore.

The son of the original St. Cleve reviewer of the 1972 Tull album has surfaced with his assessment of the 2012 release.

Anderson and his band are about to embark on an extensive world tour [Ed. note: I assume more US dates will be forthcoming.], playing the entire 1972 album plus the entire 2012 album during each show. (This marks the first time since the original TAAB tour that all 45 minutes of it will be rendered live on stage. How exactly did that go 40 years ago? You can see for yourself via this mini-documentary about the recording and touring of that album: Part 1, 2)

But whatever did happen to Gerald Bostock? Well, he has a twitter account and a Facebook page, so perhaps you can find out for yourself.
posted by hippybear (72 comments total) 26 users marked this as a favorite
I am quite fond of Thick as a Brick and this news has me apprehensive.
posted by kenko at 8:31 PM on March 3, 2012 [4 favorites]

Yeah, I'm overly fond of Thick As A Brick and this news has me curious, and wanting to pay to see it played live, and willing to walk out after the first half if the new album sucks.
posted by hippybear at 8:36 PM on March 3, 2012

Four years ago, an 18 year old guy I was working with told me he went to see the most amazing performance... tickets were tough to come by, and his girlfriend at the time was astonished he had the connection to score great seats.

He went to see Jethro Tull.

I could only imagine that I had the same sort of poker-face my Dad did in the late '80s when I announced that "Songs from the Woods" was one of my favorite tracks of all time.

Some '60s music aged incredibly quickly, becoming unlistenable dreck or pure nostalgia-bait from the moment the record was pressed. Others, well, they linger, they intertwine, they become our culture, and we can't imagine a world without a flautist, desperate and out of breath, moaned as he gasped for air, a slave for the transcendant music animating him, before rocketing off again with an extended flute solo...

... and I look around, and I don't see anyone willing to take those kinds of chances with those kinds of instruments in rock and roll these days. Except maybe the Roots, because they have a tuba who kinda rocks.
posted by Slap*Happy at 8:39 PM on March 3, 2012 [4 favorites]

Brick Thicker
posted by Trurl at 8:40 PM on March 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

I'm imagining someone explaining to their friend that their new favorite album has only one song on it, and then going on to say that it's chiefly flute-based.

I do love Thick as a Brick but it's kinda weird, right?
posted by shakespeherian at 8:48 PM on March 3, 2012

I burned out on Tull really badly in the mid-80's & I gave all my vinyl away, including the original pressing of Stand Up, with the pop-up fold out band in the middle to a young kid who was a huge fan. I never really felt bad about that because I made him so happy -- potlatches are cool -- but I have finally gone back & re-acquired pretty much all the old catalog on CD in the last couple years, and am definitely not burned out any more.

I had completely forgotten that some real gems even existed, like With You There To Help Me & A New Day Yesterday. Thick As A Brick was a serious high-water mark, though. I just can't hear Aqualung any more, which is just the way it goes, but TAAB is enjoying a renaissance in my headphones as I type. It seems more jammy & not so stilted as a lot of prog. They're stretching out a bit & it flows well. There's movement, and it feels like big, low waves.

And... oh holy shit, I just read this after typing the above: and has been engineered by Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree,

omfgwharbgrbl! Must. Have.
posted by Devils Rancher at 8:59 PM on March 3, 2012

Somewhere I have a photo I took of Ian Anderson in concert in 1972, it's so close up and sharp that you can see every drop of sweat. I looked for it but I can't find it. Damn.
posted by charlie don't surf at 9:04 PM on March 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

"God is an overwhelming responsibility!"
posted by Devils Rancher at 9:16 PM on March 3, 2012

Knew a guy who was obsessed with Jehtro Tull in college.

Weirdest motherfucker evar.
posted by bardic at 9:20 PM on March 3, 2012 [2 favorites]

Many years ago a young me discovered Thick As a Brick via other Tull albums such as Under Wraps (easily the worst album by anybody ever, so I was lucky to have given them the benefit of the doubt) Benefit (my first because my Dad had it), then Aqualung which goes without saying is a fan-fucking-tastic album. I had already dabbled with concept albums like Quadrophenia (brilliant but kind of meh at the same time), early Genesis (Trick of the Tale, if you can't this as Genesis without Peter Gabriel, and not really all that conceptual compared to previous material), Yes (which to my mind is more about "look at how different we sound from all the others! We're amazing!" which they are, but still...meh - as a side note, when I saw Yes in Vancouver well after their prime, Jon Anderson said the.stupidest.thing.ever: "When we were discussing the tour in my garden, there were two flags flying, one of Japan and one of British Columbia!" roar of adoring fans ensued and me saying, "What, did he just say the most inane thing ever? And these people lapped it up? Huh?"). But anyway, I digress. I somehow missed ELP's albums but certainly knew their more popular tracks - wow!

So, I regularly listened to music as I fell asleep, as this was really the only time in my day to listen. Into my cassette player goes Thick As A Brick for the first time and I'm tired after a long hard day at school and it's late and a school night and I'm really not sure if I can deal with Ian Anderson's unique vocal gymnastics and Ian's voice tells me, right off the bat, that it's okay, he really doesn't mind if I sit this one....out.


Well, that's kind of interesting. Why would I want to sit this one out? Are you trying to trick me, Ian? No way am I sitting this one out, now that you've told me it's okay. And don't think for a second, Ian, that you've fooled me - I know that it's a hook to drag me into the song. Well played, sir, well played.

And young me, tired but suddenly wired, hears the big hook: and your wise men don't know how it feels to be a brick. I don't know what it means exactly, but oh yes, it's so true, you guys have no idea what it feels like to be me.

I still don't know what the damn song means. Yeah, I've analyzed it. Did my best to read the album cover on my little cassette. It's sure interesting!

The two words that I always remember most from TAAB are "moral melee". And the first time I heard it I thought to myself, ah, so that's how you pronounce melee. To this day, to me, that's what the song is about, the moral melee.

I have no need to listen to TAAB2. As mentioned above, I'm apprehensive. There is simply no way it can meet my expectations. I'm not going out of my way to listen to it, but if I happen to hear a slice, and you can bet it'll be on Radio Paradise if it's any good so I'll hear it, I won't mind if I'm pleasantly surprised. Speaking of Radio Paradise, that's where I heard Reasons for Waiting from Tull's album Stand Up. What a song!
posted by ashbury at 9:23 PM on March 3, 2012 [3 favorites]

Ya know what?
I have never heard TAAB and am so far removed from any cultural baggage surrounding it that I bet I can check it out now totally fresh and free of all that that surrounds it.

I think I shall exercise this option tonight. Thanks!
posted by Senor Cardgage at 9:27 PM on March 3, 2012

I never got into this album that much, during my maximum Tull years, which is really odd, considering how much I loved (arguably) lesser albums, like War Child and Stormwatch. I'll give it another try. If Ian wants to serve up a second helping, I'm there.

Also, in before flute hate
posted by thelonius at 10:08 PM on March 3, 2012

Wow, Anderson looks like Walter White now
posted by thelonius at 10:09 PM on March 3, 2012

I went through a time back in college when I made a point to listen to Thick As A Brick at least once a week. I can still play that opening riff on the guitar and I could probably rattle off an alarming chunk of the lyrics to you right now (I could probably sing along to the whole thing). It's a really neat album. I was never really big on any other proggy-type band, not even Pink Floyd, but I dug the hell out of JT. I think it was their apparent sense of humor and willingness to take the piss. I mean, the whole reason they did TAAB was because someone called Aqualung a concept record and Anderson thought "well hell, I'll give 'em a dang concept record!"

If you were to press me (and really, why would you?), I'd probably say that Minstrel in the Gallery is my favorite Tull album. Side B of Heavy Horses is also really great. My dad's a huge fan and I'm pretty sure Tull was my first concert way back when. I've seen 'em live maybe six or seven times. Ian Anderson is a pretty great frontman.
posted by Maaik at 10:21 PM on March 3, 2012

Minstrel is great, yeah.
posted by thelonius at 10:23 PM on March 3, 2012

for 2012: Thick as a Bricked iPhone
posted by evilmidnightbomberwhatbombsatmidnight at 10:30 PM on March 3, 2012

Yeah, well, I need an update on Ray Lomas. Is he still riding down the queen's highway, handing out his small cigars to the kids from school?
posted by codswallop at 10:43 PM on March 3, 2012 [1 favorite]

In college, I spent a summer in a top-floor corner dorm-room on the southwest coner of Washington Square, with a roommate who would ALWAYS play Thick as a Brick as we were cooking dinner.

I love that album.
posted by Navelgazer at 10:48 PM on March 3, 2012

A twelve year old weighs in (circa April 1972).

We’re in the living room with Jethro Tull loud on the stereo, an album called Thick As A Brick, which is all just one long song, guitars and organs and flutes, and words about poets and painters and soldiers and heroes, and wise men who don’t know how it feels to be thick as a brick. Drake says it’s a masterpiece, the best album of the year, maybe all time. And maybe it is. Or maybe I’m just stoned, second time in my life, weird sweet stuff sort of bubbling through me, making me notice stuff like how different everything is from the last time I was here, crazy party everywhere and incense and candles, but now it's just normal lights showing normal dirt and dust, and burns and stains on the carpet, and a big crack in the wall by the kitchen, and everything smells a bit like garbage, like someone forgot to take it out this week.

But I love it.

Like how cool it would be if my place was like this, just throw down on the living room rug with the best records in the world all spread out around you, pictures and colours and faces and names like Captain Beefheart and The Oblivion Express and Tarkus and Cosmos Factory and Exile on Main Street. But the one I pick up is Thick As A Brick because it's like a whole newspaper, pages and headlines and stories, and the front page has a picture of this little kid all dressed up nice in a jacket and tie, and the crazy thing is, he looks kind of like pictures of me when I was seven or eight, all serious and just looking into me like he knows some secret and I should know it too, except there's all these adults around him and he's trying to keep it from them, particularly this one man who looks like some kind of businessman, and he's handing the kid a piece of paper, like maybe that's a different secret, but then I'm noticing this teenage girl who doesn't care about the kid at all, she's just sitting next to him, lifting up her dress and the thing is, I don't think she’s wearing any underwear, it’s just very dark down there.

posted by philip-random at 10:57 PM on March 3, 2012 [4 favorites]

Man, does Steven Wilsone ever sleep?!?
posted by gern at 1:33 AM on March 4, 2012

I loved Thick As a Brick, partly because it's brilliantly satirical and partly because it's musically beautiful. It's an oedipal rant and a rejection of the father and the story of becoming an artist and a scathing take on Middle England and all in all constitutes a smashing of the windows in Ian Anderson's childhood home in Blackpool. It got stuck in my head when I was 13 and in some ways has never left.
posted by jokeefe at 1:37 AM on March 4, 2012 [1 favorite]

From Wolfgang's Vault, video of Jethro Tull performing at Tanglewood in 1970. Particularly fine is With You There To Help Me.
posted by jokeefe at 1:45 AM on March 4, 2012

I was working in a chip shop (next to a guy I swore was Elvis) and a bit of a vinylhead at the time (the mid-nineties), picking my way through the masses and masses of cheap records in secondhand record shops, when my boss said he had a lot of records left over he didn't need them anymore and I could have them for not much.

It was quite a mismatched collection, but it had two albums that made me into a prog rock listener: Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon (which was obligatory in any mid-seventies to mid-eighties record collection) and Thick as a Brick. That album immediately caught my eye, with its newspaper cover and the weirdness it radiated.

When I put it on it blew my mind, made Jethro Tull one of my favourite bands.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:58 AM on March 4, 2012

In 2012...


Will Be...


Thick as a Brick 2: the Movie (directed by Michael Bay)

I loved that album when young, and I fear this album, a bit. What if Mr. Anderson poke his flute in the eye of the lazy days of my teenaged summers, thick with deeply felt but incoherent longings and fears? (Metaphors... will be... mixed!)
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:15 AM on March 4, 2012

this tastes fascinating
posted by hal9k at 4:25 AM on March 4, 2012

Brick II: The Thickening.
posted by Devils Rancher at 5:02 AM on March 4, 2012 [2 favorites]

Here's the thing about Ian Anderson: the man loves cats! Better than that, he loves Bengal cats! What's not to love?
posted by MexicanYenta at 5:26 AM on March 4, 2012 [1 favorite]

Wait wait wait - so is the music in that promo from the new album? If it sounds even remotely like that I'll give it a shot.
posted by usonian at 5:27 AM on March 4, 2012

It's nice that Ian answers the question of whatever happened to Gerald Bostock, but the bigger question is where the hell was Biggles when we needed him last Saturday?
posted by Ber at 5:31 AM on March 4, 2012 [3 favorites]

Aeons ago as the story goes, too late for TAAB, I got into Tull on the Songs from the Woods tour. Not because of SFTW, but because of TAAB, Aqualung, and even A Passion Play. Long form epic songs of the era were what we jokingly called "Saga Rock", but secretly enjoyed. For to be a Tull fan was to be mocked, and still to this day mocked and outcast, as a fan of Flute Rock. Well I say fie to ye who hast hate for the flute. Is your "Favorite band" still producing new music 42 years later? Is your band still a working band or some sort of nostalgia act? Granted the "band" now contains only Martin and Ian, with Martin being the new boy, and yes I know that TAAB2 does not have any Martin Barre on it. But Ian battled through severe vocal problems, near death DVT, and nearly fatal hair loss. TAAB2 is more than a revisit of TAAB it is a summation of an entire career.
posted by Gungho at 5:50 AM on March 4, 2012

Never had the album but every single person I ever met in the 70s/80s owned a copy of it.
posted by bonobothegreat at 5:52 AM on March 4, 2012 [1 favorite]

Yesterday when scody posted that clip from Under a Blood Red Sky I was reminded of my favorite Jethro Tull story. The wikipedia article on the Red Rocks Amphitheater is not bad:

An incident during a performance by Jethro Tull on June 10, 1971, led to a five year ban of rock concerts at Red Rocks.[3][4] Approximately 1,000 people without tickets arrived at the sold-out show. Denver police directed the overflow, non-paying crowd to an area behind the theater, where they could hear the music but not see the band. The situation seemed satisfactory until some of the people without tickets attempted to enter the amphitheater by charging at, and breaking through, the police line. Some of those without tickets began lobbing rocks at the police, and the police responded by discharging tear gas at the gate-crashers. The wind carried the tear gas over the hill, into the paying crowd and onto the stage.

Imagine how drunk you have to be to throw rocks at police officers. I am sure they were all having a great time right up to the point where the poor suckers got tear gassed.
posted by bukvich at 6:18 AM on March 4, 2012

Wait wait wait - so is the music in that promo from the new album?

it seems that what he's done is to warp the original themes a little, keeping the same arrangements, although there's only two excerpts, so perhaps there will be some truly different things

a whole analog of TAAB could be rather bad and perhaps pointless - and i say that as someone who still listens to it and likes it
posted by pyramid termite at 6:20 AM on March 4, 2012

I do recommend watching the four-part interview of Anderson I linked in the FPP. He answers a lot of the questions about whether this is going to be a rehash, how he worked to make it of the same vein as the original but was not going to just create a pastiche, etc. It's an interesting interview, even if it is a bit odd (like many things which spring from Anderson, actually).
posted by hippybear at 6:45 AM on March 4, 2012

I played flute in grade school and family members told me over and over again i HAD to check out this Jethro Tull guy and the way he played and how much it ROCKED and but flutes aren't supposed to rock oh but this one does.

Don't think I've seen a copy with an incomplete connect the dots puzzle.
posted by blue t-shirt at 7:13 AM on March 4, 2012 [1 favorite]

BTW, anyone ever notice how that "See there a sun is born" section... on the first side of the record it's in 5/4 time, and the next time you hear it, it's 6/4?

posted by blue t-shirt at 7:16 AM on March 4, 2012

Don't think I've seen a copy with an incomplete connect the dots puzzle.

Click this link and you will.
posted by hippybear at 7:18 AM on March 4, 2012 [1 favorite]

One more thought about this magnificent album (well, the first one, anyways): There are two albums I'll buy from the dollar bin every time I see them so I can give them to friends ("YOU HAVE TO LISTEN TO THIS"): Labour of Lust by Nick Lowe and Thick as a Brick by Jethro Tull.
posted by blue t-shirt at 7:19 AM on March 4, 2012

This whole post is some kind of Pomo anti art snark attack, right? RIGHT?! Oh dear god please tell me I'm right!
posted by evilDoug at 7:48 AM on March 4, 2012

Also, in before flute hate

No need to get defensive about the flute; all sorts of bands use it in their music.
posted by TedW at 7:57 AM on March 4, 2012

Perhaps this is where someone can provide me a link to the finished St. Cleve Crossword.
posted by jepler at 8:20 AM on March 4, 2012

No need to get defensive about the flute

lemmy used to play in a band that had flute

if it's rock enough for lemmy, it's rock enough for the rest of us
posted by pyramid termite at 8:29 AM on March 4, 2012 [4 favorites]

This post and the links in the comments have convinced me to persuade my husband to take his birthday off to see one of the Tull concerts here in Texas.
posted by immlass at 8:55 AM on March 4, 2012

Perhaps this is where someone can provide me a link to the finished St. Cleve Crossword.

The St. Cleve crossword gives new and much deeper meaning to the category "cryptic crossword".
posted by hippybear at 9:48 AM on March 4, 2012

I'm betting there's a lot in the website which are inside jokes pertaining to the upcoming album, but I found this (on the "Community" page) to be hilarious:
Steven Wilson Moves up to 16 track

Community recording studio and rehearsal room owner, Steven Wilson, has revamped his facilities to introduce a 16-track recorder. A retro-enthusiast moving up from 4-track and 8-track systems, Stevie has long advocated the Sergeant Pepper approach to recording with two Ferrographs and a Grundig from the early 1960s. Using high quality Shure studio microphones purchased on eBay™, he succeeded in getting warm and full-sounding recordings of the Clutterbury Brass Band last Christmas and some wonderful live gig audio snapshots of the Thunderbards, local thrash-metal Shakespearean tribute band when they appeared at the Dirty Duck audition night. Steven purchased the 1970s Studer tape machine from lederhosen-clad visitor Ulf Doerner in March and has had it reconditioned ready for integration into his studio at Little Cruddock. With his own neo-prog band, Hedgehog Forest, Steve has recorded some demos which he hopes may get a favourable listen from the record companies in London.
posted by hippybear at 9:56 AM on March 4, 2012 [2 favorites]

Concerning TULL - the early 70s live act.

This take on Darma For One from Isle Of Wight 1970 does a good job of capturing the unique drama and prowess of a band who, at the time, were pretty much the cool underground item.

As for BRICK, as my previous comment hopefully illustrates, I was an early adapter, and young. As I recall, it was my brother's fifteenth birthday and one of his friends gave him the current #1 album. My brother listened to it a few times, liked how it began but couldn't make sense of the rest of it.

"It's all one song," he said.
"What do you mean?" I said.
"This whole record is just all one song."
"Both sides?"
"Yeah, both sides."
"Do you want it?"
"Okay, but you've got to trade me that Three Dog Night album for it."

Nothing's ever been the same.
posted by philip-random at 10:07 AM on March 4, 2012 [1 favorite]

In my wee group of outcasts and weirdos, there was a strong Tull following. I called myself a Tullhead because, although I didn't follow Tull from town to town on tour, I had the same fevered weeping fan love for the band's music and lyrics (technically, for Ian Anderson's music and lyrics) that Deadheads seemed to feel, though I recognize they also had a community as well, whereas, as Gungho observed upthread " be a Tull fan was to be mocked, and still to this day mocked and outcast...".

I have been to too few concerts, but I did go backstage once, sit in the first row once, and party until the wee hours in the hotel room with a handful of friends with Martin Allcock from Fairport Convention, who played keyboard for Jethro Tull on the Rock Island tour. (We had expected to hang with the band in the hotel lounge after the show. Ian and crew saw us, recognized us, and gestured in greeting to us in the parking lot of the hotel as they made their way inside. But the lounge was closed because the show happened on a Sunday. Martin sent one of us on a beer run and invited the rest to his hotel room. At about 3am the local radio station ran the Thick as a BRick Edit and Martin, totally lit by that time, impersonated Ian, lip-synching the song using a lamp as a dramatic lighting prop. Good times.)

And just yesterday, my 87 year old mother wept at the depth and loveliness of the lyrics to "Moths" from Heavy Horses, which I played in my car as we ran errands.

I fucking love that band. I will listen to whatever Ian Anderson squeezes out of his system.
posted by Jezebella at 12:23 PM on March 4, 2012 [2 favorites]

While I look forward to this I still wish Ian would get into the vaults and release some live material from the early 70s as well. The original TAAB tour, the Passion Play tour, Aqualung tour, etc. Then I can toss out some of those old boomy bootlegs.
posted by Ber at 2:45 PM on March 4, 2012

where the hell was Biggles when we needed him last Saturday?

Resting up in Cornwall, writing up his memoirs for a paperback edition of the Boy Scout manual?
posted by jokeefe at 2:49 PM on March 4, 2012 [3 favorites]

Key question: did that come spontaneously, or did you have to look it up?
posted by philip-random at 3:28 PM on March 4, 2012

My father, ever since I can remember, skewed heavily towards blues and classic rock. Bo Diddley was the guy he played air guitar to when he was fifteen, he would blast Big Brother and the Holding Company or Taj Mahal or Leon Russel after he'd had a few glasses of wine, he'd play Abbey Road as "soothing dinner music," and "Midnight Rambler" would send him over to the piano to try to pick out the tune to sing along, and he would play ZZ Top's La Grange over and over and over and rarely went on to the rest of the ZZ-Top greatest-hits album he had.

The Thanksgiving I was fifteen, he offered to help my aunt (we were at her house) by doing all the dishes. He'd just get an album and put it on and wash up like crazy. She accepted, and he went to pick an album, and I heard him say, "oh, I haven't heard this in a while..." I was expecting something like The Rolling Stones Hot Rocks collection or Who's Next. But no -- my father was trotting over to the radio to put on Thick as a Brick. And he put it on, and I lingered, watching him and trying to process the sight of my blues-loving father rocking out to a flute, scrubbing the pots as he happily sang, "And you don't know how it feels, to be thick as a BRICK!"

Every so often over the next couple days I'd stare at him, trying to adjust to the idea that my father had these....layers.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 3:32 PM on March 4, 2012 [2 favorites]

Jethro Tull was the first western/english music I ever hears. My aunt had left one of those old spool type players, with two albums : Tull's live album called Bursting out, and something by the beatles, and I listened to them obsessively, over and over again, especially the Tull, till every twist and turn of the flute became entrenched in my mind. So much so that when I heard the album again 20 years later (Thank you internet), I could still anticipate the next notes as it played.
posted by dhruva at 4:37 PM on March 4, 2012

This is what Metallica should have collaborated on...
posted by Renoroc at 5:05 PM on March 4, 2012

Honestly, I just hope that TAAB2 is better than Operation Mindcrime 2. Because that was a stinking pile of flaming shit.

(What other sequel albums have there been? I can't think of too many others.)
posted by hippybear at 5:33 PM on March 4, 2012

This is good news. When my oldest son was about 4, he was a prog rock fan, and it took us quite a while to figure out that his favourite group was Jet Rotl, based on one hearing of Aqualung. We'll see how he likes TAAB.
posted by sneebler at 7:52 PM on March 4, 2012

(What other sequel albums have there been? I can't think of too many others.)

Depends. Would you count something like Neil Young's Harvest Moon a sequel to Harvest, say?
posted by shakespeherian at 8:11 PM on March 4, 2012

I dunno. Possibly.

I'm more thinking of direct sequels, however. Like Meat Loaf's Bat Out Of Hell II: Back Into Hell (and the threequel album Bat Out Of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose).

It seems the sequel album is a rare thing indeed. At least in non-hip hop. It seems there are more than a few hip hop sequel songs and albums.
posted by hippybear at 8:58 PM on March 4, 2012

Key question: did that come spontaneously, or did you have to look it up?

Told you: got put into my head when I was 13, never, in some ways, left it.

I still know all the words to Close to the Edge, too.
posted by jokeefe at 9:44 PM on March 4, 2012

Even though they make utterly no sense whatsoever.
posted by jokeefe at 9:44 PM on March 4, 2012 [1 favorite]

I still know all the words to Close to the Edge, too.

Even though they make utterly no sense whatsoever.

That may be true, but similar to links in the Previously for TAAB, someone has sat down and attempted to make sense of them, and has written a website sharing what they think.
posted by hippybear at 9:51 PM on March 4, 2012

someone has sat down and attempted to make sense of them, and has written a website sharing what they think.

I've been there before, even linked to it, I'm pretty sure. Of particular delight is how the first line alone warrants a 400+ word essay. Of course, it's a hell of a first line:

"A seasoned witch could call you from the depths of your disgrace"

Which brings up the looming 40th anniversary of Close To The Edge ... Sept.13, according to Ziggy Stardust's also a 1972 album, and Exile on Mainstreet.

It was a very good year.
posted by philip-random at 11:20 PM on March 4, 2012

my claim to fame: the night the Gulf War started (the first one) I recorded bass for a friend's demo. This was at a studio in Atlanta. When we got there, it turns out the guy had a prototype Neve console, that had belonged to Eddy Offord Studio. This was the very console that had been used for work on Close To The Edge, and some other famous albums. The console was really homemade looking, in blue and red sheet metal casing.
posted by thelonius at 1:31 AM on March 5, 2012

It was a very good year.

Yeah, it really was: Wikipedia's page on albums released in 1972.
posted by hippybear at 7:46 AM on March 5, 2012

> Would you count something like Neil Young's Harvest Moon a sequel to Harvest, say?

I could *almost* swear that Young told Teri Gross Harvest Moon was a sequel to Harvest. That memory is buried pretty darn deep, though.
posted by bukvich at 8:48 AM on March 5, 2012

Harvest Moon was an official sequel. That's how I remember hearing it. And yes, Harvest (the original) was released in 1972.
posted by philip-random at 8:50 AM on March 5, 2012

(What other sequel albums have there been? I can't think of too many others.)

there was the kinks' preservation act 1 and preservation act 2, intended as sequels to village green preservation society

not as bad as many people say, but certainly not up to the level of the first album

also, i think that a passion play could be considered a sequel to thick as a brick - concept album, check, one continuous piece of music (save the hare that lost his spectacles), check, goofy transition between the two sides, check, and i think that the lyrical themes of the album are an extension of TAAB

however, the first time i heard it, when it came out, i didn't like it - too disjointed, not enough strong melodies - i've listened to it now and then in the past few years and it's grown on me a bit

except for that bloody hare - really, what were they thinking of?

i'm kind of hoping that ian refrains from a passion play pt 2

and there's a sequel that i would really love neil young to do - trans 2 - he had a real good feel for that kind of music
posted by pyramid termite at 6:48 PM on March 5, 2012

How did I miss this thread? I am cautiously optimisic about the new album, & I will certainly go see the show if I can, but I have seen them play maybe 5 times since 1996, and Anderson's voice has gotten more or more nasal over the past 15 years. Last summer he was having real trouble hitting the high notes.
posted by adamdschneider at 8:32 AM on March 10, 2012

Honestly, I think Anderson blew the best part of his voice as long ago as 1978-79 -- sometime after Songs From The Wood, but definitely by Stormwatch. It's not that he couldn't sing anymore, it just wasn't the same, and the loss of it was (still is) directly attributable to my loss of interest in much of his music. In fact the issue of voice is my biggest concern for Brick 2. I know it will be witty, odd, full of creative energy ... but I fear the coup de grace won't be there.
posted by philip-random at 9:00 AM on March 10, 2012

Yeah, I took my girlfriend with me to the show last summer, and she enjoyed it, but she wasn't really familiar with Tull prior to. I played her some old, recorded stuff afterward, and the difference in voice was quite stark. Used to be very rich.
posted by adamdschneider at 9:31 AM on March 10, 2012

Anderson suffered severe vocal problems in the mid 1980's. While it is painful to hear him strain in concert on the older stuff, much of the newer Tull and solo stuff (1987 and onward) has been written to accommodate his new voice. Anyone who hears songs from the Crest of a Knave, particularly "(a night in) Budapest" will agree that it is some of his best work.
posted by Gungho at 10:39 AM on March 16, 2012

It would be nice to hear a couple songs from Roots to Branches again, but I think the difference even between then and now is rather large.
posted by adamdschneider at 12:32 PM on March 16, 2012

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