Thick As A Brick: Live In Iceland
Eagle Rock Entertainment/Shock
Here Ian Anderson – he of Jethro Tull! (we’re reminded on every “solo” release/tour and associated branding) – takes the old Thick As A Brick (and his 2012 sequel) on the road, both albums, all the material, the full (true) story of the fictional Gerald Bostock.
What a fucking snooze-fest!
The music is decent – in a sense. Anderson sounds permanently parched and has his understudy there on stage behind him, helping to carry the notes and doing a bit of Dickens-ian acting on the side. Part of what makes this so interminable is the silly antics – slow-paced and cutting away to Anderson in video-taped skits, it’s about as convincing – and funny – as seeing one of John Cleese’s retirement/comeback/retirement tours.
Mistimed jokes from Anderson seem cruel and ugly and the new music is ridiculous and boring. Oh, the band nails it, sure – but it’s horrible. It seemed to start off okay, those opening notes and lines…
But then imagine Mike Oldfield playing every single version of Tubular Bells – and the 37 other unreleased albums he has in the can based vaguely on that theme – then imagine a guy who used to be an incredible frontman, now with his vocal chords castrated and looking like Patrick Stewart dressed up for a biker convention, singing hey nonny nonsense atop. Forever and ever.
Fans will possibly love this. But I know that Anderson, polite gent he still seems, has told us already that he won’t mind if we sit this one out. That’s wise advice actually. I’m all about taking one for the team. You on the other hand would have to be thick as…er…well, you get the picture: stay away.