Jim was more than a little surprised (and quite happy) to hear that this week's album choice would be Aqualung; like a father who's been wishing for years that his son would get into baseball, his face tentatively lit up when he asked what song I liked most and I answered all of them. Of course, this is not my first foray into Jethro Tull's flutey universe. Jim had me listen to dozens of album for one of my Renaissance Faire themed weeks, and that planted the seed that turned me into a true die hard fan.
Aqualung is pretty perfect as far as classic rock concept albums go and in this case the concept is anti established religion, an idea that rocked Jim's world when he was a teen first under the influences of progressive rock. It's an intelligent, musically expansive and intriguing album and I'll risk sounding like an old grump and say that it boggles the mind to think that once music this interesting was massively popular too (it reached #7 in America, 4 in the UK 1971; today, we have Lady Gaga twice in the Top Ten).
This has really become one of my very favorite listens from beginning to end, and I meant it when I told Jim I loved the whole thing. The album opens with the classic classic rock heaviness of the title track and ends in embittered defiance with Wind Up. You're in lots of luck with the added bonus tracks that features the jaunty Bach softness of Bouree.