Jethro Tull

Jack in the Green: Live in Germany

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There have been many different musical eras for the mighty Jethro Tull. Depending on the album you listen to, you might come across a period in which the group embraced either blues-rock, prog rock, folk music, or even pristine keyboard/synth rock, among other styles. But on the 2008 DVD Jack in the Green: Live in Germany, just about every stylistic detour is showcased. Scanning a hefty 23-year period (1970 through 1993), the 18-track set balances Tull's best-known compositions with tracks that have been largely forgotten over the years. And as a bonus, by viewing this DVD in its entirety, you'll be able to chart the progression/regression of the length of Ian Anderson's beard, as well as the group's rather "interesting" styles of dress over the years (oh how the lads were certainly candidates for an episode of What Not to Wear at various points). The majority of the set is comprised of performances from the '80s, including one from 1982 (from a show called Rockpop in Concert), which sees the group in medieval garb, balancing old-time folk ("Heavy Horses") and hard rock ("Locomotive Breath"). You'll also find songs from a pair of 1986 performances (including a fine reading of "Thick as a Brick"), as well as a performance from 1993, by which time Anderson began singing in a noticeably different, more "breathy" style (as evidenced by the version of "My Sunday Feeling" included here). But long-timers will undoubtedly get a kick out of a pair of performances from 1970 and 1971, an era that many consider Tull's creative peak: "With You There to Help Me" and "Nothing Is Easy" (the latter of which features a rather grumpy Anderson, who orders the band to stop and restart the song, before later ending it abruptly, by walking off-stage!). While more early to mid-'70s era performances would have certainly been welcomed, for fans who want a video snapshot of mostly '80s era Tull, Jack in the Green: Live in Germany is certainly worthwhile viewing.

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