It's hard not to feel nostalgic before a band like Jethro Tull, capable of delivering 11 albums in its first decade of existence (from 1968 to 1978) that we can only consider, with the perspective of time, between notable and exceptional. Maybe the first nostalgic is his own Ian Anderson, which from Stormwatch (1979) was sold out, we suspect that forever, creative gasoline. And that in recent years has been losing voice and tessitura at times agonizing, especially when faced with the sharp phrases of his great work Thick as a brick (1972) and what succeeds in emitting his throat is a staccato babble, agonizing and difficult to recognize.
Anderson celebrated this Saturday in Madrid the fiftieth anniversary of his fabulous creature, which is dizzying figure, and in the Municipal Conference Hall had run out until the last entry many weeks ago, because the sacred cows are well worth veneration and it is never clear if there will be many more occasions to honor them. The Scottish singer and flautist takes to heart with a show rich in dedications and archive material, but above all fascinating in a repertoire not always subject to the tyranny of the greatest hits. Especially for its startup, which brings up to five pieces of that debut album, This Was (1968), then much closer to the blues than to the later and emblematic progressive delusions. Next to the fabulous psychedelia of A Song For Jeffrey, Ian recovers even an absolute rarity, Love Song, discard why anyone would have sold his soul to Lucifer.
These 50 years have given Anderson a lot; above all, so that a leader of rows of personality, probably as strenuous as his own, counted up to 36! bandmates. None of his four current cronies provides pedigree, but solvency; the same as he shows with his everlasting transverse flute, in addition to the harmonica and the acoustic guitar, which draws for the controversial day My God (from his other inescapable album, Aqualung, 1971). "They censored it in their day in the United States, but it was because they did not read the lyrics properly," he admonished sarcastically. Missed the opportunity to note that Aqualung, in its entirety, it was outlawed in Spain until 1976, once the still dweller of our most fateful Valley had already died.
The excellence of the repertoire collides with its limitations, alleviated after the break by all kinds of tricks
The absolute protagonist of this half-century of history today adds 71 years and retains the most curious sound with buccal percussion of his flute or that iconic picture of the left leg flexed in the air while playing the instrument. But the excellence of the repertoire collides with its limitations, alleviated after the break by all kinds of tricks: an irrelevant instrumental (Pastime With Good Company), a piece that they assume between keyboard player and bassist (David Goodier) without Ian's goal (Ring Out, Solstice Bells) and a heads-up Farm On The Freeway with Goodier himself, a man with a piping voice, and see that we were not looking for the joke, which badly fits the spirit of the Tull. To make matters worse, there are even two virtual duos with the giant screen, in Heavy Horses Y Aqualung, such that if we attended a musical.
Sparks remain, no doubt. And even more with this new guitarist, the German Florian Opahle, who sinks foot and a half into hard rock. That's why the ending was so emotional, Aqualung and the only bis, Locomotive Breath, accompanied by a projection of railroads at full speed that reminds a lot that they used Supertramp to Rudy. But there were more faces of complicity or resignation to the exit than those of euphoria for what was lived. We can feel nostalgia for an epic, scathing, labyrinthine and very rich repertoire. Ian Anderson, who was the one who conceived it until the last note, must feel a much greater nostalgia: that of the times when he was capable of executing it.