From Aural Innovations #33 (March 2006)
Wasn't sure at first if this concert was going to have a support act or not. As it turned out, this was to be an ultimate 'Evening With Jethro Tull', and that it was. Over two solid hours of classic album rock that so many of us aging baby boomers have come to love and in some cases, practically live for. Plus, before the show there were ushers hovering around the lobby making sure that each and every patron in attendance was to receive a specially-available Jethro Tull - 'Aqualung Live' CD as a gift. Recently you might have seen copies of this disc for sale on Ebay. It's a great live performance of the entire 'Aqualung' LP with several interview snippets.Very nice.
The first set started off with "Life Is A Long Song", "Skating Away", "Jack In The Green", "Beggar's Farm" and "Up To Me". On several of the numbers I've just mentioned a gifted violinist, Lucia Macarelli, joined up with the five musicians and, in my opinion, sort of gave Tull a new 'musical direction'. Anyone who has seen this tour knows what I'm talking about. The rest of this segment had several tunes that I wasn't familiar with, like "Weathercock", "Griminelli's Lament" and "Wondering Land". A bit later came two numbers that I fondly remember from way back when - "Mother Goose" and the extraordinary instrumental "Bouree". It appeared that Ian Anderson was having the time of his life.
After a brief intermission the band had returned for set number two. At first, I simply couldn't believe my ears as I was hearing them play two covers, Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" and Zeppelin's "Kashmir". Might want to keep in mind these were a bit different from the original versions. The crowd of approx. 2,100 seemed to have eaten it up. Next up was a folk ballad, "She Is Like A Swallow", that required some intricate playing on guitarist Martin Barre's part. Then came "Cross Eyed Mary", "Hymm 43", "My God", "Aqualung" (where he took out a disposable camera and snapped photos of the appreciative audience), "Wind-Up", as well as the rousing encore "Locomotive Breath", "Protect And Survive" and "Cheerio", where the road crew brought out two giant balloons with that 'classic' image of a silhouette of Anderson playing the flute. What an enchanting evening it had been. This was my third time I've seen Jethro Tull play live and believe me, there are so few bands that can hold a light up to them. Touring line-up: Ian Anderson - acoustic guitar,flute & vocals, Martin Barre - guitar, Jonathan Noyce - bass, Andrew Giddings - keyboards,organ & piano, Doane Perry - drums and Lucia Macarelli - violin. It rarely gets any better than this, my friends.
Setlist: Life Is A Long Song - Skating Away - Jack In The Green - Beggars Farm - Up To Me - Weathercock - Griminelli's Lament - Aurora - Wondering Aloud - 'Godfather's Theme' - Cheap Day Return - Mother Goose - Bouree ~Intermission~ - Bohemian Rhapsody - Kashmir - She Is like A Swallow - Cross Eyed Mary - Murphy's Paw - Hymm 43 - My God - Budapest - Aqualung - Wind-Up - Locomotive Breath - Protect And Survive - Cheerio
Reviewed by Mike Reed