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The Return Of The Grand Court Jester
on 14 October 2002
When first released in 1974, I recall many being disappointed with Warchild, in comparison to its illustrious predecessor, A Passion Play, but over the years this view has changed considerably and the album is rightly considered one of Tulls best offerings.
Warchild is essentially a collection of outtakes from the Passion Play sessions and from the soundtrack to the ill fated Warchild movie. Similarities with APP abound, especially in the use of saxophones and lyrical themes. There are Piano accordians in the mix, too and the album has a humorous, surreal English Music Hall / circus feel.
Standout tracks from the album proper, include the magnificent Backdoor Angels which features some savage guitar from Martin Barre; the classic Skating Away ( on the thin ice of a new day ); hit single Bungle in the Jungle and the sardonic Only Solitaire - an acoustic jingle, part self parody part searing attack on the rock press.
This remastered version features some outstanding bonus tracks ( 7 in all ) culled from various collections, all of which are regarded as cult classics by the Jethro Tull cognescenti and the album would be worth buying for these alone. Add all the original tracks and the pristine, crystal clear remastering job and you have what can only be described as an essential album.