Benefit Original recording reissued
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Top Customer Reviews
There's not a bad track on the album, but high points for me are; 'To Cry You A Song.' - Fades in with Martin Barre's double-tracked lead guitar hook, followed by Ian's processed double tracked vocal. Martin's lead breaks between verses, not only double tracked, but then two complementary melodies in the left and right channels, finally coming together in harmony just before the next verse and then triple tracked toward the end. There's a lot going on here, if you take the time to listen to it carefully. 'Play In Time.' - featuring reverse guitar, reverse piano, it seems there's reverse everything at times, swirling around the stereo soundscape in organised anarchy.
These weren't rock 'n' rollers bashing out a few three chord tunes, these were consummate musicians taking their time to craft an album of intricate rhythms and melodies using the best recording techniques of the time. Every member of the band contributed to a complex jigsaw that fitted together perfectly, not forgetting John Evans' (or Evan as he was credited on the original sleeve) essential contribution on keyboards.
Over thirty years later I can still listen to this album and enjoy every second of it. It just doesn't seem dated to me at all. If I could award more than five stars I wouldn't hesitate to do so.
I always remember a contemporary 'top 100 of all time' list which contained a review of Stand Up and Benefit in which these albums were described as containing 'tight, riffy songs, full of melody and ripe with wit.' This is still the best description of Tull that I have ever heard, and one which I still retain in my memory. Without doubt, this was the fresh, golden age of the band. Benefit, for me, is still their pinnacle, and along with Stand Up, Living in th Past, Aqualung, Songs from the Wood and Heavy Horses, contains their best work. I regret tht I am not keen on the mediocre albums from the mid seventies ('Brick' Warchild, Minstrel and Passion Play), nor on the very heavy and muddy style found on Stormwatch and Broadsword. I do quite like the lighter and more clean melody of Under Wraps, but the rest of the eighties stuff leaves me cold. If you are starting to listen to Tull, go for Benefit, Stand Up and Living in the Past. These I have never tired of, not even after 35 years.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I am very disappointed with this LP.
I have now had five copies of it and all have been badly warped.