8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Classic Tull at their prime,
This review is from: Too Old To Rock 'N' Roll (Audio CD)
This is where a life long love affair with Tull began, way back in 1976. A friend of mine played me this album several times over a few weeks, and to be honest it took me a few listens to appreciate it, first only liking the title track and then gradually everything track by track. I later got it my wn copy for Christmas and I must have driven my parents and brother mad playing it over and over again, in over 30 years I have never tired of it.Its an album which I can listen to time and time again, as it is so well structured and performed.
Strangely I was oblivious to the negative reaction that this album got from many of Tulls fans and critics alike, as in my opinion it sits very nicely in between the classic 1975 offering "Minstrel in the Gallery" and the start of Ian's love of country pursuits and the "Songs from the Wood" album which followed in 1977.
Too Old to Rock n Roll too young to Die has always been one of my favorite Tull albums from arguably the strongest line up, Tull ever had (and there have been some rather strong line ups over 40 odd years)with Ian Anderson supported by Martin Barre on guitar, John Glascock on bass (his first outing) John Evan on Keyboards and Barrymore Barlow on drums.
As other reviewers have mentioned, this was originally planned to be a stage show, using the music, and you can see how this would have worked by the strip cartoon which graces the middle of the album sleeve. I think this might have worked a couple of years earlier, but at the time this was released, there was a new movement happening either side of the pond as the first signs of Punk Rock appeared and the "natural" backlash against the "dinosaurs" of rock began to show (the tipping point)... any band linked to prog rock got an instant berating from the younger journalists (what happened to the journalists that had previously loved those classic rock bands..did they all get fired at the same time, did they all suddenly turn their back on clasic rock and embrace the new scene...? Possibly because the music scene was dominated by pop/teen magazines and weekly publications such as the NME, Sounds and Melody Maker, it left no room for the classic bands which had dominated the last 7 years of rock music. I doubt that could hapen now, as monthly magazines such as The Word are designed for a wider audience with probably a higher demographic.
Anyway, back to the album, its a concept album about Ray Lomas an old rocker who early on (Quizz Kid) gets his fifteen minutes of fame, before his life slides back to normal, this makes Ray look at his life, his friends and his future. It also has a couple of excellent bonus songs, A small cigar and the brilliant underated Strip Cartoon, which really should have made the original album cut.
Classic Tull, performing Classic rock from one of the strongest and interesting periods of music, forget the 60's, to me the 70's is the decade where we had some of the most interesting sounds ever created and some of the worlds greastest and best selling albums ever made. I cannot honestly say if this is the best album Tull ever made, but I can tell you this, its right up there with them and to me will always be amongst my favorite albums of all time. Too Old to Rock n Roll is a classic just like Dark Side of the Moon, The Lamb Lies Down or Hotel California, this is another timeless album one you may not have heard of but one which should not be ignored. A great place to start if you are not sure where too with Jethro Tull and at this price its not going to be much of a risk either.