The Second Disc

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Jethro Tull’s “Aqualung” Turns 40, Gets Deluxe Edition From EMI

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First Quadrophenia, now Aqualung!  Yes, in advance of an official announcement, remix producer Steven Wilson has spilled the beans on an upcoming deluxe reissue of Jethro Tull’s Aqualung!  (Big thanks to our friends at MusicTAP for passing the news on!)  The British band’s fourth album, Aqualung remains Jethro Tull’s all-time biggest seller, not to mention one of the most beloved rock albums of all time.  It’s tentatively scheduled for September release from struggling juggernaut EMI, and like Quadrophenia, will include surround-sound mixes.  Who could ask for anything more?  Well, if you could, you’ll be rewarded!  It appears that there will be bonus tracks, too!

In Wilson’s words, “Since Ian Anderson has been talking about this, I guess it’s now official. I recently completed a brand new mix of Jethro Tull‘s Aqualung for a 40th anniversary edition. As always the remix is super faithful to the original, but with much improved sonic clarity (something that just can’t be achieved with remastering). Also remixed for inclusion were many other studio tracks from the 1970-71 period (several previously unreleased), and a 5.1 mix. It should be out on EMI in September.”

Aqualung was one of the first albums recorded at Island Studios, and marked a departure for Jethro Tull in that its songs are primarily acoustic.  Bandleader and chief songwriter Ian Anderson, though, was at his most inspired, dividing the album into two suites entitled Aqualung and My God, one to each side of the LP.  The album also marked a number of personnel changes for the band which had formed in 1967.  It was keyboardist John Evan’s first as a full-fledged member, first with new bassist Jeffrey Hammond, and last with Clive Bunker playing drums.  Upon its release, it went Top Ten in both the U.K. and America, hitting No. 4 and No. 7, respectively.  Past reissues have added six bonus tracks, including BBC performances and an interview.  It’s unclear whether these tracks will be retained or new bonus tracks will take their place.

Hit the jump for the track listing to the original Aqualung, and watch this space for updates as to the confirmed content and release date!

Jethro Tull, Aqualung (Chrysalis ILPS-9145 (U.K.), 1971)

  1. Aqualung
  2. Cross-Eyed Mary
  3. Cheap Day Return
  4. Mother Goose
  5. Wond’ring Aloud
  6. Up to Me
  7. My God
  8. Hymn 43
  9. Slipstream
  10. Locomotive Breath
  11. Wind Up

Written by Joe Marchese

June 3, 2011 at 12:28

Posted in Jethro Tull, News, Reissues

2 Responses

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  1. Originally Posted by Steven Wilson on SH forums
    Guys – I’ve had confirmation from EMI that they are going with a regular DVD for my 5.1 mix. On the plus side the original 70’s quad mix will also be included, and both the old and new stereo mixes at 96/24. SW


    June 10, 2011 at 16:57

  2. Plus
    Steven Wilson
    New Member

    Join Date: Jun 2011
    Location: LONDON

    About the Aqualung remix, this was all done at 96K and in particular the new stereo mix is something that I’m very proud of, since the recording was not done under the best circumstances (though what’s on tape is better than the original mix would suggest). Having failed to get EMI to go Blu-Ray on this (which is the high res audio format I’m moving to for a forthcoming solo record), I’m still urging them to at least do a DVDA. The problem with the major labels is that although there are genuine music lovers still in these companies, they are beholden to the accountants who run things. This was not an issue with Crimson reissues because Robert owns all the copyrights, so we could do what we wanted with them. I’m going to pursue the idea of somehow trying to make the high res formats available if the companies won’t do it, but don’t hold your breath – there’s a lot of bureaucracy involved.

    At least the success of the Crimson reissues has led a to more and more artists from this era coming to the conclusion that a sympathetic remix (by which I mean one that is super faithful to the original mix in every respect, using the same balance, EQ, stereo placement, plate reverbs..etc..), can do what no amount of remastering the original mixes can do in bringing out sonic clarity. So in terms of the model of deluxe editions with the original mix, a new stereo mix, 5.1 mix, and mixes of previously unheard out-takes found on the reels, there are more of these kind of projects on the way, though I can’t say more at present. I just hope that more often that not we can incorporate a high res format into these editions. Watch this space I guess…


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    June 10, 2011 at 17:38

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