48 Years Ago: Jethro Tull Release Aqualung

On March 19th 1971, Jethro Tull released their groundbreaking third album Aqualung. This was the first album that gave the band international attention and showed their wide range of talents. The track listing reads like a greatest hits package so lets look at some of the album’s finest moments.

Cross-Eyed Mary

Aqualung has always been considered a concept album, something the band completely disagrees with. This song is quoted as one of the reasons why, because it continues the lyrical story started in the title track and first song.

Up To Me

Aqualung was a turning point for Jethro Tull for many reasons, one of them being an abandonment of some of their blues roots in exchange for a more English folk sound. Up To Me is a perfect example of that change.

Hymn 43

While Jethro Tull has said that this is not a concept album, themes of faith and religion run through most tracks. Hymn 43 is full of such observations.

Locomotive Breath

Aqualung was the first Tull album with John Evan as a permanent member on piano and keyboards, and his bluesy piano introduction perfectly sets up this foreboding track.

Aqualung

The epic title track that sets the stage for the entire album. Jethro Tull would go on to loftier and more grandiose projects but none would ever come out as well as this.

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