Throughout the '70s, Jethro Tull was one of the world's premier live acts, regularly playing to sold-out audiences in huge arenas all over the world. With his inimitable theatrics and manic flute improvisations, Ian Anderson was always the consummate showman, and he peppers these performances with the relaxed, cheeky stage patter of a seasoned veteran. Recorded live in Europe in 1978.
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music
After playing this album for literally months, I have finally sat my skinny arse down to lend some ink to the wonderful JETHRO TULL recording “Bursting Out – Live”. It is now remastered — thank you very much Chrysalis/Capital records for doing so, and Ian ANDERSON, of course, for being there to supervise and lend your personal touch with colorful liner notes.
The night was November 26, 1995; the club: Richard's on Richards in Vancouver; and the lineup with Duke Robillard comprised Marty Ballou on bass, Marty Richards on drums, and "Sax" Gordon Beadle on tenor and baritone sax. They were touring with Jimmy Witherspoon and this album captures the set before they brought "Spoon" to the stage. It was taped for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's "Saturday Night Blues" program with host Holger Petersen. Seven of the nine songs on Stretchin' Out also appear on 1996's Duke's Blues. That one is truly a gem, but for fans who don't have it yet, one might recommend this recording instead. "Too Hot to Handle" and "That's My Life" are the only tracks that aren't on Duke's Blues. Even if you do have Duke's Blues, Stretchin' Out is still well worth the purchase because of the great extended jams and shoot-from-the-hip guitar licks you won't find anywhere else. Robillard sings a few bars on Albert Collins' "Dyin' Flu" with no mic. You have to strain to hear him over the inevitable amplifier hums and crowd support of a live recording (one fan yells "Duke it out!"), but that's what makes it so cool and compelling.
Released just as punk was taking hold on the public's imagination in America and making groups like Jethro Tull seem like dinosaurs on their way to extinction, Bursting Out became a seemingly perpetual denizen of the cutout bins for years afterward. However, it happened to be a good album, a more-than-decent capturing of a live Tull concert from Europe…
Undoubtedly this double LP live is one of the highest moments of Jethro Tull in his long career….
This is the band in top-flight form and the remastering certainly gave this recording a newfound crispness and clarity. Ian is in splendid voice and the band is as tight as it was going to get on that particular tour. For those of us who wish we were there (yours truly) and those that were, this double CD set is a must have acquisition. You cannot say you are a true JT fan if this album is not in your collection. This collection of live tracks epitomizes the JT sound of that era.