Essential

by: Jethro Tull

This 2011 Jethro Tull collection from EMI doesn't offer up any surprises, but it does provide a wealth of material for a single-disc retrospective. Tull, due in part to their penchant for art rock epics, have always been a difficult act to build an overview around, but the 16 tracks that make up this U.K. import manage to both represent and flow. Built around obvious cuts like "Aqualung," "Living in the Past," "Bungle in the Jungle," and "Locomotive Breath," and peppered with fan favorites such as "Thick as a Brick [Edit No. 1]," "Bouree," and "Witches Promise," Essential may paint with familiar colors, but it uses surprisingly broad strokes. ~ James Christopher Monger

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