Q - 12/00, p.1443 stars out of 5
- "...Famously picked the heavy metal Grammy award from Metallica's pockets...this new, lower-pitched, more muscular version of band includes live favorites 'Farm On The Freeway' and 'Dogs In The Midwinter'..."
Jethro Tull: Ian Anderson (vocals, guitar, flute, keyboards, programming); Martin Barre (guitar); David Pegg (bass).
Additional personnel: Ric Sanders (violin); Doanne Perry, Gerry Conway (drums).
Engineers include: Martin Barre, David Pegg, Robin Black.
Jethro Tull: Dave Pegg, Gerry Conway, Ian Anderson , Martin Barre, Doane Perry.
Personnel: Ian Anderson (vocals, guitar, acoustic guitar, flute, keyboards, percussion, drum programming); Martin Barre (guitar, acoustic guitar, electric guitar); Ric Sanders (violin); Dave Pegg (acoustic bass, electric bass, bass guitar); Gerry Conway, Doane Perry (drums).
Audio Remixer: Stephen W. Tayler.
Liner Note Author: Ian Anderson .
Recording information: Additional Locations; Black Barn Studio; Black Bean Studio.
Photographer: Martyn Goddard.
After steering Jethro Tull toward a sound that emphasized synthesizers over acoustic guitars and even his trademark flute, Ian Anderson and a stripped-down Tull pumped up the volume on 1987's CREST OF A KNAVE. The howling guitar of longtime axe-man Martin Barre is much more in evidence here than on previous releases from the decade. The band sounds energized, the performances heartfelt.
While the record is an undeniable high point of the band's 1980s work, many people were surprised that CREST won a Grammy in 1987 for Best Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Performance. Despite its metal touches, the music is far too cerebral and its themes far too esoteric to qualify as either hard rock or heavy metal. On "Jump Start," Anderson hearkens back to his glory days with an intricate arrangement centered around furious flute and guitar explosions. "Said She Was a Dancer," built around a refreshingly simple chord sequence, showcases Anderson's expressive singing and Barre's eerie mimicry of Mark Knopfler's guitar sound.