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Ian Anderson - 'Homo Erraticus' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/6c/d2/59/ian-anderson-homo-erraticus-71-1401828492.jpg Hot

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The fact that Ian Anderson can still write music like this at this point in his career is testament to his undiminished musical talents.

The iconic 'Thick As Brick' was released in 1972 by Jethro Tull and was based on a poem by child prodigy Gerald Bostock. In 2012 Ian Anderson released 'Thick As A Brick 2' which explored the different paths Bostock's life might have taken. Once again, Bostock returns as Anderson's alter ego in his latest offering 'Homo Erraticus'; this time exploring key elements of British history, including prophecies by historian Ernest T Parfitt (1865-1928).

We start proceedings with a soft yet ominous vocal which begins the tale of England's beginnings, the music then taking flight whilst the Hammond Organ and guitar do musical battle.

Anderson has presented some wonderful new ways to reveal the charisma in his voice, and none more so than 'Enter The Uninvited'. With spoken word lyrics mixed with snorting vocals, the music weaves in and out of every word, collecting itself only to bring the song to a climatic close.

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'Puer Ferox Adventus' tells the tale of the coming of Christianity. Anderson's vocals sound appropriately like a sermon, with only the rumble of thunder and a musical note like a drone to accompany him. Never peaking too soon, the song builds slowly from a melancholy tune to a euphoric finale of exquisite flute and piano work.

Keeping Anderson's promise of delivering more of a Rock feel, distorted guitar pumps through the veins of 'The Turnpike Inn' and 'The Engineer' while 'The Pax Britannica' is pure Folk Rock delivered in a most splendid fashion.
The technical proficiency of the music of 'Tripidium Ad Bellum' allows a beautifully gentle Jazz feel to soak into the song, with dazzling flute work that leaves you breathless.

'After The War' has the poetic grace of traditional story telling, and an emotive guitar solo and truly beautiful melody that tugs at your heart. The wealth of musical ideas continue with the swing rhythms of 'New Blood Old Veins', before returning to the more traditional acoustic Folk of 'In For A Pound'.

The narration on 'Per Errationes Ad Astra' reminds us of the meaning of "Homo Erraticus" – "Wandering Man" – and the closing song 'Cold Dead Reckoning' delivers more Hard Rock clout to finish off this musical journey.
'Homo Erraticus' is a lyrically introspective album, and musically it's both brilliant and seductive. The fact that Ian Anderson can still write music like this at this point in his career is testament to his undiminished musical talents.

Ray Paul

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