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Jethro Tull - Thick as a Brick - live 1978

Thick as a Brick is the fifth studio album by the British rock band Jethro Tull, released in March 1972. The album contains a continuous piece of music, split over two sides of an LP record, and was deliberately designed to parody the concept album genre. The original packaging, designed like a newspaper, claims the album to be a musical adaptation of an epic poem by the fictional 8-year-old genius Gerald Bostock, though the lyrics were actually written by the band's frontman, Ian Anderson.

The album was recorded in late 1971, featuring music composed by Anderson and arranged with the contribution of all band members.


Really don't mind if you sit this one out My word's but a whisper your deafness a shout I may make you feel but I can't make you think Your sperm's in the gutter your love's in the sink So you ride yourselves over the fields And you make all your animal deals And your wise men don't know how it feels To be thick as a brick

And the sandcastle virtues are all swept away In the tidal destruction the moral melee The elastic retreat rings the close of play As the last wave uncovers the newfangled way But your new shoes are worn at the heels And your suntan does rapidly peel And your wise men don't know how it feels To be thick as a brick And the love that I feel is so far away: I'm a bad dream that I just had today And you shake your head And said it's a shame

Spin me back down the years and the days of my youth Draw the lace and black curtains and shut out the whole truth Spin me down the long ages, let them sing the song

See there, a son is born and we pronounce him fit to fight There are blackheads on his shoulders, and he pees himself in the night We'll make a man of him, put him to trade Teach him to play Monopoly and how to sing in the rain

The poet and the painter casting shadows on the water As the sun plays on the infantry returning from the sea The do-er and the thinker, no allowance for the other As the failing light illuminates the mercenary's creed The home fire burning, the kettle almost boiling But the master of the house is far away The horses stamping, their warm breath clouding In the sharp and frosty morning of the day And the poet lifts his pen while the soldier sheaths his sword And the youngest of the family is moving with authority

Building castles by the sea, he dares the tardy tide to wash them all aside

The cattle quietly grazing at the grass down by the river Where the swelling mountain water moves onward to the sea: The builder of the castles renews the age-old purpose And contemplates the milking girl whose offer is his need The young men of the household have all gone into service And are not to be expected for a year The innocent young master, thoughts moving ever faster Has formed the plan to change the man he seems And the poet sheaths his pen while the soldier lifts his sword And the oldest of the family is moving with authority

Coming from across the sea, he challenges the son Who puts him to the run

What do you do when the old man's gone, ddo you want to be him? And your real self sings the song, do you want to free him? No one to help you get up steam And the whirlpool turns you way off-beam

I've come down from the upper class to mend your rotten ways My father was a man of power whom everyone obeyed So come on all you criminals! I've got to put you straight Just like I did with my old man twenty years too late

Your bread and water's going cold, your hair is short and neat I'll judge you all and make damn sure that no-one judges me

You curl your toes in fun as you smile at everyone You meet the stares, you're unaware that your doings aren't done And you laugh most ruthlessly as you tell us what not to be But how are we supposed to see where we should run?

La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la

I see you shuffle in the courtroom With your rings upon your fingers and your downy little sidies And your silver buckle shoes Playing at the hard case You follow the example of the comic-paper idol Who lets you bend the rules

So, come on ye childhood heroes! Won't you rise up from the pages of your comic-books, your super crooks And show us all the way? Well, make your will and testament Won't you join your local government? We'll have Superman for president Let Robin save the day

You put your bet on number one and it comes up every time The other kids have all backed down and they put you first in line And so you finally ask yourself just how big you are And you take your place in a wiser world of bigger motor cars And you wonder who to call on

So, where the hell was Biggles when you needed him last saturday? And where were all the sportsmen who always pulled you though? They're all resting down in Cornwall Writing up their memoirs for a paperback edition Of the Boy Scout manual

Songwriters: Ian Anderson

Thick as a Brick lyrics © BMG Rights Management


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