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Our critics' picks in new releases


If you adored the acoustic Tull of, say, Living in the Past, you'll do backflips over the latest Ian Anderson project. His mischievous quintet, which still includes longtime guitarist Martin Barre, burns with energy, pitting jaunty flute against fingerpicked guitars, mandolins and even a string quartet. The sharp-tongued commentary of Anderson's clever anti-carols dovetails into several traditional fare transformed by odd time signatures ("Greensleeves" in 7/4!). Shaken and stirred, Brit-folk and prog mixed up by these graybeards comprise a potent Xmas cocktail.

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