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I've bitched a lot about this album, mostly because of its absurdly-high place in the hearts of Classic Rock fans, so I'm not even going to bother attempting to comment on the lame original six-song release; instead I shall cover the remastered, doubled-in-length edition. Not that that's much better.

Okay, granted, The Who tear through some of their songs with aplomb: the opener "Heaven and Hell" features some raucous instrumental work, and their versions of "Shakin' All Over" and "Summertime Blues" are, dare I say, definitive.

Disappointingly, there's only one song from the band's masterpiece The Who Sell Out ("Tattoo"), and they spend way too much on the partially-cooked covers "Fortune Teller" and "Young Man Blues", else lame originals "A Quick One While He's Away" (WHY?!). Oh, and they totally screw "My Generation" over by turning it from a decent proto-punkish tune to an interminable quarter-hour jam.

I could continue complaining all night, but I'll wrap up by saying that whilst Live at Leeds may rawk, that doesn't mean it's good. It's rather monotonous, and way too many of the songs either stink or end up crapified.

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Posted: Sunday 10th Mar 2019 11:22 AM

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album review
Side One: "I Am the Sea" is a decent enough prelude, but Tommy's "Overture" in comparison kicks its ass all over the place.

Even so, "The Real Me" kicks the ass of pretty much anything on that acoustic guitar-ridden wimpy opera thing, though this album's production is questionable: Daltrey's vocals are too buried in the mix.

The title track is an instrumental ... already?! It's kinda cheesy, but decent enough; "Cut My Hair" is nice; "The Punk and the Godfather" is dull rock bluster combined with an unintelligable falsetto part.

Side Two: This is why I don't like this album. It's boring. There's no friggin' hooks or anything particularly interesting going on, just Townshend playing his three chords in different orders. Blah.

Side Three: Finally, something decent! "5:15" that is. Then we get back to Boringville ... "Sea and Sand"'s intro suggests it might be different, but no, it's just more plodding crap. And doesn't Townshend include the melody from "Long Live Rock" in there? And "Bell Boy"?

Side Four: My God! "Doctor Jimmy" is actually kinda good - I'm shocked! Maybe it's because the album's previous two sides sucked so badly. "The Rock" is another bland instrumental, then there's "Love Reign O'er Me", which actually does rule.

I don't see what all the fuss was about. The concept for Quadrophenia may be more coherent than Tommy, but that doesn't excuse the massive, monolithic genericism that the album subsists on. Tommy had an idiotic story, but at least it had some good friggin' songs on it!

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Posted: Thursday 21st Mar 2019 9:49 AM

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