God only knows how many times I have played this record and ALWAYS from beginning to end.
As a teenager “Baba O’ Riley” was the Anthem of every start of the week-end, when thoughts about tearing the shit out of things was a predominant thought. In College “Behind Blue Eye” was a standard at parties when the need to make out arose and “The Song Is Over” was notoriously played at the end of every party we threw and so it went on accompanying me when I got married with “My Wife”, my first divorce with
“Won’t Get Fooled Again” and through endless life adventures Who’s Next has ALWAYS been by my side, on the radio, on the cassette, on CD in my car, on Vinyl in my house and simply everywhere.
How can a record with such madness retain its shape and meaning through the decades is a mystery to me, and just last month I saw a documentary in which they isolated Keith Moon’s drums on this record and as you listen to his madness you simply wonder if The Who were not from another planet, and somehow we all drank their cool-aid and entered their “trip”, unaware that we were listening to mad man.
But madness aside, this record belongs to ANYONE’S list of Top 100 albums of all time, let alone my list which are the best albums to listen to front to back.
Out here in the fields
I fight for my meals
I get my back into my living
I don’t need to fight
To prove I’m right
I don’t need to be forgiven
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Don’t raise your eye
It’s only teenage wasteland
And so we drank the night away.
Roger Daltrey: vocals
Pete Townshend: guitar, VCS 3, organ, ARP synthesizer, vocals, piano on “Baba O’Riley”
John Entwistle: bass, brass, vocals, piano on “My Wife”
Keith Moon: drums, percussion
Dave Arbus: violin on “Baba O’Riley”
Nicky Hopkins: piano on “The Song Is Over” and “Getting in Tune”
Al Kooper: Hammond organ on alternate version of “Behind Blue Eyes”
Leslie West: lead guitar on Record Plant sessions including “Baby, Don’t You Do It” and “Love Ain’t for Keeping” (electric version)
The Who: production
Glyn Johns: associate production, recording, mixing
Doug Sax: mastering
Kit Lambert: executive production
Chris Stamp: executive production
Pete Kameron: executive production
John Kosh: album design
Ethan Russell: photography