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Townshend to Complete "Lifehouse" 177

So I've been running Slashdot for 2 years just waiting for the story that Bobby Geortgilakis sent me. Finally an excuse to plug The Who. The deal is that Pete Townshend (the brains and genius behind The Who, the greatest rock band ever, not that I'm biased) is supposed to be completing Lifehouse. But why is this appearing on Slashdot? Read the article: Started in 1971 as a followup to Tommy, Lifehouse talks about Virtual Reality and The Internet (although it uses terms like "The Grid" since nobody really heard of TCP/IP and VRML back then) and the relevance of Rock Music (a pretty common Townshend theme anyway). So anyway, there it is. I got to mention The Who on Slashdot. Its a good day.

Who/Towshend/Lighthouse FAQ

Lighthouse was started after Tommy but aborted. The best tracks where filtered into 'Who's Next'. These include Baba O'Reilly and Behind Blue Eyes (2 of the most amazing tracks ever laid, and the among the first ever)

Pete==God. He is my musical idol. At this point I have every CD he has out- release Chinese Eyes on CD already!

Mods always win.

Roger was more than willing to roll around in the baked beans.

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Townshend to Complete "Lifehouse"

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  • I'm not a mod or a rocker....

    I'm a mocker....

    (btw, me and my buds were huge Who fans thru high school, my best friend got to see Tommy @ Radio City Music Hall twice, and we both saw the reunion tour (in Giants stadium) and Quadrophenia (in MSG). I still like them, but I've moved on to harder core stuff like Miles Davis, James Brown, Beethoven, The Orb, PWEI, Black Eyed Peas, Milt Jackson, Sergio Mendes & Brasil 66, MC 900ft Jesus, Stan Getz/Joao Gilberto.... Still, nothin beats throwing on 'Live at Leeds' or 'Sell Out' when the mood is appropriate..;)

    ps: Any chance of a DTS-remixed Live at Leeds within my lifetime? I'd _love_ to get the audience mixed ambiently thru my surrounds....
  • never really listen to the who, only saw pieces of tommy when i was young.. only remember that it looked very weird, a la kubrick.

    maybe should i give it a try.. which albums are you suggesting?

    i really like the sound of bands like the clash, how does it compare?

    about reznor and manson, they're just poor rip-off of nivek ogre from skinny puppy. sad he's never recognized for this.. anyway, i don't know if a lot of slashdot readers are into skinny puppy? by far my favorite band. i'm mostly into electronic and punk music. and philip glass :P

    i suppose i'm off topic and i'll be moderated down, oh well. for once we could talk about something else than license wars, red hat == microsoft, kde vs gnome, etc..


  • WTF does his orientation have to do with ANYTHING??? I've heard rumors to that effect before myself, but who the hell cares? I like a band for a band, not for the individuals that make it up. Oh and speaking of sodomy, Kinks are a pretty poor choice of band as well for homophobes like yourself... David Watts, mayhap? Lola??? I'll stop as I've already given you more attention than you deserve.


  • I don't care Who's Best and who's not. For me, a hack guitarist, Townshend is a guitar god. It's all in his tone and delivery--the incredible attack, the percussiveness, the barking, brittle tone. When I played in a 3 piece, I had to carry lead and rhythm, and Pete was my model for playing style; high priority given to rhythm, low priority to flying fingers doing musical masturbation. I haven't liked everything he's put out, but I always get a thrill from his playing. I don't listen with an attitude of "oh, someone else can play better than that." If no rock artist stretched the boundaries of the art after the paramenters were set, then who set those parameters? You mean no rockers stretched the boundaries beyond, say, 1950's style rock and roll? For electric guitar, give me Townshend any day. Or Billy Zoom!
  • i sorta agree with this. the closest i can get
    to relating to The Who is Rush (who have always
    had computer/technological themed
    songs/albums). and there has certainly been
    plenty of bands to cover the net, etc.

    what i find interesting is the number of posts
    to this thread in such a short amount of time.
    whats the deal with Geeks being into certain
    bands/types of music??
  • Anyone not on drugs.
  • It's a typo - deal with it. The word is spelled P-E-N-G-U-I-N. There's no Q in it.

  • Real alternative isn't dead, thank god. There's always an alternative to the crap on well-funded playlist obeying commercial stations.

    But you're right about NYoung kicking ass. Boy, does he ever.

  • Anybody who likes today's rock has to pay homage to the great Zeppelin.
    ... who made their name reworking a bunch of delta blues songs ...

    My point being not that Zeppelin sucks (I count myself a fan, and I'll note that there was some innovation going on in those reworkings; but have a listen to the Jeff Beck Group's "Truth" and you'll see that the Zep weren't the only ones thinking like that) or that we should all forget it after the Beatles, or anything like that.

    Mozart, Bach, Schoenberg, Les Paul, and let's not forget one of the ultimate derivative acts, Elvis Presley (the "real" Elvis for me is Costello), all contributed to inspiring whoever your favorite band might be, however indirectly.

    So let's leave it at that and let the Tacobeing bask in the glow of the news.

  • So are Roger Daltrey and Keith Moon going to be in this?

    I hope not ... I don't much like looking at corpses or listening to them try to play drums ... =)

    Now I'm gonna quote Wally Pleasant ...

    Keith Moon started smashing all my stuff

    Sid Vicious sat in the corner, trying to look tough
    Eddie Cochran was gettin' high with Bob Marley
    Roy Orbison just rode in on his Harley
    All the dead/all the dead/rock n' roll stars /rock n' roll stars/ were hangin' out in my apartment ...
  • While other bands come and go The Who stand the test of time.

    Other bands gave us great SOngs, the who gave use whole stoties. Quadrophenia and Tommy (the original not the movie or the play) are WORKS, they are complete stories wiht thematic concepts woven into a tapestry larger than thier parts.

    Even stuff like Ivan The Dirty Engine Driver and Psychoderlict reach for that level.

    Zep, Sabath, Hendrix, etc etc all are great musicians and song writters, but none of them ever got to the level of the WHo for making something greater.

    Songs versus Cycles

    Not that it diminishes the songs any, it is just that they are eclipsed by something greater.

    As to the Kinks, they are perhaps the one band that ever came closest to hitting the Whos status.
    Close, but they never seem to take as solid a shape.

    "you are all forgiven"
  • (Dylan going electric) was more important than anything the Beatles ever did!

    what about Elvis recording "That's All Right Momma" et al at Sun Records in the 50's? Dollars to donuts (god I love that expression) that launched a few musicians into the rock stratosphere.

    Side note: I saw BD just recently, he was pretty up and gave a pretty 'rockin' show -- I almost got the impression that his "All Along the Watchtower" was a tribute to Hendrix (speaking of whom, the performance at Monterey and Woodstock has got to count for lots of guitarists).

  • Because the FCC trusts the source (PBS, not Townshend). While PBS is not always staunchly conservative in what they broadcast, it remains clear that anything (remotely) offensive is recognized as art, as opposed to blatant ploys for ratings and commercial interests.

    In fact, I believe that PBS is where I first saw Smother's Brother's episodes* (years after the fact).

    Anyone remember the political fury over that show? Funny how things change.

    *I may be wrong. It's not unusual, and I don't have to be reminded of my fallabitily. Correct me if you feel compelled to do so.
  • Anybody who likes today's rock has to pay homage to the great Zeppelin.
  • I've been waiting for this since I first got into the Who, like 4 years ago. I'm 16, so I can't say that I grew up with them or anything, but god they kicked ass.

    I just hope it won't be like Psychoderelict -- I like Townshend's stuff mostly, but that album just plain sucked. His description of Lifehouse as a play with songs indicates that that's what he's heading towards -- I just hope he does it better this time.

    I can't wait!

  • If mods always win they why the hell was one getting chased around by a gang of leather clad rockers?

    This is sweet news. I discovered the Who when I was in 10th grade (I know, a late bloomer) and instantly they were my favorite band. Even now when I put in Tommy or Quadrophrenia I cannot do anything else but sing along with Daltry at the top of my lungs. I don't care if I can't sing because I just like doing it. My favorite song of all time is "Cut My Hair."

  • Pete released a new album a few years ago called "Psychoderelict" which seemed to me to be picking up on a few themes from Lifehouse. He also reworks some interesting (but dated) electronic riffs from a little known solo release called "Who Came First."

    I have "All the Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes" on CD already. They must have discontinued it... It is his single best work. From "The Sea Refuses no River" to "Slit Skirts" it is one of the most mature collections of rock lyrics ever. Pete is (IMHO) sometimes overrated as a guitar player, but he is even more underrated as a writer. The SOB can write!

    One track off "Psychoderelict" that shows his greatest guitar skill is "Early Morning Dreams." He is perhaps the greatest rhythm guitarist in rock music. He does percussive strumms on this track that are only matched in my experience by Richard Thompson. (This track screams "Lifehouse." It even begins with a digitized voice [Pete's] singing the reassuring phrase "You are safe from harm on the Grid. You are safe from harm...")

    He even deals well with the fact that he is a rock relic when rock worships youth. Think he can't write? Check out "Outlive the Dinosaur."

    Pete Townshend consistently knocks me on my backside with his stuff. He gets at truth. Also, since he is aging just a bit ahead of me I keep on finding his lyrics growing older and more sophisticated just as I grow old enough to appreciate them. His work also provides a path back to reckless youth -- two songs off "Who's Next" are veritable teen anthems (again, IMHO): "Baba O'Reilly" (more familiar as "Teenage Wasteland" -- loved it when it showed up in the trailer for "A Bug's Life," funny without being mocking) and "We Don't Get Fooled Again" which may be the most insightful of the protest/authority defiance songs of the "end of the 60's" (the album dates to the eraly 70's, but it is pre-disco, pre-shag). I still find "Meet the new boss/Same as the old boss" to be both shrill, youthful, and wise. Also simultaneously defiant and resigned. I can't think of too many from the 60's/70's generation who were both so passionate about changing the world and so aware that it is probably a lost cause. The song is positively Quixotic.

    Well, I've eaten enough bandwidth with this "me too!," but I share the enthusiasm for a guy I've often felt was loved for the wrong reasons and ignored by those who should love him.

    "After the fire/The fire still burns/The heart grows older/but never-ever learns/The memories smoulder/The soul always yearns/After the fire/The fire still burns"

    Yeah, for me too, Pete.
  • The Who will always be one of my favorite bands. Many of their tracks are better live than in studio. One weird thing quirks me. On one of the greatest hits CDs I have of them, they have the "Long Version" studio cut of Wont Get Fooled Again, but it's actually shorter than the typical 9 minute length. Hmm. Was able to catch Pete in concert, and even Entwhistle showed up to play "My Wife". Yay
  • So are Roger Daltrey and Keith Moon going to be in this? I hope Townshend doesn't dick over the remaining members of the band like Zeppelin did with JPJ.

    Actually I heard that they (the Who) all hated each other now and only got back together for monetary reasons. I wonder if they are going to use the already recorded versions of the songs, or record new ones.

    (the Keith Moon thing was a joke, btw)
  • It's sad how people fail to remember that before the Beatles did what they did, NO ONE ELSE had. Ask any serious musician conscious at the time and they all say the same thing: Sgt. Pepper blew their mind.

    If you're "grandma could figure it out", why didn't she? I could just as easily say "I could figure out that seatbelts might help save lives". But I give credit where credit is due.

    We're all entitled to our opinion, and our tastes obviously differ. However, I'd like to know which Beatles track sounds like a "cat caught in a vacuum cleaner." I'll defer on the subject of rock ballads, since I don't like any of them anyway.

    And I did not, nor will I ever, give props to Marilyn Manson. I think angst, teen or otherwise, is overused and often phony. I've enjoyed a few of NIN's tracks, and don't listen to KISS enough to have an opinion, except that their SuperBowl show was a prime example of selling-out.
  • I love the who, them the bealtles the stones, the cure bauhause, the clash, & dead can dance, etc

    This is great whos next is one of my best who album I just love the cover .........
  • Now who was it that did that obscure album about a kid in a wheelchair who hears pirate radio in his head? Came out about 10 years ago....

  • You're assuming that the only way to play Who tunes is with electric guitar. One of my non-coding activities is busking...with accordion. "Won't Get Fooled Again" and "Can't Explain" are accordion songs that don't yet know they're accordion songs. Hey, even Nine Inch Nails and KMFDM have some accordion-friendly tunes.

    (Maybe I could even modify the lyrics to "Won't Get Fooled Again to sing about Windows 2000: "Meet the new DOS...same as the old DOS...")

    Uh, by the way -- when you made this posting, were you powering your computer with a bicycle generator and connecting to one of those new-age solar-powered ISPs?
  • Last I checked, this was *your* site. You can post any darn think you like. You can post a thousand stories about the greatness of The Who.

  • Umm, Paul wrote Yesterday, not John.
  • There will be a great temptation to revise a lot of stuff. It's my hope that the original concept survives. But, look at what the greatest band ever, the Beatles, did with Jon's songs a couple of years ago.
    I just think projects like this should be left unfinished and just released as is without the Phil Specter symphonics added (reference: Let It Be).

  • Maybe Pete foresaw "Lifehouse" even before the deal with BBCRadio:

    Anyone else notice the saturation of Who songs in commercials right now?

    Nissan: Won't get fooled again
    Gateway: Who are you
    Dell: (I forget)

    Who else is using their tunes?

    At first I figured Townshend must be broke, but now it looks like he was just getting exposure to the music of Lifehouse.

    Downside: how many product images flow through my head when I crank the tunes on my radio!

    Downside2: advertising tie-ins for the firms that use the music
  • Wasn't this the rock-opera that eventually
    became "Who's Next?". That would be spiffy
    if he could integrate Baba O'Reily (O'Reilly?)
    and WGFA into a story so I can finally know
    what they hell those songs were about.

    Anyone see "Summer of Sam?" The best part in an
    otherwise flawed film was hearing Baba O'Reily
    full tilt during the climax.
  • Rizzo wrote: It's sad how people fail to remember that before the Beatles did what they did, NO ONE ELSE had. Ask any serious musician conscious at the time and they all say the same thing: Sgt. Pepper blew their mind.

    I don't want to go knocking the Beatles too much, but after a while they lost their cachet. Lots of other bands were able to beat the beatles out on an innovative front. It's just that the beatles were the first ones to cross the atlantic successfully.

    Psychedelic rock was already a hit out in California well before the beatles discovered it. On the same CA vein, anyone interested in the origins of the magical mystery tour should just read The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. The Furthur bus was the first.

    As for bringing in real rock and roll, I wouldn't argue that the beatles were the first to successfully bridge that gap. Bands like the Yardbirds and the Rolling Stones really did a far better job of synthesizing American blues and r&b with their own idea of rock.

    I've gone enough of a musical tirade.

  • Pretty cool. Pete Townshend is a genius, but did
    they find anyone to roll around in the baked

  • For me, what I love about rock is energy, pure and simple. That is their real talent to me. Some may surpass those blues musicians that you speak of in talent, and some play with the skill of a preschooler... but a great rock band has energy. They make you want to stand up, shake your fist and scream "Band at the time) Rules!!!"

    Jazz, blues and R & B is what rock & roll came from. To complain that Rock has tampered with the purities of these music forms is sheer nonsense. Do you complain that the Blues has fouled up jazz, or that R & B has fouled up the Blues.
    Do you bitch that reggae ruined ska, or that punk ruined rock?
    Music is constantly going through cycles, evolving and meshing with other forms. It pisses me off when people try and get in the way of that process.

    BTW I think today's Rock & Roll (in the pop culture) is completey dead. The bands that I see on MTV nowadays and hear on the radio are simply rehashing the same grunge basics from the early nineties. Personally, I think a fusion of heavy rock/glam bands would be great for the pop musical scene. I am sick of what is out there today.
  • Oh please, he gets attacked for having one too many Red Hat articles, or for posting an article about Microsoft, or for posting one too many Linux articles in a day, or for any number of other little nitpicks that anonymous cowards come up with just to try and divert the conversation to an attack on slashdot.

    Heck, I know I'd get paranoid about it after I while if I was Rob.

    But anyway, this is completely off topic. So let me mention something on-topic here.

    There are lots of books out there that have glimpses of the future. Books liek 1984 or Brace New World, or even Fahrenheit 451. Amazing (and good!) that they make kids read this in high school. At least I had to.

    Back to the topic, though, If he's just completing this, as in the story, how could it have been written way back when. Am I just losing it here?
  • 8. Pete's been rocking us for 30 years. Linux for only 6.

    1999 - 1991 = 6 years? Maybe I really do need to take math again.
  • Unfortunately, no one could ever replace Keith Moon (${DIETY} rest his soul).
  • Get the music-only version. The "play" stinks. Also, the song "Flame" stinks, but it was meant to stink. It was meant to be an example of marketable pablum.

    I don't think Pete has done anything lately to measure up to his first three major solo releases: "Empty Glass," "All the Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes," and "White City." (he's got other stuff in there like his demo releases and such, but these are the three major ones).

    I think "The Iron Man" was sort of a noble try. Anybody else heard "The Iron Man?" I'm interested in opinions. Especially if you are also familiar with the work of Ted Hughes. IMHO the album is good, but the rock-n-roll song just isn't the format for that material... I'd love to hear what others think...

    I think "Psychoderelict" stands on the strength of a couple of songs. Please don't hate me for this, but no 16 year-old can fully appreciate "Fake It." I'm not aying you don't get it -- I'm sure you do. You just have to be pushing middle age and have migrating hair to feel it fully.

    The music-only version of Psychoderelict stands up much better than the "play." "Let's Get Pretentious" is pretty amusing too... That doesn't mean any of it remotely approaches "Exquisitely Bored," "Slit Skirts," or "Somebody Saved Me" (which I have always believed to be the best of his numerous tributes to Keith Moon).

    As a last defense, I'd rather hear Pete try and come up short than hear anything from, say, Elton John, who hasn't taken a musical chance since 1977 and has released just shy of 734 albums since then...
  • I'll pass on the essay, but a short answer to "what the hell is a mod" would be interesting. I know what a rocker is, but I've never heard the term "mod" outside of slashdot, unless referring to an Amiga music file (those type of MODs are great, BTW).
  • Actually, it's owned by Rob is one of their employees who runs the site.
  • Bad Religion [] would be my choice.
  • What the hell is a Penquin? I've been seeing references to this mysterious being popping up on Slashdot quite a bit recently. Is a penquin related to a penguin, or are they separate entities? I always thought Tux was a penguin, but at least four people now have told me he's a penquin. Perhaps we'll never know...
  • . . .for no apparent reason. Weird. Anyway, though I love the Who--especially the albums "The Who Sell Out" and "Quadrophenia," and I have very ecclectic (sp?) musical tastes that range from rock to electronica to classical to Rap and beyond, I'm afraid my heart will always belong to The Beatles. Especially the Sgt. Pepper album; every time I hear the opening bars of "A Day In The Life" I get chills, an effect only "Teenage Wasteland" can equal. Anyway, good luck to them on this new one. . .god knows the world can always use more good music! __________________________________________
  • Pete Townshend has defined THE style for most rock/punk guitarists of our time. He was THE first to ever slide a microphone stand up and down the guitar (i think perhaps at the Isle of Wight festival) which has given inspiration to Sonic Youth's entire sound (i've never seen those guys play guitar without a screwdriver or something stuck under the stirngs). Also i beleive the Who were the first band to totally trash there instruments at the end of the set, im sure we all remember nirvana doing this. You have to think where would most of our major rock bands/idols be and what would they be doing to entertain there fans without the who?? These guys just did way too much for rock. I think they expanded the minds of some of the most influential artists of our time
  • Bruford?
  • You say Townshend is good? a good blues guitarist such as BB King or Stevie Ray Vaughn could knock him on his ass without thinking.

    Point to the best rock drummer and you can point to fifteen jazz drummers that can be immediately precieved as being entire orders of magnitude better without ever showing their entire skill set.

    The rock form is simplistic. Never has there really been a rock artist that stretched the boundaries of the art after the parameters were set, such as Miles Davis and Dave Brubeck did for jazz.
  • That was awesome! I was at a show for the '97 tour. I also saw an Entwistle solo show last sumer, basically an hour and a half long bass solo.
  • The Who were great, the BEATLES the best. If you weren't raised in the 60's, then you might be fooled. They started it all; it wasn't the money they made that drove it Gen X, it was cultural change.Pete Townshend is unfortunately no person you'd want your kids to grow up like, but then you'll find out about that in the next 15 years
  • The don't hate each other. However, whenever there's a reunion, it's usually because Townshend wants money. Otherwise he seems very reluctant to play with Entwistle and Daltrey, even though they are always up for it. Probably because Townshend doesn't want to become another Rolling Stones group that plays way too much after their prime, it cheapens the whole thing.
  • Hmm, that seems to make sense, except for the part about connecting mods to the punk scene of the 70s and 80s. How are these two groups connected? Apart from the fact that there was no unified "punk" scene (it covered everything from the leather-jacket wearing American Ramones to the British Sex Pistols and the fiercly political mohawk-wearing Dead Kennedys, not to mention the PhD-led Bad Religion), I don't see the connection to the mod scene you described.
  • So far Lifehouse has been broken up onto Who are You, Who's Next, and Psychoderelict. If you listen to Psychoderelict you'll hear songs mentioning the grid. Pete must have released 6 or 7 songs from his Lifehouse project leaving, what, 2 or 3 left?

    Chinese Eyes is on CD, the trick is finding cause I'm sure its out of print.

  • I would stress the greatest moment in "Rock"
    Rock as we know it that is.
    Elvis was very reasponsible for making a transition from Rhythm & Blues into Rock & Roll, but I would argue that no single accomplishment of his was the greatest moment in "Rock".
  • Well, the British band The Jam was conciously influenced by The Who and the mod movement in general, and was largely responsible for a mod revival in England. (The Buzzcocks were also musically/graphically influenced by mod, but they didn't interest themselves in the construction of a new Mod subculture the way The Jam - and later The Style Council - did.) The mod revival more or less followed on the heels of punk, and many youth who were bored of punk adopted the mod style instead (others became New Romantics).

    Scenes are almost never unified, since they are just aggregates of taste, stance and style, and they have their own trajectories as ideas in a culture. Punk is just a touchstone, a cluster of reference points which bands and kids could (selectively) cleave unto themselves. There was/is no unified punk scene, mod scene, rave scene, bluegrass scene, classical scene (I've seen feuds between different composer factions that make the KDE-Gnome rivalry seem like a quilting bee. Of course, I've seen quilting bee rivalries - um, never mind.)
  • BB King and SRV are exceptional, not just good. If it was as easy as you put it, then there would be throngs of worshipped guitar players.

    But its not all about talent, meaning raw musical chops, but the ability to create and market a product, that is to say the CD, video, and all that other stuff. I was playing Nirvana riffs 2 weeks after I picked up the guitar - but I can't just be him. He had a talent for connecting with people and creating a product.

    And the idea that rock artists don't stretch boundaries? Zappa, for one. Tool took metal, a dry genre at times, and gave it breath and life and most importantly intelligence. There's the metal-hiphop fusions. Techno. The list goes on and on.
  • I'm one of those trendy types that thinks they sold out once Big Daddy Brett quit. Comparing, say, Against The Grain to No Substance, hey thats no comparison, ATG wins. Even Stranger Than Fiction is better than the latest stuff.
  • I don't think it has anything to do with "selling out." I do agree that their recent stuff, while great, is not as good as their late 80s/early 90s stuff. The main reason is probably the fact that Mr. Brett left. Previously, Mr. Brett and Greg Graffin each wrote about half the songs on each album. They each have different songwriting styles, so it was a nice mix. The Gray Race, the first cd since Mr. Brett's departure (1996), is a great CD IMO, but since it's written entirely by Greg, it lacks the added quality that Mr. Brett's songs add. Basically, Greg's songs are still great, but they now have to carry the whole album, instead of just half of it. No Substance, their latest (1998) CD, on the other hand, is substandard, again IMO. It was an attempt to write everything in the studio by the entire band, instead of Greg writing the songs at home before going to the studio. I think he realizes it was a subpar album, because he said they're not going to try that again for the next album.

    Ok, that was probably too long a comment for a REALLY off-topic subject, but anyway =)
  • The Beach Boys came out with Pet Sounds a year before Sgt. Peppers was released. If you want to point at a ground breaking album, Pet Sounds deserves it more than Sgt. Peppers.
  • > Pete is (IMHO) sometimes overrated as a guitar player

    He never was a Guitar Hero in the conventional sense, but if you like the loud stuff his tricks on Live at Leeds are hard to overrate.

    > he is even more underrated as a writer. The SOB can write!

    You got that right!

    > This track screams "Lifehouse." It even begins with a digitized voice [Pete's] singing the reassuring phrase "You are safe from harm on the Grid. You are safe from harm..."

    I can't help but think there's some serious revisionism going on with this 'Grid' business. It doesn't seem to be a part of what I've read about the Life House project over the years, nor does it seem to be referenced in any of the old songs. In fact, songs like "Pure and Easy", "Gettin' in Tune", and "The Song is Over" seem to indicate that the "straight and narrow" that he wanted to get plugged in to was a mystically conceived Music rather than a material communications network.

    Not to knock it overmuch: I've been a humongous PT/Who fan since about the time he was originally working on it, and I've always felt like the Life House songs were the best he ever wrote (and therefore the epitome of rock music).

    But unfortunately, what little info the article gave seemed to indicate that he's continuing down the Broadway path (pun accidental, but appropriate), and I expect to be terribly, terribly disappointed with the results. Give it to us straight, Pete! These songs weren't written for Big Band and crooning milksops!

    There once was a Note -- Listen!
  • I want to grasp Pete firmly by the shoulders now and say firmly, over and over "Guitar, Bass and Drums, that's all. Guitar, Bass and Drums, that's all. (slap) You're not listening! Guitar, Bass and Drums, that's all..."

    He/They made Tommy on an 8-track, which helped convince them to throw out inessential crap. I fear for the project in this day of unlimited tracking.

    I didn't like Psychoderelict that much overall, but it did contain some amazing cuts. The story seemed kind of forced and the voice-overs were kind of annoying. Good effort, though.

    Pete was born to sing and tell stories with his guitar. The closer he stays to that, the better it gets.

    Gambatte, Pete! Keep Going!

  • So with about 75% of an album's worth of Life House songs scattered around Who's Next, Psychoderelict and such, maybe the good news is that he didn't have to write more than a couple (if any) new songs to round out the project. And that's a good thing, seeing as he hasn't put out a record with even two paricularly good songs on it since Chinese Eyes more than 15 years ago.
  • I *had* ATBCHCE on CD a couple of years ago
    but it was stolen when my apartment got robbed.
    So it *was* available here (Canada) at least.
  • Take this as a friendly advice, not an insult. But before you start talking about the "best rockband ever" you should get to know a little more rockbands, don't you think? I read your homepage where you list some of your favorite bands and the selection clearly indicates that you're still fettered by what the mainstream puts on your plate. Try some civil disobediance and explore music for yourself, you will find many many more rockbands you never heard of before which you may or may not find much better than the Who. The Who were hardly original, you'll see.
  • Townsend - homosexual yes, pedophile huh? Never heard that one.

    Believe it or not, some bands make it big because people like their sound. Some fade away (heard any New Kids on the Block lately), the really good ones stick around.

    I was hardly ever in sync with the musical times. I started listing to the Beatles in the mid-late 70's, the Who in the early 80s. Adored them then, still enjoy the music now. The last couple of years Ive started listening to old punk that came out when I was in high school. Hated it then, love it now (bands like X, Social Distortion, the Germs, the Ramones, Black Flag, the Jam, the Buzzcocks (love the commercial).

    Good music is good music, period. Good operating systems are good operating systems, period.

    And remember, the Who and the Beatles have NO money behind them anymore - they don't exist. The fact that a child like Rob listens to them years after they broke up indicates choice, not advertising. Don't you THINK?
  • Yeah, I actually liked the Iron Man a lot -- it followed the book pretty well, and was generally well-written. I was surprised to see a preview for a cartoon version of The Iron Man, then disappointed when I found that it was based on the book, not the musical.

    You're right about Physchoderelict -- there are certainly some great tracks on there, but the play was just so ludicrous and stilted that it really ruined it for me.

    And I kind of liked Flame.

  • Uh, actually, Zeppelin was the master of ripping off other bands. Listen to 'You Need Lovin' by The Small Faces sometime. Plant was completely shameless in his duplication of Steve Marriott - the first true Mod. (Too bad he burnt out so badly, tho'). I'm surprised Zep never got sued. Zep was the Pearl Jam of the 70s, assimilating the commercial aspects of their forebearers into a nice, neat, palatable package without the heart or a concept of what the original music was all about.

    My 2 bits.
  • Ive been up and down the musical dial, from Reich to Laidbac to the replacements to the whole .mod sceen to plastikman to webenr to mudhoney to cold cuts to crass to TSOL to Nurse With Wound to Eneme to Fear to Sonicyouth etc etc ad neauseum.

    From the most obscure to the most over hyped commecrials bands I have tried to listen to the music and its message rather than things like "are they cool enough" "if they are too popular I will have to hate them " "do they dress/speak/talk the way I demand they should"

    And still during all this traveling the WHo still have this theamtic opus qaulity few groups have hit on.

    Of the few bodys of works that tower over the who it is Zappa that is the most impressive of all.

    Oh yea, and brain wilson for the breife time of glory around the Pet Sound and Smile era
  • Oasis is not the Beatles fault!

    It's my job to freeze you. -- Logan's Run

  • The who who? He never said who he was talking about, who? The who what? wtf? I don't get it?

    oh wait, it's a band? i've never heard of them, can someone name some songs? I dont think ive ever heard of anything by "the who?"

    $mrp=~s/mrp/elite god/g;
  • > No halfass rock drummer could ever come near Buddy Rich or Gene Krupa

    But Keith was "the best Keith Moon style drummer" there ever was.

    (Jazz fans will be excused for not catching the reference.)

  • Of course, EVERYBODY knows that the Who was a Trio--
    Daltrey, Townshend, and Moon--Entwhistle was just there for the ride,
    and PIGS FLY! John Entwhistle was just as much a member of the
    Who as Daltrey, Moon, and Townshend and deserves more credit than
    THIS group seems to give him. In fact, I'd say that Townshend wouldn't have been
    recognized as a genius without Entwhistle making him look good.
  • > only saw pieces of tommy when i was young.. only remember that it looked very weird, a la kubrick.

    That was Ken Russel's interpretation, so it had to come off kind of weird.

    > maybe should i give it a try.. which albums are you suggesting?

    I think most fans would label Who's Next as their classic among classics, and whenever critics or consumer votes ever named the best Rock albums, that one was sure to be near the top of the pack.

    If you like LOUD MUSIC, try Live at Leeds.

    For something more austere, and which may require some growing in to, try Tommy (the studio album -- not the soundtrack).

    For maximal R&B, try My Generation, though the world weeps while waiting for some jerk to die and let the copyright fall into hands that will remaster it. (I've heard the old remastered LP, and yes, it does make a difference.)

    For something a bit quirky but exquisitely tart, try Sell Out.

    And then, of course, there's all their other albums...

    In general, the remasters of the albums before Who's Next help the sound considerably (and to a good extent on Who's Next as well), and the bonus tracks are real treats for fans, but unfortunately the added material unbalances the albums as albums. (The Who were always more an album band than a singles band.) So if you do buy one, read the notes to figure out where the original stopped, and make yourself turn it off at that point for the first dozen or so listens, so you'll get a feel for the masterful organization of the originals. Then go back and treat yourself to the bonus tracks.

  • Excuse me ? Dave Brubeck pushed the bounderies of jazz ? I'm sorry but that's frankly that's crap. Whilst being a fan of Brubeck's writings, the only innovation done was in the form of his rhythms and emphasis on the beats, but this came mostly from Paul Desmond who started with "Take Five" and then carried on to inspire Brubeck. When the band split, Brubeck went to classical composition... it's only been in the mid-nineties that he has completed a few reunion tours with the rest of the band.
  • Well, that was their first hit, anyway ;-)

    while(1){("Whooo are you"; backing(who who who-who-who);)} /* The Song -- To get it in your head */

    Also, there are quite a few others, that stick in your head, without you even remembering that it's The Who that sung it.
  • Did anyone know that the cover of Who's Next was designed as jab a Kubrick? It shows the band relieving themselves on a big rectangular monolith that looks like the one(s) in 2001. Supposidly they were mad a Kubrick because he was rude to them when they asked him to direct the film version of Tommy.
  • Sure mods beat rockers - who can't? But punks beat mods any day!

    When I were but a young lad growing up in SW England, there were always rivalries between the Exeter punks and the Exmouth mods. It was all no contest really. Mods never stood a chance! (Having said which, I do remember being chased through the shopping centre by a gang of 6 mods one time!)

    We all listened to pretty much the same music though! It was a confusing time.

    Fly the flag - Hang a mod!

  • "Townsend's a sodomite"

    And you, Sir, are a troll.

    You criticise 'Townsend' (it's Townshend) for being a 'sodomite' and then recommend the Kinks.
    Very droll, Mr Troll.

  • Roach was overrated - only the "in" crowd kept playing up to him in order to maintain their credentials as to being "cool". Nowhere near the boundary stretcher that Brubeck in his medium. Hell, most of his licks can be duplicated by Neil Peart (spelling?), heh.
  • Long live rock.

    That being said, an entirely different three-word phrase:

    Johann Sebastian Bach.
  • Alright. Not brief, still incomplete, and both too theoretical and simultaneously unrigorous, but here it is -

    Mod was short for Modern. Originally, it referred to young enthusiasts of modern Jazz in England in the late 50's - and was usually contrasted to the big-band loving "Trads"," or traditional jazz enthusiasts. (See the novel Absolute BeginnersP by Colin McInnes) Postwar Britain had a number of youth cultures running around - aguably a consequence of the availability of American culture, the unavailability of American wealth, and the growing realization that the British Empire was gone. The Mod movement eventually grew beyond the jazz scene, and adopted other musics as part of its repertoire - Jamaican ska (like Desmond Decker, and Lee Perry and the Upsetters), and the new British pop (The Kinks, The Who, and the Small Faces)

    Mods were young, lower-middle class youth who usually had jobs. The movie Quadrophrenia was set in 1963, when literally thousands of mods descended on Brighton Beach, and riots broke out between them and the Rockers, a sort of 50's-preservation subculture that rode motorcycles and wore leathers (a la Marlon Brando in "Rebel without a Cause")

    Anyway, the movement snowballed and picked up other cultural reference points - many Mods became enthusiasts of Italian culture, mimicking the popular hairstyles and clothing fashions of Italy and adopting the Italian scooter as the iconic means of transportation. Mod styles changed fast and furious - what might be completely stylish one year would be utterly dated the next.

    Mod styles revived in the wake of punk in the late 70's and early 80's, but without the dynamism and vitality of the original period (Pete Townsend was frankly contemptuous of the neo-Mods). The Mod Revival was an ironic oxymoron - an attempt to preserve as a static tribal identity the images and fetishes of a movement that was originally all about change, dynamism, and neophilia - the Mod of 1958 looked nothing like the Mod of 63 who looked nothing like the Mod of 68, but the Mod Revivalists of 1977 through the nineties all look alike, largely taking their cues from the film Quadrophenia. Personally, I think that the mod commitment to novelty survives more in the electronic/club music and post-rock scenes than in the self-style mod ones.

    Disclosure: I must admit I did some time in the west coast mod scene, and I still have a nostalgia for my old Vespas, especially my 1963 150 VBB.
  • > This is great whos next is one of my best who album I just love the cover .........

    The photo shoot was supposedly happenstance, but I always thought it was probably meant to evoke 2001:A Space Odyssey. The satirical irreverence would be perfect for the band in that period.

  • I think your analysis is right on. I would, however, encourage you to give Who Came First a listen if you haven't yet, even though he now shrugs it of as "demo tapes". His singing style hadn't developed yet, but the compositions are phenomenal.

    I heard Iron Man before I read the book, so my perspective would be warped with respect to your question. I agree that it falls after his best period, though I think it would have been much improved if he had sung it all himself.
  • "You say Townshend is good? a good blues guitarist such as BB King or Stevie Ray Vaughn could knock him on his ass without thinking. "

    BB is too old to knock anything on its ass and Stevie is just dead (he is eternally resting on his ass). Townshend wins this round.

    "Point to the best rock drummer and you can point to fifteen jazz drummers that can be immediately precieved as being entire orders of magnitude better without ever showing their entire skill set. "

    Who is doing the perceiving? The people who can enjoy various forms of music, or those who have to find the superior form and champion it against all comers?

    "The rock form is simplistic. Never has there really been a rock artist that stretched the boundaries of the art after the parameters were set, such as Miles Davis and Dave Brubeck did for jazz."

    Is simple bad?

    I'd say about 5% of all music is good, with this rule applicable across all genres.

    You can prove the superiority of your favourite music until you're blue in the face, and in the end nobody will care. Everyone will go on listening to their favourite tunes. The more suggestible among us might feel a bit guilty. But I'm pretty sure that those old Knack albums and Ramones CD's aren't going to be chucked into the garbage, just because they are "inferior" to Miles Davis or Dave Brubeck.

    Disclaimer: I don't own any Knack or Dave Brubeck, but I do own a huge pile of Ramones. I did buy "Kind of Blue" by Miles Davis this week. I thought it was OK, but I didn't throw out my other 1,300 CD's.
  • I know the gay community picked up on "Rough Boys" and people have tried to make a scandal of it, but it doesn's really seem to say much that can't be interpreted nine different ways.

    The funny thing is, with all the the buzz about "Rough Boys", no one seems to be aware of his songs where he really did delve into gender identity issues.

  • It is always the combination of extings forms (Jazz and Rock) that brings out the most interesting parts of each. Take for example Mahavishnu Orchestra or any Miles Davis after "In A Silent Way" or any of Bill Bruford's stuff. As soon as you keep one form of music pure for too long it will staginate.

    Just my .02

    Alex DeWolf
  • (Well, it's as good a title as any.)

    Okay, so "Behind Blue Eyes" and "Baba O'Reilley" are certainly very good (though I've heard them so many times, there's no way I can judge their degree of greatness anymore). There was some other really good material from the "Lifehouse" project that appeared on the nearly forgotten Townsend solo album "Who Came First?". This is a weird album in a lot of ways: On the down side, the production of it seems kind of flat somehow (I suspect they tried to get by with too many studio overdub tricks, and the absence of the rest of the Who really shows). But on the plus side, some of the songs are amazing, in particular "Nothing is Everything", a great nihilistic/existentialist anthem. (This song makes a great contrast to the more religious/spiritual "Pavardigar" on the flip side).

    There is also a not-very-exciting version of "Pure and Easy", which as I remember it was also supposed to be a "Lifehouse" song... if you add all of these up, it doesn't leave a lot of room for Townsend to write new material... (There will also be previously unheard songs written and performed by Townshend.). This means he must of had to *cut* something, and that definitely doesn't sound good to me.

    And yeah, the inclusion of "The Grid" stuff makes it sound to me like there really is some revisionism going on here. It's not completely impossible that Townsend could have come up with a VR-like scenario in the early 70s, but I really doubt it. It seems much more likely that he's lifting elements from his more recent "Psychoderelict" project.

    And personally, I thought "Psychoderelict" wasn't great, but certainly wasn't awful. Maybe it didn't quite add up to anything, but he was playing around with a bunch of interesting elements. For example, witches tits.

    (And personally, my favorite drummer these days is Gino Robair [] -- formerly of the Splatter Trio. If you think Keith Moon was energetic and sloppy, you should try and catch Gino live some time...)

  • Back when I was younger, the smell of french fries and burgers would waft at my nose while playing Asteroids at the local greasy spoon. One thing that I liked to do was put my name in the high score list in such a way that it would spell


    So, how will we do that in the internet world?

    Alright, so it isn't exactly that great a comment, but it is on topic (somewhat)..

  • Bruford rules, and so does Christian Vander.
    NP: Hedningarna, s/t
  • check out "the amazing crowns" (formerly amazing royal crowns) for some good modern day rock/rockabilly. They are on the warped tour this year, and they are damn good, new CD coming out soon too.
    -Matt Jankowski
  • Posted by polar_bear:

    Hey Rob,
    Pete is an awesome songwriter and guitarist - I got to catch the Who live in '89 in St. Louis and can attest to it personally - but give the other three guys their props. Roger Daltrey's voice is freaking incredible, even now. John Entwhistle is bar none the best bass player on the planet (IMHO) and Keith Moon...sigh. Keith, oh how we miss ye! No one, and I mean no one, embodied rock and roll more than Moon the Loon.
    This is indeed good news that we'll be getting some 'new' music from Pete. I don't quite have everything, but about 15-20 of my CDs are Who / Pete albums.
    Personally, I don't think Who postings are off-topic...Rock News is also News for Nerds...

  • Your ass is obviously so tight that if one were to shove a lump of coal into it, inside of 2 weeks, he'd have a diamond.

    How's that for perfect English?
  • There are many steps to professional writing (I say expertly as someone with little talent for that sort of thing...). He may well have written the whole thing as a draft back then, and recently polished it, He might have left the ending open and just now found it. etc etc.

  • I searched for the MP3 of "Won't Get Fooled Again" for weeks and finally broke down and bought "Who's Next." The Liner notes are awesome (written by Townshend himself). He talks about how he fucked up the whole Lifehouse thing and the songs that he'd written became Who's Next. (He also talks about what a wonderful genius he is.)

    I never was a fan of the who (give me Zeppelin any day), but Won't Get Fooled Again is truly an awesome song, and Behind Blue Eyes is great also.

    I, too, would like to see what the "meaning" behind the songs was. "Teenage Wasteland..." "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss..." He said it was supposed to be about a Utopia or something.

    (on a completely unrelated note, I would also like to know what the meanings are of those movies at the end of each level of Tekken 3. They're so weird, they confuse me. Jin sprouting wings and all...)

    Oh, and it's "Baba O'Riley".
  • Jethro Tull. No song can stop Aqualung.
  • > The best part in an otherwise flawed film was hearing Baba O'Reily full tilt during the climax.

    The Who have done pretty well at the cinema this year, for some unforseen reason. Summer of Sam makes the third flick that I've seen/heard-of that featured a Who track.

  • I agree. But I was thinking of Ann Margaret in
  • damn right they do!
  • oh, BTW it's a personal goal of *mine* to be able to mentions mods (no not amiga .MOD files!!!!) on slashdot. woohoo!
  • Bridging the geek and mod gap -

    The first Mission pack for Grand Theft Auto is set in London, 1969 - it's the main reason I got the silly little game - has an incredible soundtrack of 60's era ska, reggae and mod music (and a lot of period touches, like Mod gangs, Teddy boys, purple hearts, and the like.) A lot of fun - and one of the few games that plays well in the main environment in which I play games: on a laptop, on an airplane, travelling for work.

    I could write a little essay on my take on the Mod movement, but Dick Hebdidge's "Subculture - The Meaning of Style" is a good shot at it.
  • i'm with you! i saw the Who in concert three summers ago or so. they performed the whole Quadrophenia album with the video on the screen in the background. it was crazy ... however one of my most vivid memories is John Entwistle (no 'h') going nuts on the bass guitar for about a 7 or 8 minute solo during '5.15'. it was INCREDIBLE!
  • by the_tsi ( 19767 ) on Tuesday July 27, 1999 @06:19PM (#1780173)
    (Originally posted on the poll, but this story seemed more appropriate... :) )

    10. Tommy didn't need Linux. Why should I?
    9. My g-g-generation won't get fooled again (by Bill Gates, that is).
    8. Pete's been rocking us for 30 years. Linux for only 6.
    7. Linux hasn't been ported to Momma's Squeezebox.
    6. Tux the Penquin? Nah. Boris the Spider!
    5. Quadophenia fits on 2 CDs. Red Hat uses 3.
    4. When "The Who Sells Out", everyone laughs. When Red Hat sells out, we're gonna cry.
    3. Teenage Wasteland? Try Playstation, not Linux.
    2. Pete Townshend's arm swing kicks the ass of Bob Young's hat any day of the week.

    And the number 1 reason Pete Townshend beats the hell out of Linux:
    1. Best of The Who: $8.98. Best of Red Hat: $79.95.

  • Personally, I like all three for different reasons and in different moods. To me, they are three entirely different contexts. Any coexistance in time is an illusion, plot them in a 5-space and there is no intersection.

    The Who is reflections on society and interactions

    The Beatles is self reflection and states of being.

    Led Zeppelin is emotional introspection and states of emotion.

"Remember, extremism in the nondefense of moderation is not a virtue." -- Peter Neumann, about usenet