The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom. - Wm. Blake

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Maximum R+B

I grew up in the aftermath of the rock era, when the airwaves were dominated by bands ten or twenty years past their primes, but whose new albums were still as anticipated as their more worthy predecessors. As any of you who've read my Friday Random Tens can attest, some of those have retained their hold over me, but I'm jaded - and mostly bored - by the majority.

The Who are a rather major exception. I find Pete Townsend an intriguing artist and individual, and the power of the band in their heyday leaves me wistful. I still resent that, for various reasons, my sister got my ticket to see them at Giants Stadium in '89. And though it's fallen into utter neglect - and disdain - by practically everybody, I still like Psychoderelict.

So as a result, I've been irresistably drawn to their new album, Endless Wire. Yes, I know that "they" is only half the band, including the individual that Pete, in an interview with the NY Times, identified as the bandmate who was least important to him. But, ultimately, it's Pete's songs, written with The Who in mind, and I want it to work.

Early indications have been positive, and the 3 tunes the Times had up were OK. But it was this video of the band (and the "new guys" have mostly been playing with the band for years and years - dig Zak Starkey's fantastic drumming) that made my heart race. In some ways, it's a throwback - Roger belts, Pete strums. But my response was visceral, not based on "oh good, more Who's Next." I dunno. Maybe it's just my viscera saying that, and my brain is rationalizing. I don't care. All I know is, there's a new Who album out. And I want it.


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