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The Who - Who's Next CD (album) cover


The Who



4.36 | 535 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars The powers that be have determined this to be a prog album, and who am I to argue? The only problem I have with this album is its popularity: I don't want to hear these songs used to shill cars, animated movies, or rediculous procedural crime dramas (yes, I specifically mean you, CSI! Splicing up classic Who songs has lost you at least one viewer!). Other than that, these songs resonate as well with me today as they did when Who's Next was given to me--the first CD I ever owned. What follows is a BRIEF summary.

Baba O'Riley. In my book, this is pure gateway prog: great synth sequences, bombastic power chords and vocals, and even a fiddle jam to round things out. And this in 1971? You've got to be kidding me--these guys were phenomenal.

Bargain, Going Mobile, Behind Blue Eyes. Here are the proto-prog tunes in my eyes. The first two songs are primarily about rock, but they also have creative (if simplistic) song structures, jams and use of synths. As far as Behind Blue Eyes, you can't tell me that Arena or Marillion have used blatantly emotional (and potentially cheesy) lyrics to greater effect. All great stuff.

Love Ain't for Keeping, My Wife, The Song is Over, Getting in Tune. Here The Who take a definite break from prog. That's no problem here, because all of these songs are high-quality (if not terribly catchy), and not allowed to extend longer than their quality warrants.

Won't Get Fooled Again. And the prog rock returneth, in the grandest of fashions. We've all heard it, and we all love it, from the great keyboard underlying the whole song to the plentiful power chords to the awesome vocals. It's paradoxical to me that a song can be so uniquely British, yet at the same time so universal. Suffice it to say, this foursome meant serious business when they laid this one down.

When the world gets you down, sometimes all you need is a primal Daltrey scream, some Townshend power chords, and Moon's incessantly hard-driving drums. Here is where you find them in abundance. Have this available at all times.

Flucktrot | 4/5 |


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