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The Who - By Numbers CD (album) cover


The Who



3.52 | 184 ratings

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The Quiet One
Prog Reviewer
3 stars The Who explores the acoustic-realm....

Who would have thought a so acoustic and playful record after Quadrophenia? By Numbers is The Who's take on Zep's III, leaving their famed fierceful rockin' sound, to give space to their quietest desires, while still doing some rockin' here and there, but generally a acoustic-rock-driven album.

On comparison to Quadrophenia, this album is definitely a stinker, however let's try not to take in account this, and rate the album for it's own merits.

By Numbers makes The Who go backwards in time, ignoring almost for completely their impressive progression from Tommy up to Quadrophenia. Now to some songs:

There's barely bad songs all through the album, but to be honest, there's almost any memorable songs as their were in their previous efforts. The ones that are memorable here to some extent, are surely the opener, Slip Kid, with it's catchy sort-of percussion with the claps and subtle drums, and then developing a quite rocky style; the beautiful They're All in Love, with it's enchanting piano chords, and enjoyable sing- along chorus; the last track is the other memorable song, with it's powerful riff, and catchy chorus. The rest of the songs, belong to the forgettable songs tag, while not bad as I noted before, they definitely don't shine out, nonetheless they're enjoyable, and makes the acoustic/softer feel of the album possible. However, The Who hadn't really changed to a mellower band, the bonus tracks are proof of that, a live version of Squeeze Box and Dreamin' From The Waist, just tell you the band could still boody rock out loud live!

All in all, a decent effort by The Who, nothing really outstanding from the masters of ''outstanding powerful-rock''. The Who fans will surely find something to enjoy, and probably will think similar to me, while not being energetic nor featuring powerful guitar riffs with Keith's incredible drumming and John's killer bass lines, it still is a good record.

The Quiet One | 3/5 |


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