NY Post on MSG
brianinatlanta2001 at yahoo.com
Mon May 24 06:11:35 CDT 2004
WHO? ONE FOR THE AGES
By DAN AQUILANTE
May 24, 2004 -- IN "My Generation" one of the greatest
stuttering songs in rock, tongue-tied Roger Daltry
stumbles into the line "Hope I d-d-die before I g-g-
get old" and if you weren't at Madison Square Garden
Saturday for The Who show you'd probably think "Too
You'd be wrong.
Despite this band's high mileage and very long
history, at this gig principals Daltry and Pete
Townshend demonstrated that even though age is in the
bones, youth is in the head. The pair were vibrant,
energized and exciting as they pushed this Who
performance to the short list of the year's best
With The Who playing the Garden for a full house of
rabid fans (who gobbled up all the tickets within 20
minutes of going on sale last month), Townshend's
guitar guns were primed. From crashing windmill strums
on the upswing, to delicate finger picked refrains,
The Who mastermind was inspired.
At a Who show there are no smoke machines, flash pots,
or gimmicks. Everything was about the music. The
multiple video screens weren't there to flash silly
images at the crowd - they were used to zoom in on the
band so that even it you were stuck in the nosebleed
seats, you still got a close-up look at the
The Who opened with "Can't Explain" and played "Magic
Bus," set to the Bo Diddley beat, as the encore. In
between there was no filler. "Won't Get Fooled Again"
was the night's fist-pumping anthem, the drug-addled
commute of "5:15" was a hot ticket and "Who Are You?,"
"Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere" and "Substitute" among the
As wonderful as the night was, even a veteran group as
slick as The Who screws up once in a while. At this
show it was Daltry who slipped up on the mike.
He whipped the microphone around his head lasso-like,
as he did throughout the gig. Chalk it up to sweaty
hands or a slippery mike, but during "Pinball Wizard"
he lost his grip, allowing the microphone to sail out
into the house.
After the very surprised and slightly embarrassed
singer reeled his equipment back in, his histrionics
were markedly more conservative.
Hey, Roger, hit the notes, not the fans.
While the one-two punch of Daltry and Townshend is key
to The Who, the chemistry they have developed with
their drummer Zac Starkey (Ringo's son) is vital.
Starkey has the same intuitive beat that his long-dead
predecessor Keith Moon had, yet Starkey doesn't try to
ape Moon's style. Instead he finds the rhythm in
Townshend's rapid strums and counters them with his
drumming. It's simple and completely effective.
While most bands of their generation have gotten old,
or died, this show proved The Who are still on first.
-Brian in Atlanta
The Who This Month!
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