New York Post on Izod
brianinatlanta2001 at yahoo.com
Fri Oct 31 12:44:38 CDT 2008
Who Rocks Every Generation
by Dan Aquilante
THE Who - who sing that they hope they die before they get old - played a killer concert at the Meadowlands' Izod Center Wednesday.
Guitarist Pete Townshend and singer Roger Daltrey, together since 1964, are rockers hardly ready for rocking chairs. The two-hour performance was high-energy, loud, fast rock that made the intergenerational audience feel the beat and move to the music.
In one of the many between-song chats, Townshend reminisced about playing New Jersey years ago. He said, "There was this snotty kid named Bruce watching the show...and then, a few years later, we were the snot-nosed kids watching him."
At the Meadowlands, on Springsteen's home turf, just his name evoked the standard "Bruuuuce" bellow from the fans. That story of musical influence was made more real when The Who did "Baba O'Riley." In that song the drums, piano accents and theme of alienation in "teenage wasteland" seemed like a stepping stone to "Born To Run."
Where other vintage acts meander into tired nostalgia performances, The Who stitched together a very smart mix of the band's newest songs from the 2006 album "Endless Wire," with some back-catalog deep cuts and, of course, classics.
One of the newest songs, "Fragments," was very good, and the dusty "Sister Disco" retained enough relevance to be included. But where The Who really wowed was in the retooling of their signature songs - with some not-so-standard arrangements.
In a night where the song "Behind Blue Eyes" was a knockout and the encore was an abridged version of the seminal rock opera "Tommy," the song that epitomized the bands dedication to youth remains "My Generation."
That song started the way it always has, with Daltrey swinging his mike above his head by the wire and singing, "People try to p-p-put us d-d-down, just because we g-g-get around," but as he stuttered his way through the tune and Townshend banged chords with windmill strikes on the strings, the song expanded into unknown territory of an extendedjam.
Like this concert, that song's old yet new quality messed with your memory, but didn't detract from the message or music.
-Brian in Atlanta
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