Album no. 59/1001
After this album, The Who pretty much became the spokespeople for “THE YOOF” of the 60s with their teen anthem ‘My Generation’.
Interestingly, the band didn’t really like the album and thought it was super rushed – despite the fact that it now consistently appears on best-of lists. A couple of the tracks – ‘The Kids Are Alright’ and ‘I’m A Man’ – were also cut or edited in the US release because America couldn’t handle these cheeky brits.
Have you listened to this album before?
CL: Never. I’ve certainly heard most of their big songs, but not a whole album.
NK: I have heard most of this. I had a pirated version that didn’t have ‘The Kids Are Alright’ on it, and when I heard that song for the first time at a party I got into an argument because I didn’t believe it was the Who. Classic Ned.
CL: Tell you what, ‘La La Lies’ has MORE than a passing resemblance to The Beatles. Am I listening to the right album? I definitely am listening to the right album. Weird. Anyway. ‘The Good’s Gone’ is more what I expected. Let’s be real though, the standout is easily ‘My Generation’ by a MILLION BILLION MILES.
NK: ‘My Generation’ is the best, but I like ‘The Kids Are Alright’ and ‘Much Too Much’ as well.
CL: I really wish they had foregone the piano on this album. I feel like piano really softens the rock sentiments here. Like on ‘The Ox’. Starts out SUPER promising, but then that piano comes in and it just reminds me of Meatloaf and it’s ruined. (That’ll be a fun review to write when we reach 1977).
When would be the best time to listen to this?
CL: When you want to be King of the Mods.
NK: Maybe when you’re on your vespa heading down to Brighton for the weekend.
Why has this album been included on the list?
CL: This is really weird! I imagined this album would be full of thrashy, chaotic songs like ‘My Generation’, but that one is sort of the odd one out on this record. I mean, include it for that song alone obviously, but the rest are pretty meh.
NK: I’m pretty sure this was mostly a collection of songs the band had, rather than an album as a whole. I think the production (particularly on ‘My Generation’) is really raw compared to what the rest of 1965 was sounding like. Keith Moon cutting loose on the drums probably didn’t hurt either.
Will you be listening again?
CL: I really wanted to like this album. I gave it a couple of listens just to make sure. But maybe my expectations got the better of me. This wasn’t what I thought it would be – ‘My Generation’ steals the bloody show. Everything else falls incredibly short.
NK: I really like a handful of songs, but the whole album is not up to scratch in my opinion. Sorry The Who, maybe next time.