... you just know he means the 70s Who. I want my President to take a firm stand preferring pre-"Tommy" Who to post-"Tommy" Who.
Damn straight I mean the 70s Who. At least if we define the 60s as having ended in 1968, as I believe George Melly (or some other cultural arbiter) did:
- 1969: Tommy, # 96 on the Rolling Stone's list of the 500 all-time greatest albums (do I detect a bit of Tommy hate, Ann?)
- 1970: The Concert at the Isle of Wight. The DVD is spectacular, IMHO.
- 1970: Live at Leeds, "considered to be one of the best live albums ever" (Wikipedia)
- 1971: Who's Next - 28th on Rolling Stone's all-time album list. IMHO, it ought to be competing with Born to Run for the # 1 slot. I agree with the blogger/reviewer who wrote that: "Baba O' Riley and Won't Get Fooled Again are the best songs The Who ever did. I immensely love Bargain too. The other classic is Behind Blues Eyes." Ditto.
- 1973: Quadrophenia
None of which is to take anything away from the pre-Tommy period, but surely no serious Who fan would deny that the band had reached its artistic prime in the 1969-1973 period. To be sure, as Mike Bennett notes, there is "a popular contrarian viewpoint from a certain segment of fans" that, "about the time of Tommy, The Who went downhill." Bennett, however, goes on to explain why "anyone who thinks the later Who was a much lesser band is just full of it."
I wouldn't go so far as the reviewer who wrote that "if you are a big fan of early Who albums and think they were excellent and better than the bombastic era albums, then you are most likely an idiot (or a 60s music elitist) with crap taste in music ...." (Certainly not while replying to as skilled a controversialist as Ms Althouse!) I would agree, however, with that writer's assertion that the "Pre-Tommy era Who was capable of producing great singles, but not great albums."