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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Who Album Got Better, but......
Who's Next, apart from having a brilliant cover, is for me the absolute studio peak for this band. The songwriting, recording, musicianship and

'feel' of the album remain stunning almost forty years after its release.

It was/is the perfect Who album, although so are The Who Sell Out, and Who Live at Leeds, and.....

BUT, in these days of...
Published on 16 Mar 2007 by Geoffrey Millar

versus
73 of 77 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Remastered versus remixed
This is a more technical comment on this re-release - obviously this is a full five star album, genius at its very height, etc.

However having listened closely to the "Deluxe" (2-CD) version of Who's Next against the earlier 1995 "Remixed and Digitally Remastered" (1-CD) version - they ain't the same (if you use iTunes, use Apple Lossless - you'll never go back...
Published on 17 May 2008 by John Basham


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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Who Album Got Better, but......, 16 Mar 2007
By 
Geoffrey Millar (Brunswick Australia) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Who's Next (Audio CD)
Who's Next, apart from having a brilliant cover, is for me the absolute studio peak for this band. The songwriting, recording, musicianship and

'feel' of the album remain stunning almost forty years after its release.

It was/is the perfect Who album, although so are The Who Sell Out, and Who Live at Leeds, and.....

BUT, in these days of CD, why do the record companies think they have to fill up the disc to give value? The bonus tracks are excellent and most welcome, of course, but why not (OK, I know it's dollars) put them on a second CD?

Won't Get Fooled Again was the perfect close to the record, but now it closes with Behind Blue Eyes: great song, but not the 'kapow' ending of the original. Of course, in these days of MP3 and IPods, you can re-jig albums in any way you like, but can you imagine Sgt Pepper ending with, say, an outtake version of Lovely Rita instead of Day in the Life?!

Anyway, enough griping. This is great stuff, and I defy anyone to avoid playing along with the drum break in Won't Get Fooled Again.

PS There is another issue of Who's Next, too. This is a 2 CD set which features a terrific, unreleased live collection from the Vic Theatre which was planned to be part of the Lifehouse project, I think. The first CD is the same as the first re-issue reviewed here.
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73 of 77 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Remastered versus remixed, 17 May 2008
By 
John Basham - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is a more technical comment on this re-release - obviously this is a full five star album, genius at its very height, etc.

However having listened closely to the "Deluxe" (2-CD) version of Who's Next against the earlier 1995 "Remixed and Digitally Remastered" (1-CD) version - they ain't the same (if you use iTunes, use Apple Lossless - you'll never go back to MP3, BTW - or FLAC with other players). The track lengths give this away, but on a good system, and particularly with good headphones, you will be able to tell the difference easily. Essentially the Deluxe sounds like a remaster only - i.e. taken from the original stereo master tapes, and a harsh one at that - whereas the 1995 version is clearly a remix from the original multitrack master.

OK, so what? Well, in almost every case (every case in my own view) the remixed versions - while sticking closely to the original mixes and overall production quality (and quite rightly so, this recording was also Glyn Johns' own masterpiece) have a clearer and more transparent quality that makes the vinyl/Deluxe versions sound sonically limited. Subtle details in the mix, tambourines, vocal inflections, even creaking studio chairs and background whispers become clear on the 1995 remix versions - it's uncanny, and for music/Who fans who really care about this album the effect is much like the (also remixed/remastered) 2-CD Tommy - which is frankly breathtaking and sounds like it might have been recorded last week. Studio technology was quite advanced from the sixties onwards, only the need to adjust things for vinyl messed up the sound quality. Revisting the master tapes allows modern listeners to hear what Glyn Johns would have heard in the studio. That is a precious thing for an album as important as this one and John Astley did an impressive job on the 1995 remix version - to my mind the Deluxe version lacks this added magic. So, my recommendation is buy both versions and check out the differences (and enjoy the additional live tracks on the Deluxe version, some of which are on the 1995 CD as well) - but if you only buy one, and for the original album, then get the 1995 1-CD version. It's subtle, but it takes this beautiful recording to another level.

Addendum: I recently got and compared the infamous Steve Hoffman-mastered MCA Canada CD version for comparison (available on Amazon.ca) - all of the above still stands true and the 1995 Remix/Remaster is still the best overall, however the MCA remaster is way better than the Deluxe CD1 version, more true to the original LP sound (and much clearer) but very organic, and is probably the best way to hear the original mix of the album in all its glory. It's certainly a great companion to the 1995 remix. Personally I can't listen to what they've done on the Deluxe version any more - most of it sounds hard compared to either of the other versions. Thank God for choice, eh?

Thanks for reading.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who's best, 29 Oct 2006
By 
D. J. H. Thorn "davethorn13" (Hull, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Who's Next (Audio CD)
'Who's Next' may have been compiled from the ashes of one of Pete Townshend's visionary projects, but it comes across like a straightforward album of songs. In my opinion, The Who are better in this mode. They are, after all, a rock band and an incredibly dynamic one at that. Whatever the merits of albums like 'Tommy', you can't beat The Who just getting on with being the hardest rocking band. That isn't to suggest that they play safe here. The most effective innovations tend to be the little touches and on this album they get the balance spot on, displaying imagination without losing the energy or disturbing the flow.

The synthesizer and violin on the classic 'Baba O' Riley' enhance the music, while the synthesizer opening to 'Won't Get Fooled Again' is instantly recognisable. Yet The Who don't overdo it as they do on the 'Who Are You' album, where the synthesizers tend to be intrusive. Though the aforementioned tracks are the stars of 'Who's Next', all of the others are great too. The band's ability to change gear and generate drama mid-song with those emphatic flourishes is testament to the technical brilliance of the musicians involved. You also get a brief opportunity to draw breath with the bewitching, gentle opening of 'Behind Blue Eyes'.

While the musicians are as good as ever, special mention should be made of Roger Daltrey's vocal contribution, which is easily overlooked. Here, his phrasing, timing and choice of delivery is inspired. He seems to know when to growl, yell, pause or just sing to suit each song. Admittedly, Townshend feeds him some great lines. The isolated lines, 'Meet the new boss/Same as the old boss' on 'Won't Get Fooled Again' stay with you, a masterstroke.

On this release, the bonus tracks are unusually impressive too. I particularly like 'Naked Eye'. Perhaps the best recommendation I can give is that I'm not one of The Who's biggest fans but I'd rate this as one of the ten best albums of all time.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rock at its best, 22 May 2006
By 
David Lovie (Aberdeen, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Who's Next (Audio CD)
A fantastic album, definitely up there with the best rock has offered over the last 50 years. A slightly more grown up and `rock' sounding Who compared to some of their earlier work, but still with all the classic sounds and features that made the Who so great, from Keith Moons rather mad drumming to Pete Townshend's huge chords and excellent guitar playing.

This album starts with Baba O'Riley, opening with a synth line that flows through the whole song (at times in the forefront, other times hidden under guitars) to which a simple few chords on piano are added and drums and the song gets into swing, Daltrey's vocals of teenage years and feelings, and the huge crashing guitars. Before later stripping right back down to the basics before building up again for the crash of the ending.

Bargain is another five plus minutes of classic Who rock, starting with some violin inspired guitar swells before launching into the song proper, a song of chasing that one girl.

I don't want to go through all the songs individually, but `Behind Blue eyes' must be mentioned, more lately known from a Limp Bizkit `cover' of it (some would say massacre) this is the original version as it should be. A heartfelt song of not fitting in and being the outsider, simple acoustic and bass playing and vocal line for a few verses until the song opens up with Keith Moon coming crashing in on the drums accompanied by Pete Townshend with huge crashing chords and riffs.

And on to `Won't Get Fooled Again' the original ending to the album (more recent versions have some extra songs added, and even more recently the release of the deluxe version with a second disc from one of the first gigs playing the new material, with some live versions of the earlier tracks and some old favourites) Another song with synths going in the background, opening up with one chord being hit on the guitar and the synth line opening, kicking in again. A song about moving forwards and advancing in life (I tip my hat to the new constitution.) and not getting left behind, the song advancing and breaking down, coming crashing in and moving along until everything is stripped back to just the synth lines playing along and modulating until the drums come kicking back in, and Daltrey's huge scream - one of those brilliant moments of rock.

The album was originally written as the concept album `lifehouse' which was deemed too complex and it was stripped back into the collection of songs you have here (properly released years later by Pete Townshend) but this album definitely isn't the remains of something else, as I said above, Definitely up there with the crème of the last 50 years of music
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What's Next?, 17 Feb 2008
By 
M. Dineen (NYC) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Who's Next (Audio CD)
The Who's zenith, and probably still unsurpassed for rock musicianship, cohesion, total sound, and explosive creativity by all four musicians. And Pete Townsend singing his patented lyrical interludes in so many of the songs, bookended by Roger Daltry's raw, gut-wrenching vocals. (Are these interludes something completely unique in Rock 'n Roll? I can't think of any other band that used the technique. In any case, they are are showcase for Townsend's amazing musicality that was equalled by few others, maybe only McCartney from that era). Plus we hear the entire, amazing, and deeply spiritual "Pure and Easy", which is only quoted at the end of "The Song is Over", both in studio and live. Pete's guitar is on fire in "Best I Ever Had", and the album would be classic if it it only had any one of "Baba O'Riley", "Won't Get Fooled Again", and "Behind Blue Eyes." This one had all, and then some. The album was and still is the soundtrack of its time for many of us old timers.

Has there since been a better Rock album? I can't think of one.

Do pop musicians still create at this level? I'm not hearing it.

What's Next? If it's anything like Who's Next, I can't wait to hear it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ahead of its time, 26 May 2007
By 
R. East (Newark, Nottinghamshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Who's Next (Audio CD)
Let's start with one thing. Pete Townshend is a musical genius and pioneer. Though he was to go on and write many more great songs (and still does), it was with Who's Next that The Who hit a zenith as a studio band. The album represents the peak of his output in sheer volume alone considering the songs that didn't make this album (Pure and Easy; Relay; Greyhound Girl etc etc). Pete's "Lifehouse" movie for which these songs were intended foresaw a world dominated by couch-potato, internet-fed drones who eventually find freedom through music. The lyrics to "Baba O'Riley" predicted a "teenage wasteland" - how true of today's hoody generation where young people are wasted (that's waste as in missed opportunity, not drugs as some think). Elsewhere, "Bargain" features lyrics that talk of a complete sacrifice to be with a loved one which only sharpen in intensity in the knowledge that they really relate to a spiritual not physical union. The album features some of the The Who's most underrated tracks: "Song is over"; "Getting in tune" and "Love ain't for keeping" are wonderful and show the depth and clarity that Pete Townshend had reached in his writing. The album is topped off by two of their most famous tracks - "Behind Blue Eyes" and of course "Won't get fooled again" which add to what is a pinnacle in rock music. My love for The Who rests in their ability to convey such primal power in their music and yet such subtlety in their lyrics. There is something very special happening in here. As a live band at their peak, The Who had no peers. On Who's Next they proved that they could transfer that power to the studio.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the pure & easy, genuine article, 11 May 2007
This review is from: Who's Next (Audio CD)
I love this album. I love the Who as they were in their glory days (approx up until the 'by numbers' album); no matter how often I listen to them I never get bored. It is absolutely timeless, great, CLASSICAL music what you hear on this album and others like Quadrophenia.
So why is this album their best?
Because of the sheer musical craftsmanship in every song. Because of the glorious collaboration of four totally different, at times violently clashing personalities - but when they really get into their groove, when all that energy and determination is channelled toward musical collaboration, oh boy they bring out the very very best in each other. Then it's sparkling, flowing, moving, rocking and breathtaking all at the same time. Four front men, each one capable of carrying the band alone, with corresponding big egos, but somehow managing to work with, rather than against, each other, and driving the whole to unparallelled musical heights on this album.
My favourite track is Behind blue eyes, because it epitomizes the Who's musical greatness: going from quiet+sad to bitter hard rocking (oh the bitterness! those lines, like When I smile tell me some bad news, before I'd laugh and act like a fool) and back to quiet, within three brief minutes, during which the listener is kept hanging onto every word and every beat.
Having said this, we have two more masterpieces on the album in Baba O'Reilly and Won't Get Fooled Again. I could make a similar case for WGFA being the best song on the album; in fact it probably IS the best one - a unique rock anthem that has never been equalled by themselves or any other band, owing to the pioneering use of synths and That Scream near the end - but do listen to the lyrics please! And then make up your own mind as to their meaning (speaking of lyrics: in between all the social/emotional/psychological seriousness, there is some lighter stuff as well, e.g. on Going Mobile, and especially John Entwistle's My Wife - pretty hilarious)
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh, The 'OO......Brilliant!!!!, 7 Feb 2007
By 
Markie "marx1977" (hereandthere) - See all my reviews
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Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Who's Next (Audio CD)
I bought this album for the first time when I was about 15 years old...Eons ago. I still have it at home now. Thing is, I hadn't listened to the album for years. Then one night when I came home from the boozer, what was on the box? A Keith Moon documentary no less. What more of an excuse can you ask for to dig out your old vinyl? Off we went, the vinyl on the deck...A crackle and a hiss, then voila...Who's Next Paradise. For the next few weeks a Who album was never off the record player. Shortly there after I bought the remastered edition of 'Who's Next' from Amazon at a bargain price. The thing is, as time goes by you do forget just how good music of the past really was. Even more so today with the charts full of talentless nobodies and you are brainwashed into thinking just because they can string a few notes together they must be good. For anyone who hasn't listened to this I strongly encourage you to do the right thing and click on the buy it now box immediately. It's truly a staggering piece of work. Then I must insist on you buying [...] DVD if you can find it. Then watch and learn as true rock legends perform awesome music and rewrite the rules of rock star hedonism.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome, uplifting music for life, 21 Aug 2000
By 
This review is from: Who's Next (Audio CD)
Well, what can I say that hasnt been said before? This album still gives me goosebumps when I put it on. The opener, Baba O'Reilly is Townshend's poem to Meher Baba, spiritual leader. It is uplifting, rocking and extraordinary. Bargain follows hot on the heels, and continues this incredible life afirming feeling. The album seems to grow as it goes on, and then you always have the tumultuous Wont Get Fooled again to look forward to. And the additional tracks are indispensable, especially 'Water'. Daltreys singing, Townshends guitar, Entwistle's rumbling bass and.....Moon. THE drummer of the modern age. I could bore you all for hours and hours........just buy it......give it 5 repeated plays and let it seep into every pore of you... Bliss. sheer bloody bliss.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There once was a note, pure and easy, playing so free like a breath rippling by..., 19 May 2006
By 
J. Patterson (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Who's Next (Audio CD)
Before buying this album it's important to consider that the Deluxe Edition contains a live disk which history may judge to surpass Live at Leeds, as great as that is. The two main things going for it -- it goes without saying that the band are on the top of their form -- are (i) the quality of the songs (the best of Who's Next, apart from Baba O'Riley, along with equally great songs from Lifehouse that didn't make it onto that album, above all Pure and Easy, but also Naked Eye, Water, I Don't Even Know Myself), and (ii) the quality of the sound, thanks to the Rolling Stones mobile. This remastered edition is great: the Deluxe Edition is incomparably greater.
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