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The Who Reign O'er Me
on 24 May 2004
I had completely forgotten how good this album was until I bought the remastered version on CD from Amazon. It was probably the last great album the Who did, and they really put a whole lot into this!
There are no bonus tracks like other albums have, which is a bit of a disappointment, and maybe it could have been made into a single CD as 'Tommy' was. However, these are minor quibbles and don't at all distract from the fact that this is one of their best.
It's probably the only Who album that consists entirely of Pete Townsend songs, and unusually there is a Keith Moon vocal on 'Bell Boy'. Keith was notoriously bad at pitching, and was the only band member to be excluded from vocals most of the time. His performance as The Face's bell boy alter ego is perfect though.
Pete Townsend uses repeating musical themes in the same way that he did in Tommy, but this time there is more subtlety, and his composing skills have come a long way from then. There are some great songs, including the single '5:15', and other well-known numbers like 'The Real Me' and 'Love Reign O'er Me'.
From 'A Quick One' through to this album, the Who produced their best material. After this it was downhill, but they really did excel themselves with this album!