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Customer Review

12 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Warts and all., 19 May 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: The Who Live At The Isle Of Wight Festival 1970 (Audio CD)
This recording illustrates the importance of seeing The Who perform, rather than just listening to the recording of a show. Thankfully the film of this concert is available to buy.
This recording is scrappy compared to Live at Leeds. There is something of a myth that suggests that Live at Leeds was just a typical 'average night' performance by the band. Those that have had the opportunity to listen to the multitude of bootlegs of the period know only too well that they rarely played as well as the Leeds show. The Hull show that followed it illustrated the variability.
Roger Daltrey bemoaned that the on-stage power of The Who's music was never adequately captured on record. The power of the stage show relied on enormous volume and physical impact, along with the spectacle of the performance. It didn't matter that Townshend missed the beat (or sometimes the guitar) as he ricocheted about the place because the visuals and attitude were more important at the time. However strip things back to a recording like Live at the Isle of Wight and you hear the mistakes and sloppy playing that you wouldn't have noticed on the night.
Do yourself a favour and buy the DVD/video and understand why the playing sometimes came off the rails.
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Track comments by e-mail
Tracked by 4 customers

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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 10 May 2011 13:44:58 BDT
Bill Peter says:
You imply that the Live at Hull concert is not worth having. Is that correct? Given the cost of yet another "special edition" of Live at Leeds, that I have already shelled out for 4 times - 1 vinyl and 3 CDs - I don't feel like shelling out again if I don't have to.

In reply to an earlier post on 28 Feb 2013 10:27:18 GMT
Then don't. It's just like 'live at leeds' but not quite as good. Or maybe slightly better. It depends on your mood. But it's almost the same anyway.

Posted on 1 Jul 2014 20:16:06 BDT
I agree with the comments made.
Live at Hull is good but it would need to be studied to determine if it is any better than Leeds. I have purchased 3 versions of Leeds and do not intend to purchase Hull - although I have listened to it and can confirm it is a good recording, but unless you are a Who completest, perhaps just enjoy Leeds.

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Aug 2015 17:23:30 BDT
Last edited by the author on 14 Aug 2015 17:37:35 BDT
The Eggman says:
For one who's spent the last 45 years extolling the virtues of 'Live at Leeds' as the best live rock album ever made, 'Live at the Isle of Wight' is a revelation. True, it's scrappier than the earlier recording, but the band's brutal intensity, power and anger frequently take the breath away. The scrappiness would seem to be reflected in the occasional uncertainties of the live arrangements; I'm thinking specifically here of 'My Generation' segueing into 'Naked Eye', both of which songs betray moments of indecision. Yet despite the occasional meander, each track soon returns to its respective theme and cohesiveness. The effect is so aurally overwhelming that one need give little credence to criticisms of imprecision on the part of four musicians then cementing their status as the world's greatest live band.

This would also suggest that, had The Who played the same 15min arrangement of 'My Generation' on the island as they did in Leeds/Hull, complete with its inbuilt 'Rael', 'Tommy' and 'Naked Eye' references, we might have yet another new standard of onstage blitzkrieg: unadultered electric heaven that no other band could get near and by which all else is judged. Dare we hope there's another Who performance, between February and August 1970, that's yet to come to light? It's difficult to imagine better live rock music than you'll find on these seminal records, but if anyone could do it, The Who could. And no-one else, before or since.
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