on 6 September 2011
Firstly, the negatives.
This is the CD version of the original American issue of the album, which means the tracklist differs from the original and superior UK album in a number of ways. I'm A Man has been removed. The Kids Are Alright is the 7" single version with its noisy middle section edited out. Circles, actually recorded a few months after the release of the album, has been tagged onto the end and has a noticeably rougher sound quality than the rest of the material.
The CD was originally released as a budget-price seller by MCA, which is reflected in the low quality artwork.
Now, the positives.
This CD uses the original 1965 mono mix of the album, not the recently invented stereo remix.
There's a low-end warmth to this disc which is lacking with the more recent CD issues (the Deluxe stereo edition and the remastered Japanese mono edition). I also find I can play it at far higher volumes than the aforementioned without suffering any harshness to the ears.
So even if you already own the modern Deluxe stereo remaster it IS worth considering buying this version, because it's a different listening experience.
And, the music?
In brief, its turbo-charged London Mod R&B. But this is not an album full of clones of the ferocious title track. It is at times more interesting - and subtle - than that. Powerchord explosions and bursts of Pop-Art noise crop up at the most unexpected moments.
It's certainly an album which on a cursory initial inspection may leave the uninitiated feeling somewhat disappointed that it doesn't feature more songs like the title track, or in the style of the band's early singles, I Can't Explain or Anyway Anyhow Anywhere. But it's also an album which can pay *great* dividends if one takes the time to give it a chance and actually *listen* to what's going on.
One slight annoyance is the added piano player, a session musician brought in by Producer Shel Talmy. Although he doesn't feature on every track his tinkling does at times detract slightly from the aggressive nature of the music.
So to sum up, I'm giving 4 stars out of 5 to "The Who Sings My Generation".
PS: A quick warning. When this title was very first released on CD in the 1980s it was processed in horrible fake stereo. That mistake was rectified with subsequent pressings. If you're buying a 1990's pressing you should be perfectly fine, but if you get a really early copy that sounds a bit odd, that's probably why.
on 30 November 2001
The Who's first album is so fantastic, it's hard to understand why it should be available on import only so that many fans do not get to hear the boys in the beginning. Right from the kick off of "Out in the street", this album shows its vigour and exuberance.
It's a pity that the original "Kids" is only available on the big box set - it had an extended guitar solo. Same goes for "I'm a man", but at least "Circles" (which I've never heard - I have the original UK issue of this album) is not easily available, so maybe this US issue is not such a misshapen effort as other US albums by UK bands.
"La la la lies" is tuneful, "The ox", an instrumental, shows Keith at his best, and "It's not true", in which Roger denies various vicious rumours about "himself" is just hilarious ("I haven't got eleven kids, I weren't born in Baghdad. I'm not half Chinese either and I didn't kill my dad"), and ends with a My generationesque defiant "so there!".
If you love The Who's early singles ("Can't explain", "Anyway, anyhow, anywhere", "My generation"), I expect you'll love this, and you'll find on this album some of the songs that appear in such tantalising snatches in the background of the Quadrophenia album.
This is a must for a mods and Who fans, even the not so serious ones. The Who rock!
on 17 February 2001
This is a great recording. From "Out In The Street" to "Instant Party" you will be treated to the classic Who tracks that started it all. The best part is, this album has not gotten the remix treatment that in many ways ruined "A Quick One" and "Sell Out". You will get to hear them the way they sounded back in 1965. (Except for the fact that these tracks are in stereo.) Many of these songs contain elements that can be heard in much of today's Alternative Rock. (Just listen to "The Ox".) Over all, I'd say this is an excellent addition to any collection of Who CD's. Though I would like to see a CD release of the original version of "My Generation" which includes a longer version of "The Kids Are Alright" and the classic Blues track "I'm A Man".
on 12 February 2001
BEING THE FIRST ALBUM BY THE WHO IT IS VERY GOOD,AND BEING THE AMERICAN RELEASE ,IT GETS A DIFFERANT SLEEVE THAT ADDS TO THE DISCS APPEAL,AND ALSO UNLIKE THE ORIGINAL RELEASE ON VINAL IT IS A STEREO MIX. UNLIKE THE BRIT VERSION WHICH HAS IM A MAN,IS REPLACED BY INSTANT PARTY(BETTER KNOWN TO WHO FANS AS CIRCLES) DUE TO MANY UNAGREEABLE DESPUTES BETWEEN BRUNSWICK RECORDS AND SHEL TALMY,THE ALBUM PRODUCER,THE BRITISH VERSION HAS NOT BEEN RELEASED OFFICIALLY WHICH IS A BIG SHAME AS THERE IS SOMTHING COOL ABOUT AN OLD MONO RELEASE. BUT AS AN ALBUM IT IS THE ONE AND ONLY CHANCE TO HEAR THE WHO AS A R AND B/ MOD GROUP. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED MARTIN THE WHO FAN