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4.8 out of 5 stars
57
4.8 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 22 March 2016
The first and best Who compilation originally released on vinyl in the early '70s. Collects their best singles from the '60s and doesn't dilute them with hits from the '70s, which to this reviewer never had the visceral impact of their first decade. I prefer the art pop R&B phase over the arena rock FM years. I also like the mastering on this old CD (1990 MCA), which isn't concerned with artifical loudness. The mix of mono and stereo tracks may dismay modern listeners, but I grew up with the material as such and am not put out.
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on 9 May 2017
bought it to add to my who collection i already have it in vinyl but it has so many good songs i couldnt resist buying it
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on 3 March 2017
Love this CD. Great find. Would highly recommend.
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on 9 July 2017
The songs brought back a lot of great memories...
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on 11 May 2017
One of the firsat albums I ever bought
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on 9 January 2016
Excellent vinyl,fast delivery
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on 2 May 2017
Usual brilliant music from The Who.
My dad had this on vinyl 30 odd years ago. Nice to hear it again.
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on 7 December 2016
Husband asked for this as an Xmas present as had had this when he was younger
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on 12 March 2017
Amazing album. Nostalgic!!!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 1 August 2012
This 1971 singles compilation by The Who presents an outstanding snapshot of the (early) music made by this great band. Released at around the same time as their album Who's Next which, together with its successor album Quadrophenia, constituted, for me, the band's creative peak, this collection demonstrates in abundance what a great singles band Pete Townshend's boys really were. OK, much (indeed, all) of this material has reappeared on the later plethora of Who compilations, but the thing I find particularly appealing about Meaty Beaty Big And Bouncy is that it is not 'contaminated' by some of the band's later, weaker material - here we have 13 essential singles (OK, with a slight fluctuation in quality) plus John Entwhistle's quirky curiosity, Boris The Spider (taken from the A Quick One album). Of course, the other plus point about this album is the cover, which contains two photos (originally appearing on the front and back of the old vinyl album cover) - one with the band members looking out of a run-down tenement window at four boys (urchins, maybe) staring at the camera, and no doubt symbolically representing the band members in their youth, whilst the second photo has the positions of the boys/band members reversed. These photos capture the sound and spirit of the band (and the times) brilliantly.

Of course, the music should be familiar to us all. Along with the Kinks, my favourite singles band from this era. There is some variation in the standard of Townshend's songs from this period, but still not a duff track, just a series of short, punchy, hook-laden gems, featuring (incidentally) the greatest drummer and bass player in rock music (although Entwhistle's playing is frequently relegated more to the background in much of this early material). OK, Townshend was not one of the world's greatest lyricists (albeit his lyrics did become more poetic and sophisticated over time) but his tales of youth rebellion and disaffection, unrequited love, teenage fandom, madness, divorce (re. A Legal Matter has some great lines), etc, still speak for successive generations of youth. For me, standout songs here include the vibrant teen anthems My Generation, The Kids Are Alright and the much underrated Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere (Townshend's falsetto vocal included). Similarly, the opening chords of Substitute (including Entwhistle's rolling bass line) never fail to amaze me, whilst probably my favourite of all (and, again, another rather underrated song, I feel) is the wonderful ode to idolatry, Pictures Of Lily, which showcases Moon's talent and demonstrates in Townshend's riffing Rickenbacker where Paul Weller's sound came from 10 years later.

A magnificent blast from the past.
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