Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Who - The Who Sell Out

Psychedelic album released in 1967. First song, Armenia, City in the Sky sounds like Davy Jones on helium while Sgt. Peppers plays backwards it the background. Better than "By Her Majesties Satanic Request", but this is no Sgt. Peppers. A concept album, but trying to work that concept in makes things really disjointed. (Actually, after the first couple songs thing really start to flow). There's a few different styles of songs along with the jingles and commercials. It makes for more confusion than concept. The songwriting leans a bit more towards The Kinks than any other band from this era. You can hear Pink Floyd and even Beach Boys influences by the time it's all over. It all sounds distinctively like The Who though. All with a sense of humor, make that an English Monty Python type humor. The production is paper thin on this thing. I think that leads people to dismiss it. If George Martin had produced this I think it would be much more highly regarded.
Not the place to start, but I Can See For Miles may be my favorite Who song. They spent more time getting the sound of that one just right. I wish they spent more time getting the whole album to sound just right. The production really hurts some of these songs.
Awesome melodies.
Some of the very best examples of psychedelic pop music.

Fun Facts: There is a 1995 re issue of this with 10 more songs and jingles. The "third side". It's more of the same and is pretty cool. In 2009 there was a Deluxe Edition released. There's about five more tracks plus a second CD that has the original Mono mix including the "third side". With the addition of all the bonus tracks I prefer this over Who's Next.

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