Live At The Isle Of Wight Festival 1970 review by The Who

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  • Released: Oct 29, 1996
  • Sound: 10
  • Lyrics: 9
  • Overall Impression: 4
  • Reviewer's score: 7.7 Good
  • Users' score: 10 (3 votes)
The Who: Live At The Isle Of Wight Festival 1970

Sound — 10
The Who are often referred to as one of the greatest live acts of all time, and Live At The Isle Of Wight Festival 1970 displays them during their prime as live performers. Recorded after Tommy, but before the Lifehouse project fell through and Pete Townsend lost it, this is essentially a Woodstock style concert, played for thousands of stoned teenagers, this is the same concert from the Jimi Hendrix release, Blue Wild Angel. Unlike Live At Leeds, this album is much more energetic, albeit sloppy, but the missed chords and off-key vocals don't become a problem when the listener is lost in the power and energy created. Pete's got his guitar distorted to hell, Roger's voice is at it's peak, although he is off key alot, and Keith and John create one of the greatest rythm sections of all time. Play this album loud and with headphones and you will not be disapointed.

Lyrics — 9
Pete is considered a pretty good songwriter, and this album showcases his works on their studio albums. This is a 2 disc release, and it contains Tommy played from start to finish, with a few connecting tracks emmitted. it also contains some of the music from what was at the time the Lifehouse project(which would later become Who's Next). Tommy ofcourse has goodd lyrics, and new songs such as Water feature a nice metphorical theme, with water representing the essence of life, tagged with the comical line "We need water, and I know their ain't none of us here who's say no to somebody's daughter." Roger's voice has developed into the roar that is featured on Who's Next, helping to really power the performance, and when Pete sings, he always gets the job done.

Overall Impression — 4
The Who were one of the greatest live acts around, and any proof needed can be found here. This is a classic band in it's prime, playing in front of hundreds of thousands of people and kicking ass. the classics from Tommy are all done wonderfully, and the new tunes, such as Water, I Don't Even Know Myself, and Naked Eye, are all impressive. Also impressive are some of the songs overlapping with the Live at Leeds release, such as the opener Heaven And Hell, with a great solo section with both Pete and John, and an inspired Young Man Blues. As a double disc set it may be kind of expensive, but I would buy it again in a heartbeat.

3 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I had this cd in 1996, it was sweet and revealing. I was overjoyed with the sound quality, as it was recorded in 1970!. I was amazed it sounded rich as it does, considering that it was a huge wild concert. There are no festivals like woodstock and the isle of wight anymore. The isle of wight had something like 600,000 people spread across a huge field. I doubt many kids in their teens and twenties could imagine such an event. woodstock 1999 was a sociatal disaster. Back to the Cd. I would say i would rather listen to a Who performance from 1969 then 1970, to really hear the Who at their peak. But this Cd is chocked full of hard rockin bluesy performances. You also get Most of Tommy, which when played live was considerd an amazing experience.You Get rare songs designed for Lp "whos next" but were never put on it, and they are amazing. The First half of the Concert proves Just how talented The Who was, and especially the Bass player and Drummer. This cd, and the Dvd proves in its first half that Kieth Moon was an unbelievable drummer. He was musically on, as well as physicaly unmatched still to this day. Moon is in the top five percusionists of all time, and proves it here. He's just ok for the second half of the show, but still very good. I wish Pete would release the woodstock 69 performance complete. The Dvd is aslo well worth getting, sit back and let the who uleash an unbelievable tirade of sound. You will see and hear what a Guitar God is and what a Rock God is well defined. And all four of them were.