Exposé Online banner

The Who — At Kilburn 1977
(Image ID5145WQDVD, 1977/2008, 2DVD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2009-07-01

At Kilburn 1977 Cover artThese DVDs present The Who at two ends of their peak years. Disk one captures them at Gaumont State Theatre, running through a set that was intended for Jeff Stein’s 1978 documentary The Kids Are All Right. However, the band were dissatisfied with their performances and the footage was shelved, until now. The main difference between this show and the one that ended up in the final documentary is a tangible sense that The Who, Pete Townshend especially, just weren’t clicking. Sure, a band this well-oiled and experienced could generate white hot rock in their sleep, but here they just aren’t on the same page with Townshend noticeably missing cues and even getting pissed off at the audience. Still, even on an off day a matter of months before Keith Moon’s death The Who could still rock harder than most other rock bands on the planet. Witness the sound and fury of “My Generation” for proof. The other end of the band’s history is presented on the second disk. Here is The Who in 1969 performing at a venue normally booked for classical engagements, part of the strategy to promote the Tommy album as more than a mere rock record. But the band on stage are very much a rock band, charging through classics like “Young Man Blues,” “Shakin’ All Over,” and “Summertime Blues” — similar to the performances captured on Live at Leeds nine months later. The film is unfortunately dark and grainy, with portions of Tommy being left out of the main feature due to technical issues (though the entire show can be viewed via the special features.) But whether or not the flaws are a result of the cameramen or the band themselves, fans will really enjoy seeing The Who in action. Their kind will not be seen again.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 37, 2008 releases, 1977 recordings

Related artist(s): The Who

Latest news

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more

2020-01-15
Carlos Alvarado RIP – Carlos Alvarado, pioneering composer, multi-instrumentalist and pioneer of progressive rock and electronic experimental music in Mexico, passed away January 14th, 2020 at age 68 after a two year battle with cancer.  » Read more

2020-01-12
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more

2020-01-12
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Pink Filth - Seventeen Bubblegum Smashes! – Um. This is not Pink Floyd, it is Pink Filth. The name is not only a clever pun to fool high school stoners into buying the album (if they could find it in any store on this planet) but it also is a...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues