This release from the Eat A Peach folks is their first showcasing one of Rock’s most legendary acts, and one of the most explosive live band’s period, The Who. This new set focuses on the group’s short month long tour in the autumn of 1972. We here are the CMR site are familiar with this tour via the excellent Brussels 1972 (BEL 160872 A/B) concert. In his assessment of that title, GS states that it was one of the best recordings from the tour, thankfully there were a couple more and the subjects of this new title. The Who would play 16 concerts from August 11 through September 14, 1972, here we get both concerts performed in the city of Copenhagen, Denmark at the famed K.B. Hallen, both appearing for the first time in a silver format.
K.B. Hallen, Copenhagen, Denmark – August 21, 1972
Disc 1 (56:09) I Can’t Explain, Summertime Blues, My Wife, Baba O’Riley, Behind Blue Eyes, Bargain, Won’t Get Fooled Again, Magic Bus, Relay
Disc 2 (29:19) Pinball Wizard, See Me Feel Me, My Generation, Naked Eye, Sparks
The first night at K.B. Hallen, the audience recording is very good, clear and atmospheric with all instruments and vocals being clear in the mix, Pete Townshend’s guitar is prominent so one can surmise the taper was very close to the stage directly in front of Pete’s amplifier. Since the guitar is in the forefront, the overall effect of the sound is somewhat lessened since we do not get enough of “The Ox”. Nevertheless this is a great atmospheric recording that sounds great loud, much to the chagrin of my family. It should be noted there has been a previous release of this concert in incomplete form as Danish Treat (Substitute Recordings PMA-2026) and is a CD-R.
The recording begins just seconds before Pete breaks the air with the opening power chordage of I Can’t Explain and is followed quickly by Summertime Blues, the latter features Pete being harassed by his equipment, something that continues into My Wife, the band dutifully carries on and it takes him the first half of the song to do so, he gets his anger out with a great solo. There is some amp squealing as Roger tells the audience that Keith Moon is not featured on Behind Blues Eyes, a misnomer as Moon is certainly a part of the song, with the equipment issues behind them, the band really start hitting their stride.
A nice chunk of Who’s Next is still in the live set, I agree with GS, the band really play Bargain great live and they get a bit of improv jamming in the very solid rendition of the song. Quite interesting to hear the band just bang out these classics while the subdued audience clap politely, they are very quiet and well mannered although the excellent 10 minute version of Magic Bus seems to awaken them! The band continue to hammer them out with a brilliant version of See Me Feel Me that really gets the crowd into it, they are cheering and clapping for more and the band goes for the jugular with My Generation. The quality dips a bit for Naked Eye and Sparks, sounds more distant and muddy, perhaps even from another recorder? Nonetheless, a really fine concert.
K.B. Hallen, Copenhagen, Denmark – August 25, 1972
Disc 2 (26:35) I Can’t Explain, Summertime Blues, My Wife, Baba O’Riley, Behind Blue Eyes
Disc 3 (68:46) Bargain, Won’t Get Fooled Again, Magic Bus, Relay, Pinball Wizard, See Me Feel Me, My Generation, However Much I Booze, Naked Eye, Long Live Rock
This concert was originally scheduled for August 22 but for unknown reasons it was moved or postponed until the 25th. The audience source used here is very good, the music is clear with instruments and vocals easily discernable with a bit of top end distortion, there is a thick, harsh hiss at the beginning of the recording that lasts for the first two songs but gets better during My Wife and after that clears the sound is quite powerful. Once the sound smoothes out this concert exceeds the previous one, the recording is more centered and picks up the electrifying atmosphere inside the hall, the audience is primed for the band…Who deliver in spades.
Pete seems in a mischievous mood, he more or less takes over the song introductions with various comments, there are shenanigans going on as the band readies to play Behind Blue Eyes, Roger says Keith will be playing and Pete interrupts and makes a few jokes at Moon before announcing they can get into some “serious music”. Besides the excellent and inspired playing, this concert has a couple standout tracks, the aforementioned Behind Blue Eyes, a dynamic Won’t Get Fooled Again where it sounds like Roger’s scream obliterates the recording device’s mic and a great My Generation with a rare, early version of the The Who By Numbers song No Way Out aka However Much I Booze. It begins with the band sort of jamming and you think maybe they will go into Shakin’ All Over but it slowly starts to work its way into the riff, albeit chunkier with more of a harder edge then Pete starts some of the lyrics, a very rough embryonic but really interesting version of the song that then segues into Naked Eye…improvisation lives! A blistering version of the as of yet unreleased Long Live Rock leaves the audience clambering for more…and finishes this most satisfying concert.
The packaging is what we have come to expect from the Peach folks, mini LP sleeve with each CD in its own individual sleeve with track listings with the whole set being wonderfully adorned with mostly live shots of the group in action. There is a fold open insert with a year long synopsis on the band’s activities for 1972 by The Rover. Great packaging and content make for a great release, Who fans will certainly want to grab this up.