Rocks In The Attic #235: The Who – ‘The Who Sell Out’ (1967)

RITA#235A well-intentioned satire on commercialism and consumerism, or a rare mis-step by The Who in an otherwise flawless run of albums leading up to their first masterpiece, Tommy?

This album isn’t without its highlights, and the cover is fantastic, but I do think that for all its good intentions, it’s a step backwards after A Quick One. The final song on that album, A Quick One, While He’s Away, points towards the direction Townshend would go with Tommy and Quadrophenia, but The Who Sells Out tries to do something else. It is a concept album – well, it’s more of a concept album than Sgt. Pepper’s (released a few months earlier), in that most of the album deals with the subject of advertising, but the songs just aren’t as good as they are on those two later albums.

I do like the ultra-compressed effect they use on the radio announcements between songs (making use of a device called the Sonovox), and I’m sure Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter would appreciate this too – a similar effect is employed on Daft Punk’s Homework debut.

Hit: I Can See For Miles

Hidden Gem: Armenia City In The Sky

2 thoughts on “Rocks In The Attic #235: The Who – ‘The Who Sell Out’ (1967)

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