Roger Daltrey

The Joint, Oct. 22

If the legendary Who vocalist ever was going to embark on a tour without longtime bandmate Pete Townshend, it’s only fitting that he would revisit the band’s 1969 rock opera Tommy. It was performing those songs—singing the title role of the deaf, dumb and blind boy who becomes a pinball-playing messiah—that Daltrey truly blossomed into a full-blown rock god, complete with his long blond curls and chiseled physique. Now 67, Daltrey may not be at the height of his powers, but his voice remains strong and commanding, highlighted during “Sensation” and “I’m Free.” Simon Townshend filled in more than capably for his older brother on both guitar and vocals, perfectly replicating his parts on “The Acid Queen” and “Pinball Wizard,” and serving as a great complement to Daltrey. After the Tommy closer, “We’re Not Gonna Take It,” with its timeless refrain of “Listening to you,” Daltrey shouted to the crowd, “That’s what you call a fucking classic!” But that was hardly the end of the fun. Instead, Daltrey and his five-piece band played for more than another hour, unearthing Who treasures such as “Who Are You,” “My Generation” and “Baba O’Riley,” along with an impressive medley of Johnny Cash songs—“This is for me,” Daltrey told the audience. “If you don’t like it, fuck off.” I didn’t hear anyone complaining.

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By Jarret Keene




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