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The Who - Pete Townshend Albums:

Psychoderelict - UK - 1993 Atlantic CD

CD made in Germany for export to UK

Psychoderelict - UK - 1993 Atlantic Cassette (Promo)

Advance Listening Copy

Psychoderelict - USA - 1993 Atlantic CD

Psychoderelict - USA - 1993 Atlantic CD

Pete Townshend autographed

Psychoderlict - USA - 1993 Atlantic CD

Music Only Version

Psychoderlict - USA - 1993 Atlantic Cassette

Music Only Version

Psychoderelict - USA - 1993 Atlantic CD (Promo)

2 CD set: 1 CD censored dialogue, 1 CD no dialogue

Psychoderelict - USA - 1993 Atlantic Cassette (Promo)

Psychoderelict - USA - 1993 Atlantic Cassette (Promo)

Psychoderelict - USA - 1993 Atlantic Cassette (Promo)

Psychoderelict - USA - 2006 Hip-O CD

Remastered with bonus track

Psychoderelict - Canada - 1993 Atlantic CD

Columbia House Record Club Edition

Psychoderelict - France - 1993 Atlantic CD

Dialogue in booklet transcribed in French. CD made in Germany

Psychoderelict - France - 1993 Atlantic Cassette (Promo)

Psychoderelict - Germany - 1993 Atlantic CD

Dialogue in booklet transcribed in German

Psychoderelict - Germany - 1993 Atlantic Cassette

Psychoderelict - Germany - 1993 Atlantic CD (Promo)

2 CD set: 1 CD censored dialogue, 1 CD no dialogue

Psychoderelict - Germany - 1993 Atlantic CD

Music Only Version

Psychoderelict - Germany - 2006 SPV CD

2 CD set in digipack with Dialogue version, Music Only version and bonus tracks

Psychoderelict - Indonesia - 1993 Atlantic Cassette

Psychoderelict - Japan - 1993 Atlantic CD

Psychoderelict - Japan - 2006 Imperial CD

Mini-LP cover

Psychoderelict - Spain - 1993 Atlantic CD (Promo)

2 CD set: 1 CD censored dialogue, 1 CD no dialogue

Psychoderelict - Taiwan - 1993 Atlantic CD

Disc made in Germany

Psychoderelict - Thailand - 1993 Atlantic Cassette

Interview With A Pschoderelict - USA - 1993 Atlantic CD (Promo)

Music and Interview

Pete Townshend Live - 1993 Polygram CDi (Promo)

Live tracks from the Brooklyn Academy of Music show. Playable on CD

Pete Townshend Story - USA - 1993 Unistar CD (Promo)

Music And Interview

Coolwalking... (Best Of Pete Townshend) - UK - 1996 Atlantic Cassette (Promo)

Music & interview

Coolwalking... (Best Of Pete Townshend) - USA - 1996 Atlantic CD

Same cover as Germany & Canada - Atlantic CD

Coolwalking... (Best Of Pete Townshend) - USA - 1996 Atlantic CD (Promo)

Music & interview

Coolwalking... (Best Of Pete Townshend) - USA - 1996 Atlantic Cassette

Coolwalking... (Best Of Pete Townshend) - USA - 1996 Atlantic Cassette (Promo)

Coolwalking... (Best Of Pete Townshend) - Australia - 1996 Atlantic CD

Coolwalking... (Best Of Pete Townshend) - Indonesia - 1996 Atlantic Cassette (Promo)

Coolwalking... (Best Of Pete Townshend) - Japan - 1996 East/West CD

Coolwalking... (Best Of Pete Townshend) - Taiwan - 1996 Atlantic CD

Pete Townshend - USA - 1998 Windswept Pacific CD Set (Promo)

Comes with custom book and 3 CDs of Pete solo and Who music

Pete Townshend Live: A Benefit for Maryville Academy - UK 1999 CD (Test Pressing)

Pete Townshend Live: A Benefit for Maryville Academy - USA - 1999 Platinum CD

Lifehouse - UK - 1999 BBC Cassette Box Set

2 cassette "Lifehouse" play. (Subsequently included in 2000 Eel Pie CD Box set)

Lifehouse Chronicles Box Set - UK - 2000 Eel Pie CD (outside slip case cover)

Lifehouse Box Set - UK - 2000 Eel Pie CD (inside box cover)

Lifehouse Elements - UK - 2000 Wagram CD

Lifehouse Elements - USA - 2000 Redline CD

Lifehouse Elements - USA - 2000 Redline CD (Promo)

Pete Townshend Sampler - USA - 2000 Windswept Pacific CD Set (Promo)

2CD test pressing (assumed 2000 release, may be newer)

PSYCHODERELICT

Album: Psychoderelict, Psychoderelict - Music Only

LPs (vinyl) Sampled: Not released on LP

CDs Sampled: Atlantic (USA), Atlantic (Germany), Atlantic (Japan), Imperial (Japan), Hip-O (USA)

Non-album Tracks: "Psychomontage" (found on the UK CD single of "English Boy Part 1), "Flame" (the Simon Townshend demo, found on the UK CD single of "English Boy Part 2"), "Early Morning Dreams" (demo version, found on the UK CD single of "English Boy Part 2" or the German CD single of "English Boy"), "Electronic Wizardry" (demo found on the German CD single of "English Boy"), "Uneasy Street" (an unreleased track that found its way onto "The Best Of Pete Townshend: Coolwalking ... ")

CD Comments: The USA and German CDs sound identical - Excellent. The Atlantic (Japan) CD has slightly extra bass, which is unnecessary. The Imperial (Japan) CD's vocals are a bit brighter than the vocals on the other CD version. The bonus tracks are louder than the rest of the CD. The bonus tracks on the Imperial (Japan) CD are available on other CDs available from www.eelpie.com The Hip-O (USA) sounds similar to the Imperial (Japan) CD - not quite as good as the previously released versions.

Summary: A slight edge to the Atlantic USA and German CDs over the Atlantic (Japan) and much larger edge over the Japan (Imperial) CD.

Other Comments: "Psychoderelict" was originally to be released in 1991. However, Pete Townshend had a bicycle accident and injured himself, whereas he was unable to play guitar. In 1993, he made a bold move and reworked the album with dialog mixed in with the songs, creating a sort of theatrical play. The results were absolutely brilliant, but unfortunately, the concept didn't take to well commercially. After slow sales, the "Music Only" version was released and sold along side of the dialog version. Besides deleting the dialog, the content of the "Music Only" version is nearly identical, except that "Predictable" has an extra verse.

Notes: The 1993 Atlantic Germany CD version has the dialogue printed in German in the insert.

The 2006 Hip-O (USA) and SPV (Germany) CDs contain "Psychomontage" as a bonus track. This song was previously available only on one of the two 1993 "English Boy" UK CD singles.

The 2006 SPV (Germany) 2CD set contains additional bonus tracks (track listing below) found only on this CD.
"English Boy" (long intro). Not only a long intro, but with some very unique vocal performance differences.
"Uneasy Street". Same version as on the 1996 "Cool Walking" CD (below).
"There Is No Message In A Broken Heart". A "finished" version of the demo available on Scoop 3.

A live performance of "Psychoderelict" can be seen on the "Pete Townshend - Live" video (see VIDEO section).

About: Psychoderelic
 
I recall hearing about the new Pete album featuring "dialogue" and thinking to myself "what the fuck has he come up with now???"
 
About 2 weeks before the album was released I got the promo CD single of "English Boy" at a local record show.
 
When I played it - I really loved the music but was uncomfortable with the dialogue.
 
Shortly thereafter, the album was out, bought it immediately and played it over and over. Initially I still thought "what the <Riker>" but then it really started to grow on me. When the non-dialogue versions became available - other than a song version variation here and there - I didn't enjoy it as much as the dialogue version.
 
When Pete brought his live show to NY my friend Bryan and I went to see it. Wow! Unfortunately the BAAM show that was broadcast and released featured Pete with almost no voice due to staying up all night and doing a full dress rehearsal before the real show (oops).
 
There are also the various
CD singles that have a few outtakes and demos which didn't make it to the album...
 
All of the songs on this album are outstanding. My favorites include... English Boy, Don't Try To Make Me Real, Outlive The Dinosaur, etc.
 
I played the <Picard> out of one version or another of this album for years and years on a regular basis. With some tweaking and the Who treatment - this could have been another "Quadrophenia". Unfortunately, Pete lost money on the tour and the album wasn't a hit. A masterpiece and Pete's solo efforts now gone...

Track Listings:

Dialogue version: English Boy, Meher Baba M3, Let's Get Pretentious, Meher Baba M4 (Signal Box), Early Morning Dreams, I Want That Thing, Dialogue Introduction to "Outlive the Dinosaur", Outlive the Dinosaur, Flame [demo version], Now and Then, I Am Afraid, Don't Try to Make Me Real, Dialogue, Introduction to "Predictable", Predictable, Flame, Meher Baba M5 (Vivaldi), Fake It, Dialogue Introduction to "Now and Then", Now and Then (Reprise), Baba O'Riley [demo version], English Boy (Reprise)

Music Only version: English Boy, Meher Baba M3, Let's Get Pretentious, Meher Baba M4 (Signal Box), Early Morning Dreams, I Want That Thing, Outlive The Dinosaur, Now And Then, I Am Afraid, Don't Try To Make Me Real, Predictable, Flame, Meher Baba M5 (Vivaldi), Fake It, English Boy (Reprise)

2006 - Imperial Japan: English Boy, Meher Baba M3, Let's Get Pretentious, Meher Baba M4 (Signal Box), Early Morning Dreams, I Want That Thing, Outlive The Dinosaur, Now And Then, I Am Afraid, Don't Try To Make Me Real, Predictable, Flame, Meher Baba M5 (Vivaldi), Fake It, English Boy (Reprise), Now And Then (live The Empire, 1998), English Boy (live Fillmore West, 1996)

2006 - Hip-O USA: English Boy, Meher Baba M3, Let's Get Pretentious, Meher Baba M4 (Signal Box), Early Morning Dreams, I Want That Thing, Outlive The Dinosaur, Now And Then, I Am Afraid, Don't Try To Make Me Real, Predictable, Flame, Meher Baba M5 (Vivaldi), Fake It, English Boy (Reprise), Psychomontage

2006 - SPV Germany:

CD1 with Dialogue:
English Boy, Meher Baba M3, Let's Get Pretentious, Meher Baba M4 (Signal Box), Early Morning Dreams, I Want That Thing, Outlive The Dinosaur, Now And Then, I Am Afraid, Don't Try To Make Me Real, Predictable, Flame, Meher Baba M5 (Vivaldi), Fake It, English Boy (Reprise), Psychomontage

CD2 Music Only version: English Boy, Meher Baba M3, Let's Get Pretentious, Meher Baba M4 (Signal Box), Early Morning Dreams, I Want That Thing, Outlive The Dinosaur, Now And Then, I Am Afraid, Don't Try To Make Me Real, Predictable, Flame, Meher Baba M5 (Vivaldi), Fake It, English Boy (Reprise), English Boy (long intro), Early Morning Dreams (demo), Uneasy Street, There Is No Message In A Broken Heart

THE BEST OF PETE TOWNSHEND (Coolwalkingsmoothtalkingstraightsmokingfirestoking)

Album: The Best of Pete Townshend

CDs Sampled: Atlantic (USA), Atlantic (Germany)

CD Comments: Both of the <above> CDs sound identical.

Other Comments: The tracks on this CD have been remixed and remastered, so this album is actually more than just a compilation piece.

About: "Coolwalkingsmoothtalkingstraightsmokingfirestoking" (The Best Of Pete Townshend)

(I'll refer to it as "Coolwalking")

It's funny how times change folks...

When this CD came out in 1996, I listened to it probably once... Why?

The very first track, "Rough Boys" is overly bright and doesn't match the deep quality of the rest of the CD.

Rather than copy the rest of the CD to a CDr and have an otherwise great CD, because of its "imperfection", it became "tainted" and thus discarded...

What's different about this CD (vs. any other "best of") is that the tracks are remixed.

I really liked what I heard. The "demos" (from
Who Came First) have some added nuances which were brought out. The harmonica in "Misunderstood" (such a great song!) sounds like Peter Hope-Evans is right in the room playing it for you. I always said that White City is in desperate need of a remix (if only the rest of the album sounded as good as the extended version of "Hiding Out") and here it is - "Give Blood" and "Face The Face" never sounded better! Wow!

I remember being excited that "Uneasy Street" (a leftover track from "Psychoderelict") was being released, but I still feel the same way about it today as I did then... I'm glad Pete left it off of the album. It's a good song, but doesn't fit "Psychoderelict". I'm not quite sure how it would have fit in terms of the story line...

I really like the "E.Cola Mix" of "Let My Love Open The Door". I recall recording the "live version" off of TV (Pete was doing some sort of awards ceremony). Great variation - makes the bass speakers on my exercise room speakers go wild. :)

The rest of the
Empty Glass tracks sound great. Much improved with deeper definition - very noticeably around the drums. Love it. If you are as big a fan of "A Little Is Enough" as I am - you will just love this...

I would have to listen to it more to get into the specifics of the changes with the
Chinese Eyes and "Psychoderelict" tracks. It's much easier to notice "big" changes (i.e. something that didn't sound 100% before and now sounds like 200%) than changes which might be "different", but not immediately perceived...

I wish "Rough Boys" worked out better, but...

I think this cover art might be the first of the "cut off top-of-the-head" look for Pete. His book cover also features that "special effect"...

Track Listing: Rough Boys, Let My Love Open The Door, Misunderstood, Give Blood, A Friend Is A Friend, Sheraton Gibson, English Boy, Street In The City, Pure And Easy, Slit Skirts, The Sea Refuses No River, A Little Is Enough, Face The Face, Uneasy Street, Let My Love Open The Door (E.Cola Mix)

PETE TOWNSHEND

Album: Pete Townshend

CDs Sampled: Windswept Pacific - 3 CD set (only one version available)

CD Comments: Excellent sound quality. The majority of this material is sourced directly from the pre-1998 remixed and remastered catalogue of The Who and Pete Townshend.

Other Comments: This is a promo only release. The purpose of this release was to market The Who and Pete Townshend (solo) music to be used for movie soundtracks and commercials. The book is of very nice quality with heavy paper stock and nice pictures.

The CD jackets themselves list the tracks by original release date, track title and available source (album and USA record label). However, the "Who Came First" and "Empty Glass" tracks are incorrectly credited to MCA (versus Ryko and/or Atco/Atlantic).

Note: Rumor is that there are also a few of these with "Townshend" spelled, "Townsend" on the cover.

Track Listing: Call Me Lightning (Who), Pinball Wizard (Who), We're Not Going To Take It (Who), Baba O'Riley (Who), Bargain (Who), Going Mobile (Who), Won't Get Fooled Again (Who), Behind Blue Eyes (Who), Sheraton Gibson, Pure and Easy, Join Together (Who), The Real Me (Who), 5:15 (Who), Love Reign O'er Me (Who), Slip Kid (Who), Squeeze Box (Who), Dreaming From the Waist (Who), Keep Me Turning, Misunderstood, Street in the City, Sister Disco (Who), Who Are You (Who), Rough Boys, Let My Love Open the Door, A Little is Enough, You Better You Bet (Who), Another Tricky Day (Who), Athena (Who), Eminence Front (Who), Slit Skirts, Face Dances Part 2, The Sea Refuses No River, Brilliant Blues, Second Hand Love, Give Blood, Face the Face, After the Fire, A Friend is a Friend, I Won't Run Any More, All Shall Be Well, Now And Then, English Boy, Predictable

PETE TOWNSHEND LIVE: A Benefit for Maryville Academy

Album: Pete Townshend Live: A Benefit for Maryville Academy

CDs Sampled: Platinum (USA), Platinum (Canada)

CD Comments: Both versions sound great.

Other Comments: I'm not a big fan of this CD. After having seen Pete's shows 2 years prior at The Supper Club in NYC, I was disappointed to hear his new arrangements (and drum machine) at the Boston show, which was the first part of this USA mini-tour, which included, Boston, Woodstock (NY) and Chicago.

Note: Reissued as: "Magic Bus - Live from Chicago" in 2004 with edited track list.

About: Pete Townshend Live: A Benefit for Maryville Academy

A friend recently starting asking me about 1998 Pete Townshend concerts and I basically felt that was a "sore subject".

Why?

Let's roll back the tape to 1996. That was the year of The Fillmore West and The Supper Club solo Pete shows. Absolutely breathtaking, fantastic concerts. If you are a Pete Townshend fan and went to one (or more) of these shows, there was only one word to describe them... WOW!

Fast forward 2 years...


1998

Rather than Pete and John Carin only (as in 1996), Pete put together a band for a few performances in Boston, NY (a return to Woodstock) and Chicago (where this CD was recorded). Instead of using a drummer, Pete went with a drum machine and the incomparable,
Jody Linscott.

At first I raised an eyebrow as the "no drummer" rumors surfaced, but I had enough trust in Pete to "know what he was doing" and would figure it out. After all, "Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting" and parts of "Psychoderelict" are recorded with a drum machine. So... why not?

When tickets went on sale, I had the opportunity to get decent seats for the Boston show. I had never been to Boston before and all I've heard my entire life how "wonderful" Boston was. So why not?

I think it took about 4.5 to 5 hours to get to Boston. I had a nice Laguna Green BMW convertible, with a great (for the time period) car stereo and it was a decent ride North.

The venue was
Harbor Lights, which was set on the waterfront. Who and Pete fans started to gather there and if you think the Boston accent is just in the movies or on TV, you are wrong. It seemed as if every was auditioning for the movie, Good Will Hunting. Was I actually in "Boss-ton" or in "Baas-tin" ? :)

It was nice to run into old friends who traveled from far places as well as to meet folks who I had met on-line but never met in person before. The pre-show was a lot of fun!

However, my happiness and excitement, quickly changed when the band began to play. I hated it. The changed arraignments made me feel "uncomfortable". I had loved what Roger Daltrey did with "Daltrey Sings Townshend" - but this just "didn't feel right" to me. By the time "Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere" starting playing, I "had enough". So rather than leave, I ended up taking a nap!

Almost 15 years later, it's easy to laugh at this situation, but imagine me, my love for Pete, The Who, etc. - falling asleep at one of Pete's concerts - a concert I drove ~5 hours to get to! That's pretty damn funny. What's even funnier, was that I was awoken by a roll of
toilet paper that someone tossed at my head! (Who brings a roll of toilet paper to a concert???) When I suddenly woke up, my wife said, "you were sleeping!" and I was like, yeah, let me go back to sleep and wake me up when it's over!

So, for all these years, I've had a "bad feeling" about this mini-tour (and it's UK counterpart), which followed several months later.

Years ago, someone sent me a soundboard of the Woodstock show from a satellite feed. I remember accepting it reluctantly - thinking I would never listen to it based on my experience
. I may have listened to it once, and it only reinforced my feelings of the concert I so much disliked!

To make matters worse, the next day we "toured" Boston. Other than the "oasis" near Harvard, I thought that Boston was a smaller version of Philadelphia (or St. Louis) - another "once upon a time" great American city, now burnt out and desolate. I couldn't imagine why anyone would want to ever go there! (Years later, I flew to Boston to buy a 911 and while driving it home, discovered some of the suburbs of Boston which were "pure New England" and beautiful - perhaps this was the "Boston" that people were so fond of? I ended up hating the car and sold it a week later... )

So where does this leave this poor CD today?

It's interesting what 15 years and some grey hair can do to a person...

As the album opened with Pete's version of Canned Heat's "On The Road Again", I thought... hMMM... this isn't bad...

But, when "Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere" (the next song) played, I felt like... "no
way!" What I realize now what I disliked so much about this is, it's Pete basically singing the lyrics to a *different song*.

"Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere" is one of my favorite songs, and I can even argue it's one of my "life's theme". I have no objection to "different" (i.e. I really like the rap singer in the middle of "Who Are You"), but this just sounds
completely "wrong".

Rather than dwell on it, I hit "next" and found a very nice rendition of "A Little Is Enough".

While most of what I wrote above seemingly has nothing to do with this CD, what it does have to do with is my "emotional" response to this CD - the "why" I didn't previously care for it and the things about it which I was "stuck on". I think its important to "frame" the reasons and the thinking about something - especially when you say "you don't like it". "WHY don't you like it?" This helps the reader (you people) understand the reasons. You may or may not agree with them ("each to their own sewage") but at least you know what the objections are and can then draw your own conclusion's accordingly.

So, basically, other than some "tainted tracks" (i.e. "Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere" and "Won't Get Fooled Again") this is actually a pretty good CD. Once I've allowed myself to "get past" the parts I don't like, I can then like the parts I do like and put the whole CD in the right perspective. Perhaps that's called "maturity".
 but... Who knows...

I'm going to have to listen to some more of the music from this mini-tour to see what I really like and don't like from it. I suppose I'm spoiled by Pete for having so much quality from "beginning to end" (of every album or performance), that when he throws me a "curve ball", I end up "striking out".

Other than some extra compression, this CD sounds pretty good...

Track Listing: On The Road Again, Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere, A Little Is Enough, Drowned, You Better You Bet, Now And Then, North Country Girl, Let My Love Open The Door, Won't Get Fooled Again, Magic Bus, I'm One, Magic Bus, Heart To Hang Onto

THE LIFEHOUSE CHRONICLES

Album: The Lifehouse Chronicles

CDs Sampled: This CD (set) is only available through www.eelpie.com

CD Comments: This is a great collection of music, which is unfortunately clouded by mastering which causes the sound to be too bright and harsh. (Compare the "Lifehouse" tracks on the "Who Came First" CD to see what this album could have sounded like.)

Other Comments: I would like to see this album set remastered.

About: The Lifehouse Chronicles
 
"Lifehouse" is like the "one that got away" for Pete.
 
Tons of effort, great ideas, brilliant songs and concepts, but in listening to what he had to say in "Who I Am" - nobody seemed to "get it".
 
The more Pete explained it to folks, the more it seemed he was the only one who understood what it was all about.
 
Instead of "The simple things you see are all com-pli-ca-ted..." Pete was trying to say, "....the com-pli-ca-ted things you see are all quite simple..."
 
Maybe they were, and maybe he couldn't articulate it properly or was just talking to the wrong people (although by the time you went through his "list" - who was left?)
 
Regardless of the complications of its day, by the year 2000 (in which this box set was released), most of the music is already familiar and the concepts, well... not so difficult.
 
If you have ever seen
Eddie And The Cruisers (a really good movie), you can understand this...
 
In one of the final scenes (before Eddie disappears), they are in the studio previewing the new album, "Season In Hell" and the record company exec is trashing it. One of the band members has no clue what it's all about (the concepts are too complicated for him) and he exclaims, "They want, 'On The Dark Side' !" Of course Eddie feels that if he can't do something great, there's no point in doing anything at all. He grabs the master tapes and disappears...
 
So it goes with "Lifehouse". Pete thought he was delivering the next
Tommy to the band, but by this time, some "fame and fortune" set it and their eagerness and hunger waned. Great stuff, but eventually all whittled down to one great album "Who's Next" and a bunch of singles and b sides ("Join Together", "Let's See Action" and "Relay") and then to resurface yet again as some of the tracks on Odds & Sods...
 
Of course it didn't end there. Pete used some resurrected material from "Lifehouse" for his magnificent, "Psychoderelict"... and finally to this box set, with some live shows as well...
 
As they say in "
Galaxy Quest", "Never give up, never surrender"...
 
Even by the time
Glyn Johns' produced the songs, the USA single, "Won't Get Fooled Again" says on the label:
 
"From The Motion Picture 'Lifehouse' "

Won't Get Fooled Again - 1971 USA 45
Close-up of 1971 USA 45 (Stock Copy)

Won't Get Fooled Again - 1971 USA 45 (Promo)
Close-up of 1971 USA 45 (Promo)

Close up of 1971 Canada 45
Close-up of 1971 Canada 45
 
Oops!
 
So, in essence, Pete decides to "unveil" "Lifehouse" by himself, using his demos (and some additional materials) in this box set to demonstrate what he intended as "Lifehouse".
 
Why not?
 
The box set is comprised of the following:
 
Discs 1 & 2: "Lifehouse"
Disc 3: Bonus material (a combo of leftovers, reworked material and some live tracks) Disc 4: London Chamber Orchestra versions of ??? (Sorry, couldn't seem to make this work for me)
Disc 5 & 6: The "Lifehouse" Radio Play
 
When the box first arrived, I was as excited as anyone else - more Pete demos! However, when I played the discs, something was wrong. The discs didn't "sound right". Imagine instead of having a volume control knob, you have a "frequency shift knob" and while you are playing the music (whereas everything sounds like it should), you turn this knob and each element of the music "shifts" to a higher frequency. What should have sounded great (as evidenced by some of the same material on the "Who Came First" CD), sounded harsh and hard to listen to. It was like hanging a carrot on a fishing pole in front of the donkey. The donkey wants to eat the carrot, but can never reach it! So here are all these fantastic Pete demos, but they don't sound right! This drove me crazy for a long time. I listened to the material once, and I put the discs back in the box. hMMM...
 
Sony came out with a pro CD recorder that had some "mastering abilities". The first thing I did was try to "remaster" these CDs and somehow shift the frequencies back where they belonged. After multiple tries and lots of wasted discs, I gave up.
 
One day, in 2004, the light bulb went off! There was a flash in my head that said, "I KNOW HOW TO FIX THESE DISCS!!!"
 
I had been listening to the iTunes version of "Real Good Looking Boy" (which came out before the
Now & Then CD) and when I got the latter CD, I noticed it sounded much "harsher" compared to the MP3 from iTunes.
 
It dawned on me that what I hated about MP3s (the lack of frequency response range compared to a CD), was exactly what I needed for this box set. In my mind, that was the solution.
 
So, I took the CDs and converted them to MP3s. With the limited range of the MP3s, it seemed to shift the frequencies that were misaligned back to where they should be! The next thing I knew, I had music to listen to that sounded perfectly fine! Wow!
 
I have shared this "little trick" with anyone who "complained" about the sound on these discs over the years. I probably should have posted something about this years ago, but better late than never...
 
Who would have thought?
 
So, getting to the music itself...
 
The demos for "Lifehouse" have been "floating around" in one form or another for many years.
 
In a limited sense, one of the first LP bootlegs (issued in the 70's),
The Genius Of Pete Townshend has some of these tracks apparently copied off of an acetate. "Who Came First" has several tracks, "Relay" was released on the Sometimes A Great Notion LP, "Scoop", etc...
 
However, what was extremely interesting about this release was that the "Baba O'Riley" and "Teenage Wasteland" mystery was finally revealed.
 
I had always wondered if Pete's demo for "Baba O'Riley" (first released as an ~8 minute instrumental on his 2nd Meher Baba LP, "I Am") was "it", or if Pete had another version of it "lying around", complete with vocals, etc. (in several cases Pete has multiple demo versions of the same song.)
 
Sure enough, not only was there a complete vocal version of "Baba O'Riley", but also an "opener" called... "Teenage Wasteland" - Wow!
 
Rather than go through this song-by-song (if you are reading this, you are probably well familiar with the songs here, if not the track listing is below
)...
 
Besides the wonderful additions of "Teenage Wasteland", "Baba O'Riley" (with vocals) and the long instrumental of "Baba O'Riley" (no vocals), there's a ton of great stuff here.
 
I've always loved the unedited, "Pure & Easy" - those extra moments at the end of the song are very special.
 
Oddly, I was never fond of the "Time Is Passing" demo, but when the Who versions were released, it became one of my favorite Who songs. I can't seem to explain why - something's have no explanation...
 
"Mary" is a cool song (slightly edited on "Scoop") that was actually recorded by The Who, but unfortunately when they went to play the tape, it "crumbled to dust". I've always hoped that another tape would show up one day that had this, so it wouldn’t be "lost forever"...
 
There's a few songs on here which seem "out of place"...
 
"Music Must Change", "Sister Disco", "Slip Kid", "Who Are You"...

 
"Lifehouse" ?
 
Did Pete write all/most of this music previously, rework it and then release it subsequently on later albums?
 
Or, did Pete feel that these songs were somehow inspired by "Lifehouse" and deserved inclusion on the "greater project"?
 
I can't answer that.
 
Incidentally, when I first heard the "Sister Disco" demo on the 1984
Nature Of The Beast LP (apparently recorded from a radio broadcast, where John Entwistle says "1 9 4" in his "Boris" voice throughout), I thought that Pete was trying to sing like Freddie Mercury. I like this version of the song much better than the Who version. Very cool indeed...
 
A few songs appear to be missing...
 
"Classified". This song first appeared as Pete's contribution to the
Glastonbury Fayre LP set. A rougher mix of this was released as a b side with "Greyhound Girl" in 1980 for the UK/Holland, "Let My Love Open The Door" EP. It has the "feel", but was it a "stand alone" song, or an omission?
 
"Electronic Wizardry". This was a bonus track for the Germany CD single of "English Boy" and credited as an unreleased "Lifehouse Track". It was also
reworked (as a demo) and retitled, "Wizardry" for "Quadrophenia"... (seems to fit "Lifehouse" better).
 
Regardless of what's here or what "might" be missing, this is a fantastic box and great music.
 
When it was first released, I seem to recall it selling for about $60 (USD). Now, seeing what's available on eBay, prices seem to start at about $200 and climb to close to $700! (Although I'm not sure anyone has actually paid that much.)
 
It would be nice to see this box reissued and perhaps a fresh remastering to alleviate the technical problems that caused that odd frequency shift...

Track Listing:

CD 1: Teenage Wasteland, Goin' Mobile, Baba O'Riley, Time Is Passing, Love Ain't for Keeping, Bargain, Too Much Of Anything, Music Must Change, Greyhound Girl, Mary, Behind Blue Eyes, Baba O'Riley (instrumental), Sister Disco

CD 2: I Don't Know Myself, Put The Money Down, Pure and Easy, Getting In Tune, Let's See Action, Slip Kid, Relay, Who Are You, Join Together, Won't Get Fooled Again, Song Is Over

CD 3: Baba M1 (2nd Movement), Who Are You (Gateway remix), Behind Blue eyes (new version), Baba M2 (2nd Movement Pt.1), Pure and Easy (reworked original demo), Vivaldi (M5), Who Are you (Live at Shepherd's Bush Empire November 1998), Hinterland Rag, Pure and Easy (new version), Can You Help The One you Really Love (demo), Won't Get Fooled Again (Live at Shepherd's Bush Empire November 1998)

CD 4: Townshend: One Note - Prologue, Purcell: Fantasia Upon One Note (Quick Movement), Townshend: Baba O'Riley, Scarlatti: Sonata K:212, Townshend: Tragedy, Corette: No. 4 Aria, Corette: No. 2 Giga, Corette: No. 6 in D Minor, Corette: No. 3 Adagio and Allegro, Townshend: Hinterland Rag, Scarlatti: Sonata K:213, Purcell: The Gordion Knot Untied: Overture Allegro-Air Rondeau minuet, Air Jig Chaconne, Air Minuet, Overture Reprise, Townshend: tragedy Explained, Townshend: One Note - Epilogue, Purcell: Fantasia Upon One Note

CD 5 and 6: Lifehouse Radio Play

LIFEHOUSE ELEMENTS

Album: Lifehouse Elements

CDs Sampled: Only one version currently available

CD Comments: The mastering is too bright and harsh.

Other Comments: This CD is edit of "The Lifehouse Chronicles", with the addition of the "New Song" demo.

Track Listing: One Note (Prologue), Baba O' Riley (orchestral version), Pure & Easy, New Song, Getting In Tune, Behind Blue Eyes (new version), Let's See Action, Who Are You (Gateway remix), Baba M1, Song Is Over

PETE TOWNSHEND SAMPLER

Album: Pete Townshend Sampler

CDs Sampled: Only one version currently available

CD Comments: Same sound quality as the original source CDs which each track came from.

Other Comments: Similar in concept to the 1998 Windswept Pacific release above - however, this version focuses more on Pete Townshend's solo career.

Track Listing: There's A Heartache Following Me, My Baby Gives It Away, Rough Mix, Keep Me Turning, Misunderstood, Street In The City, Heart To Hang Onto, Rough Boys, Let My Love Open The Door, Jools And Jim, A Little Is Enough, Gonna Get Ya, The Sea Refuses No River, Face Dances Part 2, Communication, Somebody Saved Me, Slit Skirts, Eminence Front (Who version from remixed, "It's Hard"), Athena (Who), Give Blood, Brilliant Blues, Face The Face, Hiding Out, Secondhand Love, Crashing By Design, A Friend Is A Friend, I Eat Heavy Metal, All Shall Be Well, Was There Life, A Fool Says..., English Boy, Now And Then, Predictable, Fake It, Let My Love Open The Door (E.Cola Mix), Who Are You (Gateway Remix)

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