The Who have seen their share of tragedy in a monumental career that began 40 years ago, in 1964. Captured on their 2002 tour, LIVE IN BOSTON showcases the band on their first outing after the unexpected death of bassist John Entwistle. What may have started as an ordinary tour became a moving tribute to Entwistle and his legacy.
The Who: Live in Boston captures the legendary band during their 2002 American tour, which began with the death of John Entwistle, singer-songwriter and superior bass player whose complex lines and thunderous sound was integral to the Who's brilliance. Vocalist Roger Daltrey and guitarist-leader Pete Townshend soldiered on (drummer Keith Moon died in 1978), and Live in Boston finds the rock & roll survivors in passionate if slightly distracted form. Surrounded by old friends (John "Rabbit" Bundrick on keyboards, Zak Starkey on drums, Pete's brother Simon Townshend on vocals and guitar) and shored up by Pino Palladino on bass, Daltrey and Townshend sizzle during the bedrock numbers ("I Can't Explain," "Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere"), touch on the crucial early '70s stuff ("Baba O'Riley"), but catch fire on mini-suites from Tommy and Quadrophenia. Townshend rambles, sometimes unattractively, between numbers, and even Daltrey gets peevish with the crowd. But considering the pressure they were under, their performance is miraculous. --Tom Keogh