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Thursday, November 13, 2008

Review: The Who At Kilburn: 1977 (DVD)

The Who – The Who At Kilburn: 1977
2008, Image Entertainemnt

The Who At Kilburn: 1977 is a wonderfully misleading title. Not only do you get the Kilburn, North London show from December 15, 1977, but the highlights and bonuses from a 1969 London Coliseum gig as well! That's two DVDs and 138 minutes of The Who live! The Kilburn gig is legendary among fans of The Who. The show was invite only and was filmed for The Kids Are Alright. It was also one of the last times that Keith Moon performed live with the band. Bootlegs have circulated of this show for years, but The Who At Kilburn: 1977 has been digitally restored, remastered and is presented as a highly watchable professional product. Highlights of this show include Baba O’Reilly, Behind Blue Eyes, Pinball Wizard and Won’t Get Fooled Again.

The Kilburn show is a bit ragged, with a lot of the sort of energy you’d see channeled into punk music. Townsend was crazed on stage for this show, and Moon was at his most energetic. Even with the occasional flub (and there are a few), The Who were very much in form for The Kilburn show.

But wait. For all the talk about The Kilburn show, you also get footage from London in 1969. This may be the best part of the deal. 1969 saw The Who at the arch of their onstage energy and power. Included here is the first ever live, longform performance of Tommy. Other highlights include Young Man Blues, My Generation and I’m Free.

The set also comes with a very nice booklet including liner notes by Richard Barnes (The Who: Maximum R&B), Richard Evans (The Who’s Art Director), Alan Light (Spin, Vibe magazines) and Nigel Sinclair (movie producer, media icon). All in all this is a great bargain, and it must be driving fans of the band crazy to wait for the November 18, 2008 release date. Some folks won’t enjoy all of the camera work, as the angles do seem a bit off at times. It’s good to remember that whoever put this package was working with footage shot 31 and 39 years ago, respectively. Despite it’s flaw, The Who At Kilburn: 1977 is worth every cent.

Rating: 4.5 Stars (Out of 5)

You can learn more about The Who at You can purchase a copy of The Who At Kilburn: 1977 at

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