banner ad
banner ad
banner ad

WHO ARE YOU – An All-star Tribute To The Who

| 1 November 2012 | Reply

Label: Cleopatra Records
Reviewed by Shane Pinnegar

Tribute albums can be a mixed bag – it’s like walking on a razor’s edge when you want to put your stamp on a track, but don’t want to affront the legions of fans of the classic original.

Cleopatra Records out of L.A. have compiled this collection, well worthy of the label “An ALL STAR tribute to The Who”, and there is nary a dud amongst these 16 tracks – mostly due to the diverse array of contributors on board.

From track one we see things have been mixed up a bit: KK Downing’s guitar work on Eminence Front (with vocals by Asia’s John Wetton and keys from Derek Sherinan) is very different from the furious riffing and solos of his day job with Judas Priest.  Def Leppard vocalist Joe Elliot hits a home run with a mighty and atmospheric Love Reign O’Er Me, supported by Huw Lloyd-Langton’s guitar work, Carmine Appice’s drumming and Rick Wakeman’s majestic keyboard flourishes.

The Who’s status as mod legends and punk proginators is reinforced by Dave Davies’s garagey riffing through My Generation, while The Damned’s Rat Scabies thrashes his kit and The Vibrator’s Knox sneers and snarls into the mike.

Danish groovers The Raveonettes step right out of the box with an atmospheric and bassy The Kids Are Alright, painting light and shade with their wonderful “summer of love” harmonies and transforming the song brilliantly.

The Sweet pitch in a lively, bouncy version of Won’t Get Fooled Again; Todd Rundgren smashes Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere with help from Carmine Appice’s insane drumming; phew – take a breath, we’re only halfway through!

From here Iggy Pop plays I Can’t Explain pretty straight (which is ironic, really); Pat Travers roughs up Behind Blue Eyes with some jazz-rock guitar and raw vocals; Ginger Baker never really lets loose on his kit during Magic Bus (Herman & The Hermits’ Peter Noone sings while Yes’s Peter Banks plays guitar); and country star Gretchen Wilson gets down and dirty with a fantastically throaty take on Who Are You over Randy Bachman’s guitar.

He who might have been Robert Plant – Terry Reid – shows off his great, underrated rock vocals on Pinball Wizard while Night Ranger’s Brad Gillis shreds away genius style.  Another highlight is the always-wonderful Squeezebox featuring prolific guitarist (Fish, Porcupine Tree, solo artist) John Wesley and a virtuosic display of rock violin from ex-King Crimson man David Cross.

38 Special’s Donnie Van Zant and Don Barnes don’t bring enough of The South to Bargain, despite the heavy hitting backing from Deep Purple’s Ian Paice and Ted Turner’s (Wishbone Ash) solid guitar work.

Album closer The Seeker features a blistering guitar performance by Leslie West and some of the rockingest vocals we’ve heard from Joe Lynn Turner in many a moon – it puts much of what’s come before to shame and ensures the album finishes on a real high.

Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

Editor, 100% ROCK MAGAZINE

Leave a Reply

Please verify you\'re a real person: * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

banner ad
banner ad