Blu-ray: The Who: Tommy: Live At Royal Albert Hall

Blu-ray, DVD & CD Release Date: Oct. 13, 2017
Price: DVD $15.98, Blu-ray $16.39, CD $17.09
Studio: Eagle Rock

The concert film Tommy – Live At The Royal Albert Hall by The Who captures the first-ever live performance of the venerable rock opera in its entirety, boasting over well over two hours of content.

In April 2017, The Who took to the stage at London’s Royal Albert Hall to perform their rock opera Tommy live in its entirety for the first time in their long career. Previous Who live shows had always dropped two, three or four tracks from the album, but for this show, in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust, the band would perform every track.

Joining original the Who members, guitarist Pet Townshend and vocalist Roger Daltrey, are Townshend’s brother Simon on guitar and occasional vocals and drummer Zak Starkey, who’s been pounding for the boys for nearly two decades now. There are also three keyboardists/synth players who provide the horns, strings, etc.

As a fundraiser for the Teenage Cancer Trust, a cause that Daltrey champions, this latest live Tommy is an earnest show and it looks like the boys are genuinely enjoying themselves. Daltrey is particularly enthusiastic, offering the old microphone-swinging bit and his familiar titanium-throated growl (except on some of the higher bits, which are handled by Simon Townshend). Pete is equally upbeat, frequently helicoptering his latest Fender Stratocaster and handling his own vocals with aplomb (that is, aplomb for a 72-year-old man).

This edition is a must for Who completists, of course, but the previously released abridged live versions of the rock opera about the deaf, dumb and blind kid who sure plays a mean pinball remain the gold standard as far as the material is concerned. And that means Woodstock or the 1970 Isle of Wight Festival.

Buy or Rent The Who – Tommy: Live At The Royal Albert Hall
on DVD | Blu-ray | CD

About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.