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The Who: The Vegas Job

featuring: Pete Townsend, Roger Daltrey, John Entwistle, and Zak Starkey

90 minutes (E) 1999
D.V.D. UK DVD Region 2 retail

RATING: 6/10
reviewed by Debbie Moon
The passing of time is a cruel business, isn't it? Are these greying, balding blokes really the same rockers who famously sang, "I hope I die before I get old?" Yet here they are, still belting out The Kids Are Alright, at an age when most of their contemporaries think 'the kids' are actually symbolic of all that's wrong with the world.
   If they're aware of the irony, they're not admitting to it on this record of their reunion set - which a brief documentary tells us was part of an epic Las Vegas extravaganza, sponsored to the tune of several million by a dotcom company that turned out to be an elaborate fraud by a pastor's son turned conman. Now that's teen rebellion...
   But let's forget the ravages of age, and turn our attention to the music. A solid 90-minute set with minimal flashy stagecraft, the concert is a satisfying canter through their greatest hits, lapped up by an audience of dedicated fans. Their talents, both instrumental and vocal, have lasted well, and the music remains enjoyable, foot-tapping rock. Though they don't have much to say between numbers, the band throw themselves energetically into the classics, and are obviously having just as much fun as their fans.
   Of course, with a straight-up record of a fairly simple stage performance, you do wonder if the audio CD wouldn't have been just as satisfying. The DVD extras are minimal: a couple of interviews (with Entwistle and Daltrey), the four-minute event documentary, and a trawl through audience members who discuss their devotion to the band. Essential for The Who completists, interesting for lesser fans; but those without a prior affection for the band may not find themselves won over by this reliable but fairly ordinary performance.

I Can't Explain,  Substitute,  Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere,  Pinball Wizard,  See Me, Feel Me, Touch Me, Heal Me,  Baba O'Riley,  My Wife,  5:15,  Behind Blue Eyes,  Who Are You?,  Magic Bus,  Won't Get Fooled Again,  The Kids Are Alright,  My Generation

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