Pete Townshend - Empty Glass (1980/2016) High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/96kHz
Artist: Pete Townshend
Title: Empty Glass
Genre: Rock, Hard Rock, Rock & Roll
Label: © Eel-Pie Recording Productions
Release Date: 1980/2016
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 96kHz/24bit
Recorded: 1978–1980 at Eel Pie Studios and A.I.R. Studios, London, UK
Who mastermind Pete Townshend's strongest solo record was born in a hailstorm of despair, uncertainty, and tribulation. With the once viscerally powerful Who in limbo, the guitarist nearly sunk himself into brandy-drenched oblivion. He emerged with one of his most gripping solo pieces and--perhaps unsurprisingly--the most Who-like album of all his solo work.
Pete plunges into his familiar themes of aging, sexuality, and spiritual decay with fervor, desperation, and commitment. And while „Empty Glass“ does not approach the roaring physicality of the Who at its best, the emotional punch of "Jools and Jim" and "I Am an Animal" is sure to rattle the cage of even the most ardent hard rock devotee. Also of note are Townshend's vocals. Through the entire album, whether on the radio-ready paean to Meher Baba "Let My Love Open the Door," the bracing "Rough Boys," or the sublime "A Little Is Enough," his vocals are hanging on the edge of a cliff, presumably dangling over a certain death.
Pete Townshend was heading toward collapse as the '70s turned into the '80s. He had battled a number of personal demons throughout the '70s, but he started spiraling downward after Keith Moon's death, questioning more than ever why he did what he did (and this is a songwriter who always asked questions). Signs of that crept out on Face Dances, but he saved a full-blown exploration of his psyche for Empty Glass, his first solo album since Who Came First, a vanity project released to little notice around Who's Next (so limited in its distribution that Empty Glass seemed like his solo debut). Some of the songs on Empty Glass would have worked as Who songs, yet this is clearly a singer/songwriter album, the work of a writer determined to lay his emotions bare, whether on the plaintive "I Am an Animal" or the blistering punk love letter "Rough Boys." Since this is Townshend, it can be a little artier than it needs to be, as on the pseudo-Gilbert & Sullivan chorus of "Keep on Working," but the joy of Empty Glass is that his writing is sharp, his performances lively, his gift for pop hooks as apparent as his wit. Though it runs out of steam toward the end, Empty Glass remains one of the highlights of Townshend's catalog and is one of the most revealing records he cut, next to his other breakdown album, The Who by Numbers. --AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
1. Rough Boys 04:03
2. I Am An Animal 03:48
3. And I Moved 03:23
4. Let My Love Open The Door 02:45
5. Jools And Jim 02:37
6. Keep On Working 03:24
7. Cat's In The Cupboard 03:34
8. A Little Is Enough 04:43
9. Empty Glass 05:23
10. Gonna Get Ya 06:23
Pete Townshend, vocals, guitars, synthesizer
John "Rabbit" Bundrick, keyboards
Simon Phillips, drums
James Asher, drums
Kenney Jones, drums
Mark Brzezicki, drums
Tony Butler, bass
Raphael Rudd, brass arrangements on "Rough Boys"
Peter Hope-Evans, harmonica on "Cat's in the Cupboard"
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