The second night of The Who’s first run ever playing at the Fillmore East is an unbelievably great document of the band in its early prime, still full of the punk attitude that they would initially define while beginning to venture off into more artistic and experimental territory. Every minute of this performance is fascinating and much of this material cannot be found, in better quality or at all, on any other Who recordings. This set captures the entire band fully engaged in their music. Although many songs were still short and concise during this stage of their career, the intensity level is undeniable. Opening the show with Eddie Cochran’s “Summertime Blues,” they immediately set a bar that most other bands could never even approach.
From the opening minor chords to the upward key change near the end, ‘Pinball’ is a rock tour-de-force, brimful of ideas, powerchords, great lyrics and tight ensemble playing.
~From “The Who – The Complete Guide To Their Music” (Charlesworth & Hanel)
Today we celebrate one of The Who’s best songs – Pinball Wizard.
An explosive debut, and the hardest mod pop recorded by anyone. At the time of its release, it also had the most ferociously powerful guitars and drums yet captured on a rock record. Pete Townshend’s exhilarating chord crunches and guitar distortions threaten to leap off the grooves on “My Generation” and “Out in the Street”; Keith Moon attacks the drums with a lightning, ruthless finesse throughout.
~Richie Unterberger (allmusic.com)