A very enjoyable day in the Hyde Park sunshine amongst a crowd of 65,000 alongside my wife Julie and her long-term friend Donna Alexander. Delighted to find a great spot in the Premium View area, we first appreciate the summer sounds of Gaz Coombes. No Supergrass classics in a brief seven-song set, but an uplifting start to the proceedings.
Next up is show stealer Johnny Marr, who presents a perfect balance of old and new, via The Right Thing Right, Stop Me If You Think You’ve Heard This One Before, Easy Money, 25 Hours, New Town Velocity, Generate! Generate!, I Fought the Law, There Is a Light That Never Goes Out, Getting Away with It (the Electronic song) and the awesome How Soon Is Now? The Kaiser Chiefs are all energy and catchy tunes, while Paul Weller offers a couple of genuine gold nuggets in Changing Man, Broken Stones, You do something to me, plus Jam classics That’s Entertainment, A Town called Malice and a very welcome, mod sharp, Start!
The Who take to the stage and the timeless chords of I can’t explain kick the 8-piece band into gear. Drummer Zak Starkey, guitarist Simon Townshend and bassist Pino Palladino anchor the windmilling Pete and strolling Roger, who continue with a run of fine 1960’s singles (The kids are alright, I can see for miles) and 1970s’ diamonds: Bargain, Who are you, The Seeker and Join together. There is no doubt the band miss the playing and spirits of John Entwistle and Keith Moon and the dangerous edge and youthful energy that made their gigs thrilling in their late 60s, early 70s peak is understandably long gone. But the set is packed with the songs that made their name live and a stirring See me, feel me/Listening to you and Won’t get fooled again ensure the hordes disappear into the night with a soundtrack of some of the greatest rock music ever written and performed echoing in their heads.