They have soldiered on as a duo (with backup musicians) for the better part of the last two decades, however, The Who with Roger Daltrey and Pete Townsend don’t appear to have any thoughts of slowing down quite yet. Just announced are plans by the band to release their first studio album in more than a decade and also undertake a U.S. symphonic tour.
Guitarist Pete Townshend told Rolling Stone that any upcoming tour would only exist if the band had new material to offer. He said, “It’s purely personal. It’s about my pride, my sense of self-worth and self-dignity as a writer.” If the album does happen, it will be the band’s first since 2006’s ‘Endless Wire.’
As far as what listeners might expect from the new material, Townshend said that the demos he has completed include “dark ballads, heavy rock stuff, experimental electronica, sampled stuff and cliched Who-ish tunes that began with a guitar that goes yanga-dang.” Of course,much of this depends on vocalist Daltrey and while he has signed-on to the project, he has yet to make contributions to the new songs. Daltrey has offered some promising news, saying that, “There’s at least five or six [songs] I can lay into and I’m sure they’ll come out incredible.”
Dates for the proposed 30-date arena tour have yet to be confirmed. The plan is for the Who to hit the Northeast starting in April, then return to the rest of North American in September and October.
Daltrey said as he and Townsend approach their mid-70s, this is the best way for the Who to continue: “We’re old men now,” he said. “We’ve lost the looks. We’ve lost the glamour. What we’re left with is the music and we’re going to present it in a way which is as fresh and powerful as ever.”