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E/O: Pete Townshend vs Kurt Cobain

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Townshend/Cobain

Pete
44
64%
Kurt
25
36%
 
Total votes : 69

E/O: Pete Townshend vs Kurt Cobain

Postby space junk on Thu Feb 01, 2007 4:04 am

"Hope I die before I turn into Pete Townshend." (Kurt Cobain quoted after a ramshackle performance of Baba O'Riley.)
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Postby Mazec on Thu Feb 01, 2007 5:03 am

Another apples and oranges poll...

How about Entwistle or Novoselic?

Keith Moon or David Grohl?

Silverchair or the Monkees?


Anyway, I'll take Cobain. He kept his career short and concise.
You don't see Cobain trying to go on tour after 30 years with two original band members left. And, regarding the above quote, he made good on his word.

There's a lot to be said for that. If only Steven Tyler would have done the same after 7 years being in Aerosmith....
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Postby Tommy Alpha on Thu Feb 01, 2007 6:22 am

Mazec wrote:Another apples and oranges poll...

How about Entwistle or Novoselic?

Keith Moon or David Grohl?

Silverchair or the Monkees?



Heroin or child porn?

I'll take the skag, ta
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Postby Isabelle Gall on Thu Feb 01, 2007 8:40 am

I'll take 'The Who By Numbers' over 'In Utero' any day of the week, a far superior 'Rock Musician in Crisis' record. That this is one of the lesser albums by The Who is worth considering.
I do think that the awful truth about Kurt Cobain (and I can assure you that I say this with no malice), is that he just wasn't as smart as people think he was. As a cultural entity, the 'rocker' he is closest to in spirit would be Elvis Presley. He embodied a project which failed however, whilst Presley weathered the industry better (or maybe just for longer), as it took over.
Townshend understood the rock myth, and his implicit part in it, but wrote (often brilliantly) from this perspective. If Cobain ever understood it, he still bought it nevertheless when he sealed himself within it forever like a glass coffin. He may have gone on to write something as good as 'The Kids are Alright', 'Glow Girl', 'Incredible Journey', 'Don't Even Know Myself', 'The Punk and The Godfather', 'I've Had Enough' etc (I could go on), but we'll never know.
Cobain will also forever look like a pretty boy, whilst Townshend is an old, bald dude with a big nose. When another blowhole asks Townshend how he feels now about that line from 'My Generation', it might as well be Cobain asking him the question.
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Postby madlee on Thu Feb 01, 2007 9:11 am

Tommy Alpha wrote:Heroin or child porn?

I'll take the skag, ta


hey strontium dog, he was doing research.
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Postby madlee on Thu Feb 01, 2007 9:20 am

okay, here's my real answer though. I have to admit I don't really know much of Nirvana. That shit hit right when I was in college and all the kids were listening to it, which made me run in the other direction. From what I know of cobain, I don't think either were/are particularly great guitar/improviser/soloists, but more known as composers... at least in the who, you had 2 other particularly amazing musicians, (some would say among the best on their instruments). Grohl seems pretty good on drums, and the bassist seemed competent enough (never noticed him).

anyway, it seems to me that the who have a lot more hits than nirvana, which may just be a product of having more time on this planet...
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Postby sparky on Thu Feb 01, 2007 9:43 am

Townshend, by miles and miles. I'm fond of Nirvana, but the great majority of their songs hinged on the same pretty simple, if highly successful, formula. Cobain himself recognised this with his sardonic reference to "Verse-Chorus-Verse". I think with "Unplugged" he seemed to be moving towards something new, which could have been great, but he never got there.

The variety of good represented by the Who trumps Nirvana's achievements, even when you net off the more pompous and turgid crap that Townshend is capable of. I prefer their sixties songs, before they got into the rock opera messiness.

Three popular songs that have immediately come to mind from the period that I'm thinking of ("I Can't Explain", "My Generation" and "I Can See For Miles") are all ostensibly simple pop songs, and are all quite different in terms of rhythm, emotional tone and structure. These, I think, are all from before Townshend really started to get ambitious.
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Postby Brett Eugene Ralph on Thu Feb 01, 2007 10:18 am

Both are supremely overrated.
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Postby CJMcG on Thu Feb 01, 2007 11:35 am

Mazec wrote:You don't see Cobain trying to go on tour after 30 years with two original band members left.
Two problems with this statement.
A) He's dead
B) He would've only turned 40 this month, so for to him to go on tour after 30 years would mean that Nirvana started when he was 10.
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Postby zom-zom on Thu Feb 01, 2007 11:41 am

Ridiculous statements on here. Pete Townsend practically invented a lot of the guitar stuff that guys like Cobain use regularly.

Townsend "supremely overrated"? That's absurd, if you like rock and roll, anyways.
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Postby Minotaur029 on Thu Feb 01, 2007 12:04 pm

Not too fond of the Who. Their early work is my favorite stuff...and they had a few great songs scattered throughout their career. Nirvana.
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Postby Mazec on Thu Feb 01, 2007 12:09 pm

Christopher J. McGarvey wrote:
Mazec wrote:You don't see Cobain trying to go on tour after 30 years with two original band members left.
Two problems with this statement.
A) He's dead
B) He would've only turned 40 this month, so for to him to go on tour after 30 years would mean that Nirvana started when he was 10.


You're right, I'll give you the second count. It occured to me right after I posted it, but I was too lazy to go back and change it. I should have used the conditional statement "you wouldn't have seen",

But the "being dead" part still applies.
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Postby mattw on Thu Feb 01, 2007 12:27 pm

Sorry, Townshend's not overrated. Case in point: Live At Leeds. Cobain, on the other hand, was a pretty basic guitarist, but still good.

Edge: Pete.
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Postby madlee on Thu Feb 01, 2007 1:21 pm

I think this debate will end up along age lines: aging hipsters love the who, youthful trend lemmings will love nirvana.
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Postby Minotaur029 on Thu Feb 01, 2007 1:52 pm

Youthful trend lemmings? Last time I checked, Nirvana is like 20 years old now. Kind of amazing really. Rock music must really be in the shitter.
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Postby madlee on Thu Feb 01, 2007 2:18 pm

Minotaur029 wrote:Youthful trend lemmings? Last time I checked, Nirvana is like 20 years old now. Kind of amazing really. Rock music must really be in the shitter.


I know, I know, but couldn't come up with a better example.

should probably be:

def geezers (sic) love the who.

aging hipsters love nirvana.
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Postby Brett Eugene Ralph on Thu Feb 01, 2007 3:01 pm

zom-zom wrote:Ridiculous statements on here. Pete Townsend practically invented a lot of the guitar stuff that guys like Cobain use regularly.

Townsend "supremely overrated"? That's absurd, if you like rock and roll, anyways.


I guess I don't like rock and roll, then. I wish I'd figured that out before I spent the past 25 years playing it.
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Postby placeholder on Thu Feb 01, 2007 3:35 pm

I will defer to the wise Brett Eugene Ralph:

Brett Eugene Ralph wrote:Both are supremely overrated.


Nirvana were absolute horseshit. I could probably compile an double album's worth of Who material I like, so I guess I'll grudgingly vote Townshend.

The potential Waffle Factor for all the over-the-top, fruity rock-opera bombast is cancelled out by him impaling his hand on his tremelo arm while windmilling.

madlee wrote:def geezers (sic) love the who.


Image

This is probably correct.
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Postby wellsyuk on Fri Feb 02, 2007 9:28 am

I'll vote clearly against the kiddy-fiddler in this case, have you heard the Who's latest album?!
I read an article where Pete responded to Cobain's famous 'Hope I die before..' comment, but it was just sad and a bit bitter - yes Live at Leeds was great, and Quadrophenia even more so, but you can't take a joke, and for that lack of self-afacing humour - you lose to Kurt. And you were really crap in the 80s, and you couldn't write songs called 'Moist vagina' and make them sound amazing.
Actually on Live at Leeds there is a section where he talks at length about a young girl being shagged by an old engine driver - sounds rather horrible to listen after what we know now..
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Postby Wood Goblin on Fri Feb 02, 2007 10:04 am

One of the most irritating things about live Cream footage is listening to the sound of three egomaniacs "spicing up" their contributions to the song to the point that it sounds like three people soloing in the same room w/ little idea as to what the other members of the band are playing. The Who had a drummer at least as good as Ginger Baker and a bassist at least as good as Jack Bruce (and a singer who kills either Crapton or Bruce), but Townsend, in terms of technique and general skill, is not an exceptional talent on guitar. (I cannot stand Eric Crapton, even considering his undeniable talent.) Townsend's real contribution to the Who was his ability to marshall that incredible rhythm section into a coherent band. His guitar work provides the foundation for the rhythm section, rather than the (more traditional) other way around.

I don't really know why I'm writing this, because when it comes down to it, I don't have a favorite in the poll. However, I listen to Nirvana far, far, FAR more often than I listen to the Who.
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