(UK) 29th June sees the release of ‘Truancy: The Very Best Of Pete Townshend’ as part of a new deal with UMC / Universal Music. The 17 track album features two brand new songs and is part of on extensive reissue programme for Townshend’s solo material that will see the catalogue remastered and reworked that will run into 2016. ‘Truancy’ was remastered at Abbey Road and features highlights from nine key Townshend albums including the singles – Rough Boys, Let My Love Open The Door, Face Dances (Pt. 2), English Boy and Face The Face.
Of the compilation Townshend says, “I hope it offers a selection that works to introduce new fans to my solo work. I am a bit of a dabbler I’m afraid. I am as interested in building, developing and playing with recording studios as I am with making music. The Who has taken up most of my road hours, and in this year of the 50th anniversary of our first significant year in 1965, we are back on the road again”. The two brand new, previously unheard songs on ‘Truancy’ are ‘Guantanamo’ and ‘How Can I Help You’.
Pete Townshend on Guantanamo “I thought this song might never see the light of day, but now President Obama has relaxed sanctions in Cuba, it is a happy sign he might go further. Technically this was created in rather a laborious way. I recorded a long organ drone using my vintage Yamaha E70 organ (used many times by me on Who and solo recordings in the past), and then cut it into something that sounded like a song using a feature unique to Digital Performer called “chunks”. This creates blocks of groups of tracks that can be assembled and disassembled easily, like cutting multitrack analogue tape with a razor blade, but with less blood. The lyric grew out of the implicit angry frustration in the organ tracks”
Pete Townshend “How Can I Help You was inspired partly by the frustrating emotional difficulties experienced by a valued colleague. He was in great physical pain and it drove him into depression. I performed an acoustic version of the song on my partner Rachel Fuller’s webcast show In The Attic. I began this recording with an acoustic guitar, added drum loops and breaks then Gretsch and Rickenbacker 12 string guitars and John Entwistle’s hybrid Thunderbird-Fender Precision bass”.
TRUANCY: THE VERY BEST OF PETE TOWNSHEND
Pure And Easy (from Who Came First)
Sheraton Gibson (from Who Came First)
Let’s See Action (Nothing Is Everything) (from Who Came First)
My Baby Gives It Away (from Rough Mix)
A Heart To Hang On To (from Rough Mix)
Keep Me Turning (from Rough Mix)
Let My Love Open The Door (from Empty Glass)
Rough Boys (from Empty Glass)
The Sea Refuses No River (from All The Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes)
Face Dances (Pt. 2) (from All The Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes)
White City Fighting (from White City)
Face The Face (from White City)
I Won’t Run Anymore (from The Iron Man)
English Boy (from Psychoderelict)
You Came Back (from Scoop)
Guantanamo (New song)
How Can I Help You (New song)