The Who rocks fans with new album and potentially last UK tour ever
Classic rock band The Who are back with a new album and 10-date UK tour set to hit arenas around the country next spring beginning on 16 March 2020 in Manchester. Their upcoming record, simply titled WHO, will be their first in 13 years and will hit shelves on 22 November 2019. This year also marks the 55th anniversary of The Who’s launch in London in 1964 — and you won’t want to miss Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend’s return to Blighty.
This is especially true since the Mirror has reported that this could be Daltrey’s last tour. The Who lead vocalist told the newspaper, “This will possibly be my last tour. I have to be realistic that this is the age I am and voices start to go after a while.”
With over 100 million records sold world, the English band is one of the biggest in rock history. With a catalogue including you-know-the-words hits like “Who Are You” and “Won’t Get Fooled Again”, they haven't released a new album since 2006’s Endless Wire. That doesn’t mean they haven’t been performing for British fans though.
The Who last took to the stage in the UK in July, playing alongside a 40-piece orchestra at Wembley Stadium in London as part of their Moving On! Tour. They have also done major gigs at festivals like British Summer Time Hyde Park and Glastonbury in recent years.
The rockers announced their upcoming 12th studio album WHO just hours before their UK tour in support of it. The 11-track record was largely recorded in Los Angeles and London this past spring and summer, and is being led with the single “Ball and Chain”.
“I think we’ve made our best album since Quadrophenia in 1973,” singer Roger Daltrey said in a statement, as quoted by Rolling Stone. “Pete hasn’t lost it. He’s still a fabulous songwriter, and he’s still got that cutting edge.”
WHO will address various current events and cultural subjects including London’s Grenfell Tower fire tragedy, musical theft, spirituality, reincarnation, memory and the experience of being an aging rock star. The new album’s cover was created by the band’s longtime friend, artist Sir Peter Blake, and was unveiled at the Pace Gallery in New York City earlier this month.
Can’t wait to hear the album? Keep reading to see where you can pre-order WHO, when The Who’s 2020 UK tour dates are, and how to get tickets.
- Group members: Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend currently; past members include John Entwistle, Keith Moon, Doug Sandom and Kenney Jones
- Number of studio albums: 12 total; My Generation (1965); A Quick One (1966); The Who Sell Out (1967); Tommy (1969); Who's Next (1971); Quadrophenia (1973); The Who by Numbers (1975); Who Are You (1978); Face Dances (1981); It's Hard (1982); Endless Wire (2006); Who (2019)
- Musical style: Rock and roll
- Record sales: Over 100 million worldwide
- Most famous singles: “I Can’t Explain”, “Baba O’Riley”, “Pinball Wizard”, “Won’t Get Fooled Again”, “Behind Blue Eyes”, “Long Live Rock”, “The Kids Are Alright”
What are The Who 2020 UK tour dates?
The Who are embarking on a 10-date UK and Ireland tour in March and April 2020, hitting arenas across the country. For Townshend, a requisite for his involvement in the performances was new material.
He tells the Mirror: “This has nothing to do with wanting a hit album [or] the fact The Who need a new album. It’s purely personal. It’s about my pride, my sense of self-worth and self-dignity as a writer.”
The Who 2020 UK and Ireland tour dates:
- 16 March — Manchester Arena, Manchester
- 18 March — 3 Arena, Dublin
- 21 March — Utilita Arena, Newcastle
- 23 March — SSE Hydro Arena, Glasgow
- 25 March — First Direct Arena, Leeds
- 30 March — Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
- 1 April — Resorts World Arena, Birmingham
- 3 April — Motorpoint Arena, Nottingham
- 6 April — M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool
- 8 April — SSE Wembley Arena, London
What is on the WHO tracklist?
With a 13-year gap since The Who’s last album, naturally there is a rock-concert-high volume of anticipation for WHO. Original band members Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend are joined by drummer Zak Starkey and bassist Pino Palladino on the collection. The record also features contributions from Simon Townshend, Benmont Tench, Carla Azar, Joey Waronker and Gordon Giltrap.
Rolling Stone quotes Townshend as saying, “This album is almost all new songs written last year, with just two exceptions. There is no theme, no concept, no story, just a set of songs that I (and my brother Simon) wrote to give Roger Daltrey some inspiration, challenges and scope for his newly revived singing voice.”
He continues, “Roger and I are both old men now, by any measure, so I’ve tried to stay away from romance, but also from nostalgia if I can. I didn’t want to make anyone feel uncomfortable. Memories are OK, and some of the songs refer to the explosive state of things today. I made new home studio demos of all these songs in the summer of 2018 using a wide collection of instruments old and new.”
Can’t wait to hear The Who? You can pre-order their upcoming album WHO on the band’s website here.
- All This Music Must Fade
- Ball and Chain
- I Don’t Wanna Get Wise
- Beads On One String
- Hero Ground Zero
- Street Song
- I’ll Be Back
- Break The News
- Rockin’ In Rage
- She Rocked My World
How to get The Who 2020 Tour tickets
Not sure who has The Who WHO Tour tickets? They’ll be going on sale on Friday 20 September on Ticketmaster.
Given the high level of anticipation for their upcoming album and the 2020 UK tour, we’d say chances are the “My Generation” band will have sold-out shows in no time. Don’t worry. Fans can always find guaranteed genuine tickets to sold-out concerts on StubHub.