Pete Townshend reaches grandiose heights with his orchestral remake of Quadrophenia anthem “Love Reign O’er Me.” The new video is the first sample of the songwriter’s upcoming Classic Quadrophenia project, a symphonic rendering of the Who‘s legendary 1973 rock opera.
British tenor Alfie Boe channels the explosive angst of Roger Daltrey – but with an operatic twist. The singer is joined by the London Oriana Choir and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, as the latter builds circling strings, marching snares and dramatic brass into huge crescendos. The video blends clips from the 1979 Quadrophenia film with new footage shot at Brighton Beach, Ultimate Classic Rock reports.
Classic Quadrophenia, orchestrated by Rachel Fuller, is out June 9th via Deutsche Grammophon. On July 5th, Townshend, Boe and the Royal Philharmonic will perform the album at the Royal Albert Hall.
Townshend and the Who have shown renewed interest in the LP in recent years. The band released an expanded Quadrophenia reissue in 2011 followed by the expansive Quadrophenia and More Tour in 2012 and 2013. In 2014, the group unveiled the Quadrophenia Live in London DVD that documented a July 2013 show at London’s Wembley Arena.
Townshend and Daltrey are currently on the road for the North American leg of their expansive “Who Hits 50!” tour. The band has dates scheduled throughout May and will resume touring from mid-September until early November, with almost every date featuring 2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees Joan Jett & the Blackhearts as openers. At a press conference last June, Daltrey described the career-spanning trek as “the beginning of a long goodbye.”
“It will have a finality to it,” the singer said of the jaunt. “We’ll stop touring, I’m sure, before we stop playing as a band, but just like Eric Clapton said, the grind of the road [is] incredibly tough on the body…”
Townshend also revealed the duo’s plans to begin work on a new studio album. “I gave Roger three demos of three rough songs and happily he likes them,” Townshend said. “I really liked the pub rock sound of the album [Daltrey] did with Wilko [Johnson] [2014’s Going Back Home] and we may try to make the record in a slightly more basic way than we normally work, although a lot of my writing these days is pretty complicated. It’s more prog rock than pub rock!”