How The Who’s “Eminence Front” Tells The Story Of Pete Townshend’s New Sober Lifestyle

In The Who’s Eminence Front from their 1982 album, It’s Hard, songwriter and guitarist Pete Townshend sings about the delusions and drug use of the wealthy and hedonistic.

Music vlogger Noah LeFevre of Polyphonic takes a look at the song from the former alcoholic and drug addict Townshend’s perspective, making his decision to quit a profound change of personal direction.

A keyboard sequence provides a catchy repetitive loop… though it’s easy to miss the sequence and the keyboard beneath it features frequent tiny variations. There’s the illusion of growth and slight changes but in the end, it all comes back to the same place. That repetitiveness is key to the song and it reflects the lyrical themes for Townsend the endless rock star life is nothing but a repetitive sham: wake up, snort coke, go to a party, snort more coke, and fall asleep as the sun is coming up…there are slight differences in the city you’re partying and the people you’re partying with but in the end it all feels the same it’s a desperate loop with no forward motion