Writer: Pete Townshend
Producers: The Who
Recorded: June 1973 at The Kitchen, Battersea, England
Released: September 1973
|Players:||Roger Daltrey — vocals
Pete Townshend — guitar, vocals
John Entwistle — bass, horns, vocals
Keith Moon — drums
|Album:||Quadrophenia (Track, 1973)|
“5.15” was the first single in the U.K. from Quadrophenia, the Who's second full-length rock opera. Released to precede the album in September 1973, it reached Number 20 on the British pop chart.
It wasn't released as a single in the U.S. until September 1979, to help promote the Quadrophenia movie soundtrack. It reached Number 45 on the Billboard Hot 100.
The film version of Quadrophenia was a box office bomb on its initial release, but later became a popular midnight movie. It featured budding rock star Sting in a cameo role as Ace Face, the Mod hero who has a day job as a bellboy.
For the purposes of Quadrophenia's convoluted coming of age story, “5.15,” according to Who chronicler Chris Charlesworth, “relates (main character) Jimmy's extra-sensual experiences on the train from London to Brighton sandwiched between two city gents.”
“5.15” is marked by some of Pete Townshend's wildest guitar soloing and one of Roger Daltrey's most impassioned vocals, while Keith Moon approximates the sound of wheels decelerating on his drums.
The Quadrophenia album peaked at Number Two on both the Billboard 200 and the U.K. album chart.
It was also the group's fifth consecutive million-seller.