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Are you a Mod or a Rocker?

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Are you a Mod or a Rocker?

That is the question you'll face when you watch the DVD of the classic flick "Quadrophenia," based on the Who's 1973 rock opera album of the same name. The DVD is slated to be released Sept. 25.

The 1979 film is still a gritty portrayal of disenfranchisement and teenage angst. Rival groups — the aforementioned Mods and Rockers — wreak havoc in early 1960s England, which leads Jimmy Cooper (Phil Daniels) on a downward spiral of indecision, destruction, despair and — in some interpretations — liberation.

What caught my attention was how the themes of prejudice and restlessness are still applicable in today's society. Nothing has improved over the past 20 years. There is still discrimination, ethnocentricity and hate-inspired violence ravaging the world. There is still youthful unrest and delinquency and, as in the final moments of the film, the sad discovery that idols may not be what they're cracked up to be.

With an almost anarchic soundtrack — including the Who's mod-rocking works "My Generation," "The Real Me" and "Love Reign O'er Me" — and sometimes dizzying cinematography, the film still holds its own. But wait until you get a load of the DVD extras.

There's the original theatrical trailer; a photo gallery, which includes publicity photos and snapshots of the filming; "Pop-up Video"-like trivia tags and cast and crew filmographies.

One of the main extras is the interview with Sting, who as some of you may remember, played an important role in Jimmy's final, gravity-enhanced statement during the film.

My favorite extra, however, is a quiz. And, like this column, it begins "Are you a Mod or a Rocker?" No matter which one you choose, try the flip-side answers and you'll get a good chuckle or two.

In the meanwhile, if you want to get your fill of the Who (vocalist Roger Daltry, guitarist Pete Townshend, the late drummer Keith Moon and bassist John Entwistle), you can go to the back catalog — which includes "The Who Sell Out," "Tommy," "Who's Next," "The Who by Numbers," "Who Are You" and "The Kids Are Alright," just to name a few. Last year, MCA Records released "BBC Sessions," a 25-track live collection of the Who culled from performances heard on BBC broadcasts and TV performances. And just a heads up— on Sept. 18, MCA Records will release the remastered definitive "Live at Leads," which was originally unleashed on the world in 1970.

Mods and Rockers unite!


E-mail: scott@desnews.com