“Glow Girl” closes out the 1995 reissue of “The Who Sell Out“, The Who’s third album which was originally released in 1967. The song was recorded during 1968, and was planned to be on an album entitled “Who’s for Tennis?” which obviously never came to be. It captures the band at their most poppy phase with jangly guitars and sweet vocal harmonies that last throughout the song, but still manages to contain that rock edge via the swaggering basslines and erratic drum fills.
Despite the light and heartwarming tone the song details the scene where people are getting on a flight which unfortunately crashes shortly after taking off. But after an instrumental break of guitar string scrapes the song comes to the pleasant conclusion in which the “glow girl” is born. To a “Mrs. Walker”, funnily enough. That caught me by surprise when I listened to it for the first time too. Does that mean Pete Townshend just stole bits from this track and “Rael 1” and inserted them into “Tommy”, or did he have that music planned all along? Who knows.
The thing I know is, after more than an hour or so of great music and a few mock adverts, “Glow Girl” with its pleasant overtones and silly mock-Sgt.Pepper locked groove is the perfect way to cap off the “Who Sell Out” listening experience.