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The Who - Eminence Front - Lyrics Meaning

Eminence Front was released on The Who's 1982 album, "It's Hard".

The word eminence is synonymous with reputation, fame, or importance. Front means face or fazade. Combined, the words refer to one's face that they exhibit to match their reputation. In the first verse, when the sun shines, or when people participate in an activity, they forget about what it is that they're hiding from others so as not to spoil their reputation. The expression "put on" means that something is artificial or false.

The chorus, "Come on join the party, dress to kill". Suggests that putting on an eminence front is something that many people do. "Dress to kill" means that people who are putting on the fazade do so to the extreme.

Pete Townsend often introduced this song as "what happens when you take too much white powder", meaning cocaine. In 1982 when this song came out, the pleasure-seeking, partying lifestyle was popular. The song is a description of a party where everyone is trying to impress everyone else by acting fake. While the song can be interpreted as describing an isolated event, it can also describe how people act fake in everyday life in order to impress others and gain popularity.

Meanings of other songs by The Who:
Baba O'Riley
I'm a Boy
My Generation
Pictures of Lily