The Beatles
1967 – 1970


4.5
superb

Review

by Bron-Yr-Aur USER (39 Reviews)
June 5th, 2006 | 36 replies


Release Date: 1973 | Tracklist


When I was in 8th grade, a certain trend erupted among the majority of my class mates, a trend that for better or worse continues to this day. Virtually overnight, groups like Led Zeppelin and The Jimi Hendrix Experience asserted themselves as forces to be reckoned with in the fast-paced world of the adolescent musical hierarchy. While Nirvana had previously detained the imaginations of many an angsty pre-teen, the raw power chords and abrasive yelling offered in In Utero could no longer compete with the more dulcet styles of songs like Stairway to Heaven" and Let it Be". At the time of this, the latest of the pre-pubescent musical revolutions, the only style of music I could be bothered with was the type that contained a 200 beats per minute rhythm and a blazing pentatonic solo. Being the awe-inspiring person I was, I never felt any need to indulge in any musical experimentation, especially with any group that the illiterate football jock thought was fly". However, much to my modern delight, one day I sat down next to a dorky looking kid in glasses who well call Leo. He was wearing a shirt that said Rubber Soul, and on said shirt was a picture of some odd-looking gentlemen with peculiar hair. I asked this young man just what was on this shirt, only to get a response of Its the Beatles, yo." A hard-rocking person such as myself couldnt possibly be bothered with the group that wrote a song such as She Loves You", but nevertheless, I found myself accepting the CD the kid handed me, entitled The Beatles-1967-1970.

---------------------------------------------

The story of the Beatles has been so widely told in the inner circles of the rock pantheons that the repeating of it all would be painfully redundant. The merging of the two separate takes in Strawberry Fields Forever" is common knowledge, and even so the song itself manages to remain surprising in its delicate but wall-shaking power. The song, and the majority of the first disk for that matter, can be described as acid-rock in its hallucinogen mellotron intro and its gentle guitar apreggios. Such cerebral sounds were new to my ears, ears which only minutes before had been consumed by the Master of Puppets and the Angel of Death. I listened intently as classic songs I had heard long before made their entrances. Nostalgia overwhelmed me as I took note of the jaunty piano playing in Penny Lane". While compilations obviously tend to suffer as a result of lack of cohesion or the absence of vital songs, I could tell that the album that album would contain everything a Beatle fan, old or new, could desire.


Pinpointing the Beatles sound is quite a daunting task, as its arguable that no other band evolved so drastically since Let It Be was released in 1970. While the first disk pre-dominantly deals with the psychedelic phase of the Beatles career (roughly 1966 to late 1967), the second tends to favor the more rock-oriented albums The White Album and Abbey Road. The genius in this idea, of course, is that in one sitting, and indeed, one purchase, you can listen to Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band" and a few moments later indulge in the rockin sounds of Get Back". The only visible downside to this is the fact that the able may turn into an incoherent mess. The creators of the album side-stepped the landmine quite easily by putting the songs in a quasi-chronological order, thus allowing the listener to witness the steps taken towards evolution.

Also present is the somewhat elusive Hey Jude", along with its even more elusive b-side Revolution". In order, these songs close the first disc, and also provide a sense of thematic closure to the psychedelic portion of the album. Indeed, upon inserting the second disk, the young lad Bron-Yr-Aur found himself oddly prepared for what lay ahead on the album, even if I was fresh to the world of classic rock/pop. After the Beach Boys tribute and/or parody Back in the U.S.S.R." made its exit, I found myself even more enamored with the tongue-in-cheek humor of the band. Allow me to elaborate. Its 1968. The Cold War is still raging, and after the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, both sides are far more cautious about the way they handle the other. The Soviets were forbidden to partake in the pleasures of the west, and as such could not legally obtain any album by the Beatles. Suddenly, the group releases a double-album, with the first track speaking longingly of the pleasures of mother Russia, and all in a distinctly western touch.


I was stunned. So sure was I that I knew all I needed to know about music that I hadnt even bothered to listen to the idea that there might be something better than The Haunted. As I was musing this revelation, the second disk continued until I reached a song called Dont Let Me Down". While many consider this an inferior track from an inferior album (Let it Be), this may very well have been the song that stunned me the most. With its haunting, swampy keyboards and guitars and Johns pained and desperate voice, a crescendo of epic magnitude came over me, and I realized I was getting put in my place by a dead guy. George Harrison claims four tracks on the album as his own, and while Old Brown Shoe may be slight, the others are simply superb choices to represent Harrison. Here Comes the Sun" is just as vibrant and charming as ever, and of course, Something" serenades just as efficiently as it did in 1969. Ironically, even as George was asserting himself as a key contributor in the songwriting process, he was still being overshadowed by the dazzling Lennon-McCartney duo, as evidenced by Frank Sinatras claims that the song, which he asserted as his favorite Beatles number, was written by John and Paul.

After closing with the string-drenched McCartney ballad The Long and Winding Road", the album was still playing in my head, some forty minutes after turning it off. While I have never looked back from that point onwards, I have often wondered if there could possibly be a better collection of Beatles songs on one album. Rest assured, I have looked, and can honestly say that the answer is a vehement and undeniable no. The beauty of this album is in its replay value, and in the fact that any fan of music can purchase it and get a good look at the legend that was the Beatles. From the psychedelic, ethereal classics to the rocking and gentler songs, this album contains everything you need to get you on your way, and nary a filler in the lot.

4.5/5


Pros

Fantastic songs
Inexpensive
Superb replay value

Cons

Missing a few classics
Lack of Harrison numbers


From Me to You

Strawberry Fields Forever
I Am the Walrus
Let it Be
Here Comes the Sun
With a Little Help From My Friends
Revolution
Come Together
Hey Jude



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user ratings (200)
Chart.
4.3
superb
other reviews of this album
the_accents (4.5)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Bron-Yr-Aur
June 5th 2006


4405 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Hmm... I think I might need to edit this.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
June 5th 2006


15740 Comments


Bron, you beast.

Digging: Flying Lotus - You're Dead!

Two-Headed Boy
June 5th 2006


4527 Comments


If a Beatles compilation is missing While My Guitar Gently Weeps, chances are it's not worth the money.

Bron, you tank. :thumb:

Bron-Yr-Aur
June 5th 2006


4405 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Oh, but this album contains said track. Bam.

Two-Headed Boy
June 5th 2006


4527 Comments


I'm an illiterate moron. :upset:

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
June 5th 2006


15740 Comments


This compilation owns the other one so hard.

Two-Headed Boy
June 5th 2006


4527 Comments


He obviously stole that amazing idea from me.
And I still might leave too. High five, Bron.:cool:

Bron-Yr-Aur
June 5th 2006


4405 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Well, gotta keep hip. Thanks for the feedback guys.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
June 5th 2006


15740 Comments


Leaving's for pussies.

masada
June 5th 2006


2733 Comments


I must leave your mom a lot then.

tom79
June 5th 2006


3372 Comments


Solid review, and a solid compilation as well. Too many favorites here to name just one.

Digging: Business Models - Room

Bron-Yr-Aur
June 5th 2006


4405 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ah, I've read different. But oh well.

tom79
June 5th 2006


3372 Comments


I'm pretty sure it is the Beach Boys too...

Bron-Yr-Aur
June 5th 2006


4405 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Allow me to edit this and state that both Spat and I were correct. Back In the U.S.S.R. is a parody/tribute of both the Beach Boys and Chuck Berry.

Check it dawg This Message Edited On 06.06.06

masada
June 5th 2006


2733 Comments


"Back in the U.S.A"

"Back in the USSR"

Hmmm.



El_Goodo
June 5th 2006


1008 Comments


If a Beatles compilation is missing While My Guitar Gently Weeps, chances are it's not worth the money.

Oh, but this album contains said track. Bam.

I'm an illiterate moron.



I found that to be hilarious...And Im glad I'm not the only who LOVES Don't Let Me Down. That's probably my second favourite Beatles track after Strawberry Fields...*goes and listens to Don't Let Me Down*

rockinbass17
June 5th 2006


11 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Pretty good, for a compilation. I usually hate compilations of "greatest hits", but this doesn't seem a bad way to start someone off on latter Beatles material.

Jimmy
June 5th 2006


717 Comments


1) Frank Sinatra said that Something was the greatest love song of all time.

2) Everyone always slights Old Brown Shoe, it's one of my favorite Beatles tracks

3) Great review

4) I prefer the compilations of the bands singles on Past Masters volumes 1 and 2

John Paul Harrison
June 5th 2006


1014 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

However, much to my modern delight, one day I sat down next to a dorky looking kid in glasses who well call Leo. He was wearing a shirt that said Rubber Soul, and on said shirt was a picture of some odd-looking gentlemen with peculiar hair.
___________________________________________<

"A friend of mine..." would have simply sufficed, Mr. Bron-Yr-Aur.

[But I'm not really offended.] Actually, I am quite flattered. I find it "fly", as is the rest review in general.

Good job.

This Message Edited On 06.05.06

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
June 5th 2006


16089 Comments


I don't find anything dorky about fly homeslice.



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