[134] The Beatles - The Beatles (White Album) (1968)

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3 juin 2009, 11h05m

The Beatles - The Beatles

Aha, here are The Beatles again. Slowly falling apart. This album is a collection of songs made by John Lennon, songs made by Paul McCartney, a few songs made by George Harrison and even one by Ringo Starr. Reading the story about this album is learning the story of songs recorded without all of the other band members even knowing about it (Julia, Why Don't We Do It in the Road?,...) and there's only one song on which John Lennon and Paul McCartney sing together (Birthday). Out of 30 songs! The result is an album that has a lot of variation from the beginning to end. And as all songs have a Beatles stamp on them, this doesn't lower the coherence.

It is said about this album that it somehow marked the end of the psychedelic era, the Beatles coming back with their feet on the ground. But concluding this is a regular pop/rock album would be wrong. There is a great variation in styles, and the boundaries The Beatles are trying out reach even further than on Revolver. Sure, the studio sound effects and distortion try outs have somehow lessened, but they are replaced by many other novelties: Paul McCartney trying to be hard (and succeeding) in Helter Skelter, John Lennon trying to be avant-gardistic (and succeeding, together with his lovely Yoko) in Revolution 9 are just the most obvious examples. I won't say much about my idea of Revolution 9, but suffice to say that it doesn't get better played backwards.

This album is long, very long. Thirty songs, that's almost a compilation. The result is of course that some songs are less interesting. But then again, the good songs on this albums are without exception all really extraordinary: Back in the U.S.S.R., Dear Prudence, Glass Onion, (not cool to admit but also) Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da (so catchy!), Wild Honey Pie (one of my favourites, that voice!), The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill, While My Guitar Gently Weeps (George Harrison proves that quality is better than quantity), Happiness Is a Warm Gun, I'm So Tired, Piggies, Rocky Raccoon (that beginning!), Don't Pass Me By (Ringo Starr also proves that quality is better than quantity), Julia, Sexy Sadie, Helter Skelter, Cry Baby Cry,...

At times, The White Album is The Beatles at their best. Again complete essential music.

(Geniaalststst: Back in the U.S.S.R., Glass Onion, Wild Honey Pie, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, Happiness Is a Warm Gun, Julia - Yes, Side 1 is the best)

PS: Eric Clapton plays the guitar wonderfully on While My Guitar Gently Weeps, but still I love the stripped-down violin version on the Love album even more... (although that is completely missing the guitar point of the lyrics of course)

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