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THE BEATLES

The Beatles

 

Proto-Prog

4.15 | 537 ratings

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MrCleveland
4 stars The White Album basically goes everywhere, just like the last three albums that they released ('Revolver', 'Sgt. Pepper', and 'Magical Mystery Tour'.)

"Back in the USSR" Starts off the album with an early-60's style sound. As a matter of fact, Paul McCartney and Mike Love of the Beach Boys were brainstorming about this song when they were in India. (Well, the song has Beach Boys harmonies. And I think 'Pet Sounds' is another Proto-Prog album.) Do you think it would be called 'Back in the Former USSR' now?

"Dear Prudence" is another song that was helped out by another musician named Donovan. It has a great guitar riff and vocalization. The bridge has a Georgian-style chant in it. The ending of the song goes faster and it ends with the same guitar riff.

"Glass Onion" mentions the songs that the Beatles did during the Sgt. Pepper-era. There's a heavy-bass line and has the strings coming in. There's even a few surprise instruments such as the piano and recorder. The string part in the ending is very haunting.

"Ob-la-di Ob-la-da" is a song proving that even though the Beatles were having issues, they could still have a fun time. Simon and Garfunkle's 'Celia' and Offspring's 'Why dont you get a job' are heavily influenced by this song.

"Wild Honey Pie" basically is just a Shameless filter leading into Bungalow Bill. I like the classical guitar ending, which sounds like the intro to Yes' 'Roundabout'.

"The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill" is another song that isn't that serious. It's actually a story like a Saturday Afternoon mantine with a story-like setting. Yoko even sings on the 3rd verse. The guitar sounds like a mandolin and then there's the mellotron, cheers, and whistling in the end.

"While my Guitar Gently Weeps" introduces Eric Clapton on the guitar. (He too also dabbled into Prog-Rock with Cream.) This is George Harrison's best song with the Beatles. Even after George's death, Paul McCartney and Eric Clapton would play this song.

"Happiness is a Warm Gun" is the darkest song that the Beatles may have done. The lyrics are very nonsensical such as 'Mother Superior Jumped the Gun'. And then there's the sexual innuendo in the end (What would you expect about warm guns?) This song was used on Michael Moore's 'Bowling for Columbine'.

"Martha my Dear" actually is dedicated to Paul McCartney's dog. It has a Nilsson-style sound. And as a matter of fact, also sounds like ELO's 'Mr. Blue Sky'.

"I'm So Tired" is a very good Blues-style song sung very well by John. What does John mumble in the end?

"Blackbird" can be about the Civil Rights Movement. In 1968, MLK was assassinated and many blacks were upset that their Icon was shot down. And in Britain, bird is slang for girl. It also has a good sound effect with the black bird.

"Piggies" mentions the UK Political background. In a way, It's got a Monty-Python feel especially in the end. (They too were suppressed by the British Government with their show.) Unfortunately, this song was used by Charles Mansion. But it has a good harpsichord riff.

"Rocky Raccoon" has a Dylanesque style with a harmonica and guitar. This is another story-song.

"Don't pass me by" is Ringo's debut song. It's not that good, one of the weakest songs on the White Album.

"Why Don't we do it in the Road" is McCartney's dirtiest song ever. And has the least words on this album.

"I Will" has a folky twang. (This is why James Taylor covered this song.) But It's a good acoustic song.

"Julia" is a good ending for the first part of The White Album. There was some rapper who used this song, but the original with the double guitar and voices should NEVER be sampled!

"Birthday" starts off the second part of The White Album. This too is another rocker, just like 'Back in the USSR'.

"Yer Blues" is the most bluesy song that the Beatles has ever done. This song was also used on The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus.

"Mother Natures Son" is a beautiful song. This is more about getting back to nature and McCartney did like being around nature. It has a very good horn arrangements.

"Everybodys Got Something to Hide Except for me and my Monkey" may be the longest title in any Beatles song. The song is very nonsensical. And the Fire bell has a good touch to the song.

"Sexy Sadie" AKA-Maharishi is a slander toward the guru when John knew that he just disappointed the Beatles. It has an Elton John-like sound with the piano and the vocals. (Another good Prog song is 'Funeral for a friend/Love lies bleeding' by Elton John'.)

"Helter Skelter" is the hardest Beatles song ever. KISS was even surprised that the Beatles did the song. And the song fades in and out and back again. It almost has that feel of King Crimson's '21st Century Schizoid Man'. And Ringo's 'Ive Got Blisters On My Fingers' is classic!

"Long Long Long" Talks about God. George converted to Hinduism when he felt empty and couldn't find God. But when he went to India, he felt closer to God. The haunting organ that Paul plays had a bottle of wine on the speaker that fell down making a good sound effect. The song sounds like a Procol Harum song with the organ. (As a matter of fact, George Harrison hired Gary Brooker to play on his solo album 'All Things Must Pass' when he heard the song 'All this and more'.)

"Revolution #1" can be an example of a studio out take. But I still like the single version.

"Honey Pie" is a Salad Days song, such as 'Winchester Cathedral' and Queen's 'Lazin on a Sunday Afternoon'. It has that 1930's Nostalgia. (I would like to see someone make a video for this song on YouTube by using Silent movies. And yes, Al Jolson's Jazz Singer might be on it.)

"Savory Truffle" is about Eric Clapton's sweet-tooth. When George would go to Clapton's house, they would eat chocolates, but Clapton had toothaches. (There's a British Stereotype with British people having bad teeth.) It also has a trademark George Harrison horns which he would use on 'Got my mind set on you'.

"Cry Baby Cry" has a Medevial lyrics, but the song is a lightweight. The ending has McCartney's "Can you take me back" and talking in the studio which leads to 'Revolution #9'.

"Revolution #9" is 1968. War, Protests, Assassinations, and Corruption. Paul wasn't there when the song was recorded and it has many 'Paul is Dead' rumors such as when you play the record in reverse, it sound like 'Turn me on dead man'. BTW-What classical songs were used on this?

"Goodnight" ends this album after all the corruption from 'Revolution #9'. Ringo sings this songs and It seems like he's almost Jiminy Cricket singing 'When you wish Upon a Star'. It's got that Disney-like sound.

In any way, this is a concept album!

MrCleveland | 4/5 |

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