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The Beatles - Help! CD (album) cover

HELP!

The Beatles

 

Proto-Prog

3.44 | 462 ratings

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Rune2000
Special Collaborator
Prog Metal Team
3 stars Being a huge fan of the later Beatles era I happen to disagree with most of the fans who think that Revolver was the first mature Beatles album. Personally I think that Help shows the first signs of this transition, even thought those moments are few and far between.

With the release of A Hard Day's Night the Beatles reached the peak of, what I call, their 2-minute song era and so a new approach was definitely in order for their followup album. It seems to me that the band was well aware of this but it always takes a few transitional albums to reach that goal. Help does indeed have its share of the band's early sounds, but why improve the formula when you've got a good thing going for you? I realize that my two previous statements might seem contradictory but what I'm going for is a sense of balance where the artist/band improves just enough of their style without alienating their core fan base. It's this balance that definitely exist on Help, even if I personally would have liked the progress to be more prominent.

The highlights here begin with the first sounds of the title track, proceed with the subtle ballad I Need You, the sharp lyrical and musical themes of I've Just Seen A Face and let's not forget the crown jewel simply known as Yesterday. All these compositions have the developing qualities that show the Beatles adding a few new ideas to their already established sound roster. It's true that none of these tracks can actually be labeled as progressive or even Proto-Prog. Instead, Help works almost like Talk Talk's album It's My Life that might not have seemed all that transitional at the time of it's release but now that we have a complete picture it's much easier to trace bits and pieces of the band's later style to that relativity early release.

Help was among the first the Beatles albums that I've heard and my interest definitely took me on an interesting journey from there on. Unfortunately this album has aged quite a bit since the first time I experienced it, more than 15 years ago, and today I mainly listen to it out of pure nostalgia that it invokes in me. Simply a good but non-essential piece of rock music that I can recommend to anyone who wants to see the complete development pattern in the Beatles' sound.

***** star songs: Help (2:20) Yesterday (2:07)

**** star songs: Night Before (2:36) You've Got To Hide Your Love Away (2:11) I Need You (2:31) Another Girl (2:07) You're Going To Lose That Girl (2:20) Ticket To Ride (3:12) Act Naturally (2:32) It's Only Love (1:58) I've Just Seen A Face (2:07)

*** star songs: You Like Me Too Much (2:38) Tell Me What You See (2:39) Dizzy Miss Lizzy (2:53)

Rune2000 | 3/5 |

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