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The Beatles - Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band CD (album) cover


The Beatles



4.33 | 972 ratings

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Frankie Flowers
4 stars This is an album well worth owning. For me, the musical ideas and songwriting here is just one-of-a-kind and it all sounds very different to the previous "Revolver". The Beatles had incorporated a variety of newer influences, and the fact that their instrumentation now covered a wider range including strings, brass, woodwind, hammond organ and sitar was an amazing step into the world of contemporary pop music.

Many reviewer's call this one of most overrrated albums of all time, but most must also acknowledge how influential it was. As a boy, I remember being dazzled after hearing "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" for the first time. I forced myself to make sense of the obscure lyrics on the back of the record sleeve, imagining a girl with kaleidoscope eyes and rocking horse people eating marshmallow pies!

A definite main highlight is "A Day In The Life", which alone makes the album worth purchasing. I don't believe you will ever hear such a composition elsewhere. "Getting Better" is a fabulous song and very catchy."Good Morning, Good Morning" and "Lovely Rita" are more of what you'd call decent songs, but they share some killer piano and guitar solos between them. "Fixing A Hole" is very nice too with its harpsichord backing. The title track is a great opener and it definitely contained some unexpected arrangements whilst " A Little Help From My Friends" is warm and charming with Ringo's vocals.

Personal favourites include "Being for the Benefit of Mr Kite", which is a top example of the unusual production, extraordinary for its time. The song is laced with a collection of calliopes and fairground organs. The circus feeling couldn't have been captured more perfectly. It gives the piece distinctive character. Right up there with the superb "Day In The Life" has to be "Within You Without You" which was created out of Harrison's burgeoning interest in Indian music and was perhaps the biggest deviation from the band's old sound. The melody on this one is nothing short of stunning and the lyrics and music very spiritual. "When I'm Sixty-Four" is another beautifully composed and well written song. What a lovely clarinet ensemble.

Admitedly, I admire this record for many nostalgic reasons and have been listening to it since I was eight years old. As a Beatles fan, it isn't quite my favourite of their work, but it certainly has the power to grow on the listener over time. I do love all the band's later work very much. The thunderous chord from the grand piano that dramatically ends this album definitely left an impression on me when I was young. It always sends a shiver down my spine. My rating: 4 stars.

Frankie Flowers | 4/5 |


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