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THE BEATLES

Proto-Prog • United Kingdom


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The Beatles biography
It goes without saying that the Beatles were one of the most important, influential and progressive bands in the history of rock and pop music. There are many places on the Internet where a full biography may be found, and their history has been covered so many times that here we consider only their place as a progressive band.

The music of the Beatles was notable mainly for the songwriting partnership of Lennon/McCartney, which bucked the trend of bands going to songwriting houses for their material and helped to convince other bands to write their own songs. On their earliest albums, it was the quality of the Lennon/McCartney songs that stands out from the covers that were also included.

The other aspect of the Beatles music that remained a constant throughout their carreer as a band is the wide range of influences and styles that they assimilated into their own. Their hunger for experimentation in style and sound was to last and expand right up to their swansong album, "Abbey Road".

A frequent speculation is that it was the Beatles who finally swayed Bob Dylan in 1964/5 to use electric instruments, and in so doing brought about the fusion of folk and rock that would lead to the development of psychedelia, via the Byrd's "Eight Miles High" and the San Francisco music scene, "Swinging London" and other movements. In fact, many other factors led to the rise of those cultures, but the importance of the Beatles' music should not be overlooked.

The influences were mutual; The Beatles and the Byrds particularly not only exchanged a number of ideas, but also met several times - including one notable occasion which included Bob Dylan and Peter Fonda that resulted in the song "She said, she said" ("Revolver"). It was Roger McGuinn of the Byrds who turned George Harrison onto the sound of the sitar and led George to have lessons from Ravi Shankar.

Harrison also adapted the riff from The Byrds' "Bells of Rhymney" to write the song "If I Needed Someone", dedicating the song to Roger McGuinn who wrote it, and used the sitar in "Norwegian Wood", both songs appearing on the "Rubber Soul" album, an album that contains so many song writing styles that it can be difficult to believe that it's all the same band. "The Word" particularly seems to herald the off-beat musical and rhythmic style that would be prevalent in psychedelia, and the wider-ranging folk-like feeling and more introspective lyrics in many songs reflects the impact of th...
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The Beatles official website

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Buy THE BEATLES Music


Abbey RoadAbbey Road
Remastered
EMI 2012
Vinyl$17.69
$10.95 (used)
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56m 22s
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1964 MEET THE BEATLES 1st album by THE BEATLES Mono LP Capitol Records T 2047 USD $50.00 Buy It Now 1h 8m
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1h 15m
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1h 16m
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1h 24m
THE BEATLES:"SGT PEPPER".1967 PARLOPHONE MONO-NO "A DAY IN THE LIFE"! NEAR MINT! USD $168.12 [6 bids]
1h 24m
THE BEATLES - Songs Pictures And Stories Vee-Jay LP VJ 1092 souvenir sticker USD $113.08 [12 bids]
1h 28m
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1h 29m
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The Beatles Rock 'n' Roll Music Vol. 2 OBI Japan Album LP Vinyl Record EAS-70129 USD $9.99 [1 bids]
1h 29m
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1h 29m
LP a hard day's night
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP abbey road
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP for sale
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP help
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP let it be
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP magical mystery tour
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP please please me
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP revolver
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP rubber soul
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP sgt. pepper's lonely hearts club band
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP the beatles (white album)
BEATLES
~ USD $27.11
LP with the beatles
BEATLES
~ USD $21.69
LP yellow submarine
BEATLES
~ USD $18.23


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THE BEATLES shows & tickets


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THE BEATLES discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

THE BEATLES top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.01 | 312 ratings
Please Please Me
1963
2.84 | 292 ratings
With The Beatles
1963
3.51 | 335 ratings
A Hard Day's Night
1964
2.70 | 292 ratings
Beatles For Sale
1964
3.41 | 354 ratings
Help!
1965
3.90 | 514 ratings
Rubber Soul
1965
4.37 | 679 ratings
Revolver
1966
4.33 | 773 ratings
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
1967
4.13 | 535 ratings
Magical Mystery Tour (US Version)
1967
4.16 | 588 ratings
The Beatles
1968
2.47 | 277 ratings
Yellow Submarine
1969
4.49 | 743 ratings
Abbey Road
1969
3.25 | 413 ratings
Let It Be
1970
3.52 | 144 ratings
Let It Be - Naked
2003

THE BEATLES Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.88 | 30 ratings
The Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl
1977
1.77 | 15 ratings
The Beatles Live! at the Star Club in Hamburg, Germany; 1962
1977
3.11 | 47 ratings
Live at the BBC
1994
2.02 | 6 ratings
Last Night In Hamburg
1999

THE BEATLES Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.55 | 40 ratings
A Hard Day's Night
1964
3.10 | 33 ratings
Help!
1965
3.00 | 4 ratings
The Beatles At The Shea Stadium
1966
3.81 | 59 ratings
Yellow Submarine
1968
3.89 | 25 ratings
Let It Be
1970
2.99 | 32 ratings
Magical Mystery Tour
1978
5.00 | 1 ratings
Ready Steady Go! The Beatles Live
1985
4.44 | 9 ratings
The First U.S Visit
1991
5.00 | 2 ratings
Video Collection
2003
4.05 | 3 ratings
A Long And Winding Road
2003
4.00 | 1 ratings
In Washington D.C, Feb. 11th, 1964
2003
4.00 | 1 ratings
The Beatles With Tony Sheridan - The Beginnings In Hamburg
2004
0.00 | 0 ratings
Destination Hamburg
2007
5.00 | 1 ratings
Turn Left At Greenland
2008
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Tomorrow Show With Tom Snyder
2008
0.00 | 0 ratings
In Performance
2008
0.00 | 0 ratings
Yesterday
2008
1.88 | 6 ratings
The Beatles At The Budokan
2008

THE BEATLES Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.83 | 6 ratings
Introducing The Beatles
1963
1.93 | 15 ratings
Meet the Beatles
1964
1.72 | 8 ratings
Something New
1964
1.44 | 8 ratings
The Beatles' Story
1964
4.00 | 9 ratings
Beatles '65
1964
2.61 | 16 ratings
The Beatles' Second Album
1964
2.20 | 29 ratings
A Hard Day's Night (US version)
1964
2.09 | 4 ratings
The Beatles' First
1964
2.63 | 30 ratings
Rubber Soul (US)
1965
2.24 | 27 ratings
Help (US version)
1965
3.50 | 6 ratings
The Early Beatles
1965
3.75 | 4 ratings
Beatles VI
1965
3.25 | 15 ratings
Yesterday and Today
1966
2.32 | 6 ratings
A Collection Of Beatles Oldies (But Goldies !)
1966
3.37 | 22 ratings
Revolver (US)
1966
3.67 | 32 ratings
Hey Jude
1970
3.19 | 79 ratings
1962-1966
1973
3.69 | 90 ratings
1967-1970
1973
3.15 | 14 ratings
Rock 'n' Roll Music
1976
3.50 | 2 ratings
The Beatles Tapes (From The David Wigg Interviews)
1976
3.85 | 18 ratings
Love Songs
1977
4.00 | 7 ratings
Rarities
1978
4.83 | 6 ratings
The Beatles Album Collections
1978
3.13 | 4 ratings
The Beatles Ballads
1980
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Beatles Box
1980
2.27 | 3 ratings
Rarities (US version)
1980
5.00 | 3 ratings
E.P. Collections
1981
5.00 | 1 ratings
Hear The Beatles Tell All
1981
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Beatles Talk Downunder (1964)
1982
5.00 | 2 ratings
The Beatles Singles Collections
1982
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Complete Silver Beatles
1982
0.00 | 0 ratings
First Movement
1982
2.50 | 2 ratings
Reel Music
1982
3.60 | 5 ratings
20 Greatest Hits
1982
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Beatles Mono Collection
1982
5.00 | 5 ratings
The Collection
1982
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Beatles Original Mono-Record Box
1986
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Beatles On Compact Disc - Help / Rubber Soul / Revolver
1987
2.04 | 7 ratings
The Early Tapes of The Beatles
1987
3.40 | 61 ratings
Past Masters Volume 1
1988
4.10 | 63 ratings
Past Masters Volume 2
1988
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Conversation Disc Series
1988
0.00 | 0 ratings
Talk Downunder Vol. II
1990
2.50 | 2 ratings
The Silver Beatles - Original Decca Tapes and Cavern Club Rehearsals 1962
1991
2.81 | 54 ratings
Anthology 1
1995
3.87 | 60 ratings
Anthology 2
1996
3.61 | 57 ratings
Anthology 3
1996
0.00 | 0 ratings
Words Of Love
1998
3.36 | 37 ratings
Yellow Submarine Songtrack
1999
0.00 | 0 ratings
Magical And Mystical Words
1999
0.00 | 0 ratings
Things We Said Today
2000
3.90 | 71 ratings
The Beatles '1'
2000
0.00 | 0 ratings
Big Beat Box
2001
4.44 | 9 ratings
Capitol Albums Vol 1
2004
4.50 | 8 ratings
Capitol Albums Vol 2
2006
2.92 | 69 ratings
Love
2006
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Beatles - 1967-69 - Acoustic Submarine
2006
4.93 | 37 ratings
The Beatles In Mono Box Set
2009
4.65 | 54 ratings
The Beatles Stereo Box Set
2009
4.73 | 37 ratings
Past Masters (Remastered)
2009
4.20 | 27 ratings
The Beatles 1962-1970
2010
3.00 | 2 ratings
Anthology Highlights
2011
2.36 | 5 ratings
Tomorrow Never Knows
2012

THE BEATLES Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

1.40 | 6 ratings
My Bonnie
1961
2.87 | 15 ratings
Love Me Do
1962
2.57 | 12 ratings
Please Please Me
1963
2.37 | 10 ratings
From Me To You
1963
3.64 | 13 ratings
She Loves You
1963
2.68 | 10 ratings
I Want To Hold Your Hand
1963
2.67 | 3 ratings
The Beatles Christmas Record
1963
3.50 | 10 ratings
Twist And Shout
1963
3.00 | 3 ratings
The Beatles Hits
1963
2.50 | 2 ratings
The Beatles No. 1
1963
2.65 | 8 ratings
All My Loving
1964
3.04 | 6 ratings
Long Tall Sally
1964
3.96 | 5 ratings
Extracts From The Film A Hard Day's Night
1964
2.00 | 1 ratings
Extracts From The Album A Hard Day's Night
1964
2.50 | 7 ratings
Beatles For Sale
1964
2.00 | 1 ratings
Souvenir of Their Visit to America
1964
2.00 | 1 ratings
Four By The Beatles
1964
3.55 | 11 ratings
Can't Buy Me Love
1964
3.55 | 11 ratings
A Hard Days Night
1964
3.36 | 11 ratings
I Feel Fine
1964
3.00 | 8 ratings
If I Fell
1964
2.00 | 1 ratings
Another Beatles Christmas Record
1964
3.82 | 11 ratings
Ticket To Ride
1965
3.85 | 13 ratings
Help !
1965
3.83 | 12 ratings
Day Tripper
1965
2.00 | 1 ratings
The Beatles Third Christmas Record
1965
2.00 | 1 ratings
4 By The Beatles
1965
2.00 | 1 ratings
Beatles For Sale No. 2
1965
2.00 | 1 ratings
The Beatles Million Sellers
1965
3.86 | 7 ratings
Yesterday
1966
4.09 | 11 ratings
Nowhere Man
1966
3.49 | 16 ratings
Paperback Writer
1966
3.63 | 18 ratings
Eleanor Rigby
1966
2.00 | 2 ratings
Pantomime: Everywhere It's Christmas
1966
4.87 | 24 ratings
Strawberry Fields Forever
1967
3.55 | 18 ratings
All You Need Is Love
1967
4.03 | 15 ratings
Hello Goodbye
1967
2.17 | 4 ratings
Christmas Time (Is Here Again)
1967
3.82 | 23 ratings
Magical Mystery Tour (UK Version)
1967
3.29 | 15 ratings
Lady Madonna
1968
4.27 | 24 ratings
Hey Jude
1968
2.00 | 1 ratings
The Beatles Sixth Christmas Record
1968
4.06 | 17 ratings
Get Back
1969
3.11 | 17 ratings
Ballad Of John And Yoko
1969
3.15 | 16 ratings
Something
1969
2.00 | 1 ratings
The Beatles Seventh Christmas Record
1969
3.06 | 12 ratings
Let It Be
1970
4.00 | 3 ratings
The Beatles Christmas Album
1970
3.50 | 2 ratings
From Then To You
1970
3.68 | 10 ratings
Yesterday
1976
3.60 | 10 ratings
Back In The U.S.S.R.
1976
3.00 | 5 ratings
Twist And Shout
1977
3.93 | 18 ratings
Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band/With A Little Help From My Friends
1978
3.00 | 2 ratings
Movie Medley
1982
2.00 | 5 ratings
Love Me Do
1982
3.00 | 3 ratings
Baby It's You
1995
3.93 | 10 ratings
Free As A Bird
1995
3.96 | 8 ratings
Real Love
1996
3.80 | 5 ratings
Yellow Submarine Songtrack Sampler
1999
3.50 | 2 ratings
Within You Without You / Tomorrow Never Knows (promo)
2006
2.25 | 4 ratings
Love (promo)
2006
3.33 | 3 ratings
Help! (7 Song Radio Sampler)
2007

THE BEATLES Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Magical Mystery Tour (US Version) by BEATLES, THE album cover Studio Album, 1967
4.13 | 535 ratings

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Magical Mystery Tour (US Version)
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by ridemyfacetochicago

5 stars I don't remember me listen to music and don't knowing Strawberry Fields Forever and Penny Lane, in those days The Fab Four were the best, the most innovative and everybody listen to them. And they remained the best till today. For sure Magical Mystery Tour is belonging to this site of Prog, it is a Prog Music record, or at least Psychedelia record, which is the same. They have here some masterpieces that are way away of their time like Strawberry Fields, I am the walrus and All you need is love, well known songs by everybody that, really, deals with prog. Like all their albums of that era there is groundbreaking, there is influence on the others to come but, again, there is music that will stay with us a long, long time. Music is what counts, no? You don't have to be complicated to do music, and also, if you make complicated music it has to have melody, no? Else why do you write music, for the sake of writing it ?

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 Revolver by BEATLES, THE album cover Studio Album, 1966
4.37 | 679 ratings

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Revolver
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by ridemyfacetochicago

5 stars I don't understand why in the first 100 records of all time there is no single LP by the Beatles ! Not Revolver, Sgt Pepper, Abbey Road or the White. Revolver is the first record that brings The Beatles to another level of composition and expression. We have here a passage to Psychedelic Rock (which is for the 60's what is Progressive Rock for the 70's, and of course, the father of the Prog), but this move, to another level, is made using the main gift that The Beatles had : the power to write beautiful songs, eternal songs. And songs they wrote : from Taxman to Tomorrow Never Ends everything is perfect. Really perfect. There is no need to pass song by song and describe them...The record as a whole is perfect. I think also of the impact they made in 66' on the whole industry, on the artists and the huge influence they had on music yet to come... Viva the psychedelia and The Beatles !! Highly recommended, in fact I think that these are the very basic stones that someone must listen and know by heart before entering the gate of the Prog, it makes the understanding of this phenomena of Prog much easier. And one more thing : I have and know by heart every record by Yes, Genesis, Van Der Graaf, King Crimson, Floyd and so on, but I love Yellow Submarine....It makes me feel forever young...

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 Rubber Soul by BEATLES, THE album cover Studio Album, 1965
3.90 | 514 ratings

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Rubber Soul
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by ridemyfacetochicago

5 stars Rubber Soul-Drive my car, Norwegian wood, Nowhere man, Michelle, Girl, In my life are songs for ever. And the rest are also beautiful songs. I still look at this site and don't understand how The Beatles are so underrated, although I noticed their ratings are climbing steadily. Maybe in the end there will be justice done and they will be recognized as the Masters. They where not progressive music in their first period (1963-1965) as we understand today progressive music (Yes, Van der Graaf, King Crimson, Genesis, Pink Floyd and so on), but they made records for ever. As to say more : I think that many people will say about Beethoven : no, not Beethoven he is not progressive... But to stick to Rubber Soul, another fine one on the long strike of 12-13 records of geniality by the Beatles.

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 Love Songs by BEATLES, THE album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1977
3.85 | 18 ratings

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Love Songs
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by thwok

4 stars If this album was released on CD at a reasonable price (not the absurd, almost $20 you have to pay these days), I would snatch it up in a minute. It contains many of my favorite Beatles songs, scattered throughout the band's original albums. The fact that this album does span the band's less-than 10 year recording career is one of its selling points. I think the inclusion of "I Will", a great song that I didn't even know existed until Alison Krauss' brilliant cover version, alone earns this album an extra star.

We all know the music, so discussing individual songs is mostly unnecessary. I think the deciding factor in rating Love Songs is the choice of songs. I don't own all of The Beatles' original albums, and I wouldn't want to. So, I think this is a great gathering of their songs in one place. The only suggestion (it's not exactly a complaint) I would make for Love Songs is to include more music. "Hey Jude", for instance, would fit here with a lot of breathing room left over.

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 Let It Be by BEATLES, THE album cover Studio Album, 1970
3.25 | 413 ratings

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Let It Be
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by friso
Prog Reviewer

4 stars The Beatles - Let it be (1970)

The Let is Be album is a record made of pre-recorded material that was to be recorded for a live audiance. An album of new songs recorded live, a great idea - but it never happened. Calling these recordings demo's doesn't do them must justice, but the other late Beatles albums are recorded significantly more professional. The Beatles had enjoyed the best popmusic productions since 1966 and the band used the studio as an instrument. Because of them being unable to perform for regular audiances the necessity of being able to fully reproduce songs live had been removed from the artistic proces. The recordings of the Let it Be sessions where passed on to Phil Spector who gave some songs orchestral arrangements - the subject of many discussions still today.

This is actually one of my favorite Beatles records, simply because the band sound like a band playing music. The music lives, is in the moment, sharp and exciting. On this record the talent of the Beatles really shines threw, both as songwriters 'nd as performers. The album has both art rock songs and eclectic pop tracks, but I like all songs on this album.

Conclusion. Let is Be is the Beatles album in which they once again sounded like a band. I love it. Four stars.

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 Tomorrow Never Knows by BEATLES, THE album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2012
2.36 | 5 ratings

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Tomorrow Never Knows
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by thwok

2 stars This was originally available only on iTunes as a limited edition. There were 1000 copies made in 2012. There are now 2 listings on ebay for $700 and $950! The folks at iTunes went through a lot of trouble to make this LP look "vintage". There are 4 other ratings of this on Prog Archives, and they all rated it highly. I sincerely hope that the other reviewers didn't pay nearly that much for this album. My issue here is not with the music, even though some of these songs are not the Beatles' best. We all know the Beatles were brilliant.

This compilation is simply unnecessary. If you wanted these songs on LP, even the two "alternative versions", I'm confident you could buy all the original records on the 'net a whole lot cheaper! Since this is the Beatles, and my fellow reviewers clearly liked it, I'll grant this two stars. There are a 100 better compilations than this one.

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 The Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl by BEATLES, THE album cover Live, 1977
2.88 | 30 ratings

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The Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by Lear'sFool

2 stars Good actual Lord. Here's a story for the ages. Right at the height of The Beatles' original zeitgeist, when they still played live to fans who wouldn't let anyone actually listen to the music, their record companies tried their darnedest to get a high quality taping of a live performance to ply to eager fans. Unfortunately for their plans, none of their recordings turned out in anywhere near decent quality, when venues and guilds even let them record. Back then, they had the good sense not to drop any of this on the world. But in the Seventies, with Beatlemania II still raging, a different company managed to kick out an even poorer recording of one of the old Hamburg shows. This led a panicked EMI to force George Martin to try and salvage two bad recordings of Hollywood Bowl shows, a year apart, into something they could sell to make up lost ground. And... well, he couldn't really salvage it. SQ remains in the dumps, and there's nothing here for lo-fi to make better. The fans are way too loud and annoying. The haphazard stitching together of the two shows results in both "A Hard Day's Night" and "Help!" being the newest Beatles album. It's great to have another version of their cover of "Roll Over Beethoven", but this is worth very little. *sigh* We did need a good Beatles live record, but this wasn't it. Definitely a collectible for fans, but this comes out more like a Dada art project meant to critique the culture of pop music than anything else.

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 Beatles For Sale by BEATLES, THE album cover Studio Album, 1964
2.70 | 292 ratings

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Beatles For Sale
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE Team

2 stars THE BEATLES were the hottest act in musical history at this point and Beatlemania was showing no signs of cooling off any time soon. Like many early 60s releases FOR SALE was the title for the UK release not seeing a US release until 1987 (but the US would see a slightly reworked version called BEATLES 65.) This was the point when the band was a victim of its own success. The constant touring and release of a new album every six months depleted the band's original songs and because of record company pressure the Fab Four were pretty much forced to cough up another album right after "Hard Day's Night." With very little original material to supply the band reverted back to covering 50s songs only unlike those on the first couple of albums, most of these tracks seem stale and like a retrograde instead of an energized attempt at refreshing their sound.

Personally I find this the weakest album in the entire BEATLES discography. It just feels forced. There are a few tracks like "No Reply" that are up to snuff, but even the single "Eight Days A Week" is one of my least favorite BEATLES hits. The covers are fairly boring and overall this album just feels unnecessary. There are some firsts in the BEATLES evolutionary path here. The band had their only cover song hit #1 in Australia with Chuck Berry's "Rock And Roll Music" and John Lennon was incorporating personal experience as the basis for songwriting as heard in "I'm A Loser" showing his influence from hanging out with Bob Dylan. This album isn't a total waste of time but it's nevertheless the one that I find myself rarely wanting to put on. Luckily things would only get better from here. 2.5 rounded down

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 Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band by BEATLES, THE album cover Studio Album, 1967
4.33 | 773 ratings

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Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by drubella

5 stars Not much can be said about Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band in a review that hasn't already been covered in great detail in books. The only thing left to do is throw in my 2 cents. This album changed the way people thought about popular music. Not just the average radio listener, but musicians and aspiring musicians as well. It made it possible for people to hear pop music as more than just throwaway singles, but as an album as a whole. None of the songs were ever released as singles. The first real concept album. Even the cover art reflects the content that lies within. In my opinion, no other album splintered the rock genre into so many other sub-genres. Obviously, other factors and bands were involved to form more specialized factions of rock, but, I believe this album was the catalyst. It opened up a lot of people's eyes to something possible beyond the two and a half minute pop song. It didn't hurt either that being the most popular band in the world made it easier to get a concept album out to a large amount of people. Some of who might not have listened to The Beatles otherwise, either because they listened to a more sophisticated style of music or because the "I Want to Hold Your Hand" crowd hated it..

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 Revolver by BEATLES, THE album cover Studio Album, 1966
4.37 | 679 ratings

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Revolver
The Beatles Proto-Prog

Review by drubella

4 stars Love them or hate them, The Beatles have left an impression on the music world that I doubt will ever be duplicated. Although they could never be truly considered progressive rock, they were certainly the most progressive in the genre of rock. Just listen to Please Please Me and then to Abbey Road(Let It Be was recorded before Abbey Road but released afterward) and it does not seem like a mere six years between the two. Those two albums are light years apart! In fact, it hardly sounds like the same band! Revolver, to me, is the first obvious connection The Beatles have to prog rock. There are three main reasons that I believe why. #1. Studio experimentation. Although The Beatles get all the credit as the songwriters, my hat goes off to George Martin and the studio team at EMI. Things had to be tried in ways never thought of before. Instruments being played and devices being used in ways that they were not intended. Sometimes things had to be invented. Imagine trying to make Lennon "sound like an orange!" Martin may have been the only person on earth that could translate what they wanted to do. So I give him as much credit as The Beatles in the technical aspect. And when listening to the album, don't forget this was done on four track tape! All overdubs had to be dumped down in order to make room for more overdubs. No computers. Loops were spooled by hand and fed into tape machines. There was no sampling. #2. Overindulgence. Spending a lot of time recording one song is common in prog rock, but, back then most bands went into the studio and bashed out their tunes that were either rehearsed on the road, or written by someone else, as quickly as possible. Singles were still more important than album tracks. The amount of attention paid to Tomorrow Never Knows alone for John Lennon to realize his vision is a good example; even though the song would have definitely not been chosen for release as a single at the time. All of the studio experiments, multiple takes and overdubs caused the album to take 300 hours to record and mix. Please Please Me took only 19. However, by the time the Revolver sessions began, money for studio time was not an issue. #3. Cover Art. Almost all rock album covers of the day were a posed picture of the band or artist, but this is an actual drawing/collage by an artist(Their friend Klaus Voormann). It could be said that the Rubber Soul cover with the elongated heads is art. Truth is, that was a happy accident! Later, elaborate artwork on prog rock albums would sometimes become as important as the music itself, with the entire package being art. Often times the artwork almost overshadows the musicians themselves and there are not even photos of the band members at all, but in the mid sixties, for the most part, only jazz album covers would have anything on them that could be considered art. Revolver is an album that is more musically serious than any of The Beatles previous efforts. It is the album that shows them going in a different direction from boy/girl songs riddled with personal pronouns to exploring what was really possible in music. Revolver still has elements of the mop top Beatles, but it was a vision of what was to come.

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