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 The Beatles - Abbey Road

The Beatles - Abbey Road This was The Beatles album that introduced a new, sparkling guitar sound. The tone on this album was largely bright and uplifting, as if, has been said, a funereal finale was not the way the world's greatest-ever rock band wanted to bow out.

With The Beatles imploding, 'Come Together' has to be a contender for the most openly ironic beginning to an album. John Lennon's pleading vocals sound rather tired, as if he knows it's not going to happen. A meaty guitar riff makes this an increasingly appreciated Beatles track, especially among indie merchants.

'Something' and 'Here Comes The Sun' sees George Harrison come to the fore as a great songwriter in his own right, and these two compositions are the best two on the album. Frank Sinatra once said 'Something' was the greatest love song ever written. 'Here Comes The Sun' is one of the ultimate feel good songs, from the 'too serious' George Harrison, and British TV and radio presenter, Michael Parkinson, described it as "the most optimistic song ever written."

'Maxwell's Silver Hammer' is one of those, on first listening, irritating Paul McCartney songs, but it gets more and more catchy, and can take over your life if you're not careful...On 'Oh! Darling' Paul is in great raucous form. He can do the heavy rock thing, and I wish he'd been more expansive post-Beatles.

'Octopus's Garden' is a lovely Ringo Starr song. His lilting voice was sadly underused in The Beats.

'I Want You (She's So Heavy)' goes on forever, and is one of the greatest tracks the group ever made. Simple, mesmerising, freestyle rhythm and blues. Their playing was never better.

'Because' and 'Sun King' both have a touch of Beach Boys harmonies about them. 'Because' being particularly wonderful.

'You Never Give Me Your Money' begins with plaintive Paul, and is an effective mood change song - one of Paul's specialities.

'Mean Mr Mustard', 'Polythene Pam', and 'She Came In Through The Bathroom Window' are three loosely connected pieces. Fun.

'Golden Slumbers' has Macca's voice at its moving best, accompanied by sweeping strings, followed by the powerful 'Carry That Weight'. 'The End' is a noisy jamfest ending, with Ringo imitating 'In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida'. Nice idea about the love we take, if untrue. Could have done without the Queen homage at the end, which was a strange, eccentric ending to the greatest-ever rock band's final great album.

Paul Rance,
Posted By: Paul Rance

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