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One of the greatest albums of any era
Abbey Road - The Beatles
Member Name: huggy2009
Abbey Road - The Beatles
Advantages: Some of the best songs ever
Disadvantages: The second half of the album isn't as good
This is one of the most iconic of the beatles albums, with the four guys crossing the pelican crossing on Abbey Road, the album cover is iconic.
The album has some of the Beatles greatest songs and allows all four members to contribute, it is widely accepted that by this time the band weren't functioning, so we do have segments which are clearly influenced by John and those by Paul and they don't meet perfectly.
The album is top heavy with an exceptional first half and then it gradually weakens but it is a 5 out of 5 album as it has some absolutely world class songs on it.
For me the best songs on this album are those by John and George, but the thing that ironically stands out is how tight the bands melodies are. Produced by George Martin, this is a stand out album full of invention, verve and a style which still sounds vital today.
Come Together - From the opening bar this song is heavy and an absolute classic, heavy bass, fantastic distorted Lennon vocal this led the band in a more mature direction and you can hear its influences on Lennon's later works as well as that of Wings. The song is superb, the lyrics are a mix of genius and ridiculousness but they are fun, the thing here is the tune which bangs out and would still put bands like Kasabian in their place (in the nicest possible way as they are a good band). This song is one of the Beatles greatest tunes and at just over 4 minutes it doesn't outstay its welcome either.
Something - Track 2 and another fantastic Beatles song which is up their with their greatest, with George Harrison on vocals this is a beautiful love song, fantastic harmonies, beautiful vocals and a really great backing track, I love this song, it is soft, gentle and utterly beguiling. It is a lovely contrast to Come Together but really shows the variety in this majestic band.
Maxwell's Silver Hammer - This is a silly song, its fun, utterly catchy with a great chorus and the kind of lyrical story which was popular at this time, it is a funny story but has a sinister edge as Maxwell keeps hitting people on the head with his silver hammer, it's a light hearted, comedic song about a serial killer, which is weird as you could play this to your kids but its got an incredibly weird, scary edge, with creepy carnival music occasionally heard in the background. So far this album has had three utterly different songs, if the next song were a bhangra based drum and bass track from the sixties I wouldn't be shocked at all. Paul takes vocals here.
Oh! Darling - This is kind of a throwback song to the old beatles, its rock and roll with harmonies, its gentle and doesn't rock your world but its good enough with lovely melodies and a strange guitar which is well ahead of its time.
Octopus's Garden - Country and Western from the boys here with Ringo getting a go on vocals singing about visiting an Octupus's garden, this is a nice song with good chorus, nice use of piano and guitar and as always Ringo does add something to the album. This is a silly song, but in form and substance is still pretty brilliant. The experimentation on this song is light years ahead of most of the era's music and I can hear elements of Supergrass in this song.
I want you (She's so Heavy) - Another awesome tune with majestic bass and guitars, this is moody and steps away from the bands usual melodies for a smokey, moody number with Paul growling about wanting somebody over cool organs, drums and bass. This is a wicked tune which just maintains the utterly contemporary feel of the album and its eclectic nature.
Here comes the sun - Another classic song, this is gorgeous, it has a light edge, George Harrison sings again and it is a beautiful optimistic tune which always makes me happy. The lyrics are beautiful, the arrangement stunning and again the album just keeps twisting and turning.
Because - Apparently the moog sound on this song was inspired by Beethoven's 'Moonlight Sonata' being played backwards, we then add in amazing vocal melodies by the boys, this is a weird song which builds and is so complex you have to really concentrate to appreciate it fully, in some senses the layers remind me of the Beach Boys, but this is utterly Beatles-Esque and not comparable in anything other than the clever melodies.
You never give me your money - A slower tune apparently based on a contract dispute with Apple, this is a soft, gentle kick in the balls for the record company, it is cutting but the melody and chorus are so even tempered you don't notice until you listen to it twice. The song goes off into something weird with a faster pace and it's a nice ragtime tune.
Sun King - The tune for this is really well known, its so relaxing with the guitars and a nice shifting cymbal, it is easy listening at its finest with 90 seconds of gentle chorus and instrumental, its not one of the best songs on the album but provides a nice interlude with some cool organs.
Mean Mr Mustard - This is another odd song, I think its John singing this as it doesn't sound like him, the song meanders with lots of musical styles and some good drums from Ringo but is mid album filler again (But then filler for the Beatles is greatest hits for most other bands!!!!)
Polythene Pam - Love Lennon's proper scouse accent on this one, slagging off Polythene Pam, the lads enjoy getting back to their roots. It's a jokey song with some great guitars but isn't memorable.
She came in through the bathroom window - This segues in nicely from the last song and Paul takes over vocals, there are some lovely vocal harmonies on this but its not a great song by any means. Although the chorus is very catchy and sticks in your head.
Golden Slumbers - Another track from Paul, this has the feel of a musical theatre number, the arrangement is nice, but it sounds more suited to something else. The song is nice enough, it's a sweet gentle song which Paul absolutely roars through, showcasing his vocal skills.
Carry That Weight - A nice chorus as this song segues in from the last, it's a decent enough song that builds in pace, I like this a lot, it's a nice gentle song which is quite memorable.
The End - This reminds me of the Muppets for some reason, the guys have a good old jam, with strange vocals and lots of freestyling but it finishes off a disappointing second half of the album in some style.
The album is available on Amazon.com for £7.99.
Summary: One of the greatest albums of any era