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Friday, December 7, 2012

THE RED ALBUM - sides three and four

SIDE THREE

Help! - Though the Red Album bore the Apple label, it was still distributed by EMI's various affiliates worldwide.  Thus, the 1973 Capitol version in the US featured a bit of Ken Thorne's "James Bond" theme music from the film soundtrack, just like the original American Help! album had, before the Beatles launched into the title tune.  This was eventually eliminated in reissues.

You've Got to Hide Your Love Away - A well-known track from the film.

We Can Work It Out - The first of eight tracks from the Rubber Soul sessions, the most highly-represented period on the Red and Blue albums.  This song was on a double A-sided single, going to number one in the US.

Day Tripper - The other half of the double A-sided single.  This side went to number one in the UK.

Drive My Car - The opening track of Rubber Soul.

Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown) - A well-loved Rubber Soul track.

Nowhere Man - Also from Rubber Soul.  In the US, Capitol released this song as a single, peaking at number three.

SIDE FOUR

Michelle - The run of Rubber Soul tracks continues.

In My Life - Yup, you guessed it - from Rubber Soul.

Girl - The final Rubber Soul track.

Paperback Writer - A single from the Revolver sessions, released months ahead of that album.

Eleanor Rigby - Simultaneously released on the album Revolver and on a double A-sided single.  It went to number one in the UK.

Yellow Submarine - The other half of the double A-sided single, also appearing on the album Revolver.  This side was the hit in the US, but it peaked at number two.  Ringo sings the lead vocal, trumping George, who is shut out on this collection.

As was the case with side two, there are only six songs on side four.  Once again, this could have been rectified with a great B-side such as I'm Down or Rain, or a familiar album track from Revolver like Taxman, which would have given poor George some well-deserved love.

A couple of extra tracks would have also increased the value of the package for fans.  The four sides of the album go by very quickly, with only Ticket to Ride exceeding three minutes in length.  But overall, the Red Album is a brilliant look at the first half of the Beatles' career.  It almost made A Collection of Beatles Oldies redundant, since every track from that earlier package (minus the bonus track Bad Boy) now appeared on this new album.

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