Monday, March 10, 2014

Music Review - The Beatles - Let It Be

Let It Be is possibly my least favorite Beatles album, though that didn't stop me from buying Let It Be...Naked a few years ago in the hopes that removing all the superfluous orchestrations (not added by their longtime producer George Martin) would increase their appeal. It didn't.

At this point in their existence the members of the band were under immense tensions. In an attempt to recapture the magic and kinsman ship of their early years the band decided to shed all the exotic trappings and studio gizmodery of their recent albums and get back to their roots, writing songs together they way they used to. They unwisely allowed the proceedings to be filmed as material for a future film. The existence of cameras only added to the interpersonal tensions and the band flew apart. As I a result they wrote, I feel, some fairly weak songs. Sure, songs like "Two of Us" and "Dig A Pony" and "I Me Mine" are fine songs but they are simple, almost immature.

"Across the Universe" is one of the better songs, though it depresses me now with it's hopeless chorus of "Nothing's gonna change my world." Everyone seems to like "Let It Be" but to my ears it sounds like "I'd like to buy the world a Coke" though with slightly better musicianship and compares to "Hey Jude" in terms of yawn inducing repetition. The album ebbs further with unripened songs like "One After 909" and "I've Got A Feeling."

As a youngin' I really liked "The Long and Winding Road" but I've since accumulated enough musical experience to wince at the over-the-top cheesy strings and gossamer choir lacquered on by Phil Spector. While the "...Naked" version is an improvement it's incomplete. At least the wisely end the album with "Get Back," the strongest song of the bunch but still a mere wisp compared to their best.

To their credit The Beatles knew that this was a failed experiment and shelved the album, not intending to release it. It was only after their official breakup that the record company dusted off the tapes and did their best to make a few more bucks off the backs of these blokes.

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