As some of you may or may not know, I don't like The Beatles. Recently, however, I've made it my goal to give them another shot. I intend to re-listen to their entire studio catalogue, and then make a decision on where I stand on them. I recently listened to the songs that haven't been on one of their studio albums (essentially Past Masters minus a few tracks). Here are my thoughts.
From Me to You (single), 1963
From Me to You is a light pop-rock song that fits in perfectly with the style of the early Beatles. A simple song thatís lyrics donít go past the concept of loving a girl. Itís so inoffensive that it hurts.
Itís B-side, Thank You Girl, is pretty much identical to From Me to You. It just feels so bland. It reminds me of SO MUCH early 60s pop-rock. At least itís short. Itís definitely the weaker of the two tracks here.
She Loves You (single), 1963
She Loves You is, simply put, a catchy pop single. In terms of music and lyrics, itís nothing special. It it, however, a very solid single. Itís inoffensive, but at the same time, itís practically impossible to hate.
Itís B-side, Iíll Get You, is nowhere near as fun as She Loves You, but itís still not that bad. Itís another short pop single that defines the early Beatles. Itís nothing special, but overall not that bad.
I Want to Hold Your Hand (single), 1963
I Want to Hold Your Hand is similar to She Loves You in that itís so catchy that itís impossible to truly hate. Itís just another fun pop single about being in love with a girl from The Beatles.
Itís B-side, This Boy, is actually better than I Want to Hold Your Hand. It sounds like theyíre actually experimenting with their sound. It feels less bubblegum than the first 5 songs Iíve listened to so far. It was actually pretty decent.
Komm, Gib Mir Deine Hand (single), 1964
Komm, Gib Mir Deine Hand, and itís B-side She Liebt Dich, are German re-recordings of I Want to Hold Your Hand and She Loves You, respectively. My review for both of these tracks is the same. They just reek of pointlessness and seem like cheap cash grabs.
Long Tall Sally EP, 1964
Long Tall Sally is a cover of Little Richard. Standing on its own, itís a rocking track, but unfortunately, thereís a certain feeling that just doesnít come through on The Beatlesí version when compared to the original.
I Call Your Name is yet another simple and repetitive song about falling in love with a girl. All I can say is meh.
Slow Down starts off rocking. This is just basic rock 'n roll, and there's something really great about listening to it. This is the best song that I've listened to so far (and that speaks for all the singles, not just the Long Tall Sally EP).
Matchbox is another rock 'n roll song. While it doesn't quite have the energy of Slow Down, it's still a pretty decent listen. Still though, there's nothing special at all about this song.
I Feel Fine (single), 1964
I Feel Fine is another fairly decent pop single. There has yet to be an amazing song, but this is a very solid track that shows the steady improvement of The Beatles.
It's B-side, She's a Woman, gets repetitive after a while. Thereís a little solo in the middle, but man, this song is BORING. This could have been 30 seconds shorter.
Bad Boy (from Beatles VI), 1965
Bad Boy has a sort of grittiness to it. Something raw, something powerful. Something that I could see coming from an early Stones record. This is a very, very good thing, and this is a very, very good track.
Yes It Is (from the Ticket to Ride single), 1965
Yes It Is starts out really neat. Itís got this sort of inverted, drone guitar effect, and that sounds really neat. That said, the song is meh overall. Itís not bad, itís just not that great.
Iím Down (from the Help! single), 1965
Iím Down makes up for any shortcomings it may have with the short little organ solo in the middle. This really is the best Beatles song that Iíve listened to so far. Itís just so rocking!
Day Tripper (single), 1965
Day Tripper is, once again, REALLY fluffy. I thought that by the Rubber Soul era these guys were supposed to show technical and creative brilliance. This just feels like everything else Iíve heard so far. Ugh.
The B-side, We Can Work It Out, is on the other hand, a really decent pop song. Itís technically better than Day Tripper, and itís also generally more fun to listen to. Easily the better of the two tracks here.
Paperback Writer (single), 1966
Paperback Writer is the first major Beatles song so far that I have legitimately loved. Itís so interesting to listen to. Itís radio friendly without being fluffy, but different enough to be really cool sounding.
Itís B-side, Rain, is another really brilliant song. The things I said about Paperback Writer are all applicable here, but somehow, it manages to do it all better. Itís got some grit to it, but it still keeps itís pop sensibilities. This is a very good song.
Lady Madonna (single), 1968
Lady Madonna is a boring song. There is really nothing about this song that keeps my interest. Itís not a bad song or anything like that, itís just a really boring one.
Itís B-side, The Inner Light, on the other hand, is a very interesting song. Itís got some very neat instrumentation to it, and thereís a real sign of experimentation going on here. This is the Beatles that Iíve always had a thing for. Toward the end, though, it starts to drag. Maybe this could do without the sitar interludes.
Hey Jude (single), 1968
Hey Jude. There is virtually nothing left to say about this song, good or bad, that hasnít already been said by someone else. I will just leave it at this. This is a very well done song.
Itís B-side, Revolution, is one of, if not the, hardest rocking track in the entire Beatles catalogue. This is another very, very good song. This, or Helter Skelter, is my favourite Beatles song, and one of the few Beatles songs that Iíve always loved.
Don't Let Me Down (from the Get Back Single), 1969
You know, everyone loves this song, but I just do not get it. Even as someone whoís never minded later Beatles, this song just draaaaaaaaaaags. Thereís really just nothing to it that screams out brilliance to me. That said, the song itself is OK.
The Ballad of John and Yoko (single), 1969
I've always thought that The Ballad of John and Yoko was a fun song. It does feel a touch out of place with the rest of the later Beatles catalog, but who cares! This is a fun song. Nothing more, nothing less.
I also like the B-side, Old Brown Shoe. It's another song that's decent, but isn't anything special overall. Not really much else to say about it.
You Know My Name (Look Up the Number) (from the Let It Be single), 1970
What the hell is wrong with this song? This sounds like a lot of the crap on The White Album *cough*Revolution9WildHoneyPie*cough*. Seriously, this song has no business being 4 and a half minutes. It's just really, really terrible.