Anthology Volume 1
First Appeared in The Music Box, March/April 1996, Volume 3, #2
Written by John Metzger
At long last, the Apple/Capitol vaults have opened. Music lovers and fans of The Beatles alike will find Anthology Volume 1 to be a fascinating insight into the world's greatest studio band. On the other hand, casual fans are likely to be bored. The two-disc set opens with the overproduced, Electric Light Orchestra-induced, step backwards Free as a Bird, before it jump to the first recording made by The Quarry Men. It's a rare window that opens to the past and shows how inexperienced the group was. It really sounds as if the musicians are just beginning to learn their respective instruments, and, compared with some of the later material, it shows how far and fast they progressed.
There are plenty of unreleased and alternate takes contained on Anthology Volume 1, and the set also boasts a few raw, live cuts. One After 909 sheds light on the songwriting process with three snippets of the work-in-progress, followed by the completed track from 1963 — long before its eventual, re-recorded release on Let It Be. I'll Be Back is another example of how good The Beatles was at finding just the right sound and feel for a tune. Again, there are two versions that were recorded just moments apart in two different time signatures. The second version is played nearly perfectly. The Beatles truly was the best at what it did, largely because it always kept an open mind and drew from every experience it had. The results were some of the finest sounds ever recorded. ½
Anthology Volume 1 is available from
Barnes & Noble. To order, Click Here!
1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 1996 The Music Box