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"The Beatles"

Jun 14, 2019

Revolver, the best of all?

Written by @JorgeDiaz from Electro Arpegio / 6 mins read

Summer of 1966, I think few were waiting to hear something like "Eleanor Rigby", "Taxman", "For No One", "I'm Only Sleeping", "I Want To Tell You" and the huge "Got To Get You Into My Life”, The Beatles left everyone amazed, there were those in the world who still had the idea that it was those innocent guys playing "She Loves You" and "Twist and Shout.” In fact, there were many who felt uncomfortable with the change. After definitively canceling their tours to concentrate on what any musician wants to concentrate on and make a way of life: to compose and be in the recording studio, the group's metamorphosis was great, serious and determined to demonstrate everything they were capable of. Yes, a worm that finally becomes a butterfly. Two brilliant minds (Lennon-McCartney) composing together to make impressive songs, and a solo mind (George Harrison) that made his way between those two giants to claim his place in history and be taken into account as a composer with the most great skills and capable of creating hits that would become part of the referents of the band. Even though the 3 previous albums ("Rubber Soul", "Help!" And "Beatles For Sale") are the bridge that somehow connects their evolution and prepares fans for something like Revolver, the differences surprise and highlight the love of the four from Liverpool for personal, spiritual and professional growth. Although the pop that characterized them in previous albums is present in Revolver, the band becomes once and for all a rock band. Everything in this album reflects maturity and a lot of attention to detail, you can see that they are dedicated and very concerned about shaking off the image of the past and delivering smart and well-finished songs. By then, the recording studios had improved their techniques and the benefit that the Fab Four and the other genius, George Martin, derived from that, put them at the head of the composers around the world. One of the things that most amaze many is the fact that for the sake of doing the artistically correct, they sacrificed guitars and drums in several themes. In Revolver, what matters is the artistic concept that was in the mind and inspiration of the band and as of that moment, it would not matter anymore. The discussion always causes annoyance, but I think it's worth it: is it the best The Beatles' album? Then comes Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band that is mentioned as their masterpiece. Which one do you prefer? What do you think? I recommend listening to both albums, close your eyes, feel everything that they transmit, not concentrate on a single theme, assimilate each album as a whole and then ... draw conclusions.

It has no waste

Open with "Taxman" is a total success. On the one hand, it is a recognition of the effort and the creative contribution of George Harrison for this album and, in addition, warns of the break with the past. That is for me the purpose of starting with this song, prepare us to listen to something we had never heard in them despite the brushstrokes of some issues on previous albums that already made us think about what we had to expect from Revolver. But as things would cause a shock anyway, decided to make it clear with "Taxman", an aggressive song, more acid style and distorted guitars with a sound that was not at all like the traditional songs of the band. The lyrics also leave the cliché of singing to love or heartbreak, find the girl of your dreams or seek a lawsuit with your rival in love, now the tax collector was talked about and, who does not hate this guy? What comes next, continues to amaze us to this day.

They were them, but without the instruments

I can imagine the surprised face when the next song "Eleanor Rigby" appears on the scene. A clear and excellently educated voice by Paul McCartney stands out above a double string quartet. And the guitars? And the battery? None of that and, anyway, the spirit of the band and their style to create and interpret was present. The same as the previous one, the song has a letter that takes off from what they had previously written and addresses a current theme for their time and with a deep social reflection.

They were already in psychedelia

For those who think that psychedelia takes over the way of composing of The Beatles, in the record Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band giving as an example the songs "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" and "Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite!" the show that Revolver is the first to address this style is the song "I'm Only Sleeping", these are actually the foundations of the psychedelia that would be installed in the next albums, that is, we cannot claim that in what is considered their masterpiece, they show something that we had not heard before. The record passes between genius and genius at the time of recording, from my point of view, the favorite of all my albums. Obviously, what would come next would be great and very complete; however, Revolver represents a work that, overall, has more value than the others. It is my opinion.

Why did not they do more of this?

Honestly, one of the things that leave me frustrated in the works after this album, is the fact of not finding anything like the song "Got To Get You Into My Life", it's a huge song that gets out of all the orthodoxy with which John Lennon and Paul McCartney composed throughout their career at The Beatles. A huge composition with metal music and a very different rhythm than what we are used to in other successes. I do not know why they did not continue to exploit this style of writing; I am sure that it would have enriched our musical heritage more. Despite this, I think this song is among the highlights of the decade in which The Beatles were together.
After all this, what do you think? Do you still think that there is a "The Fab Four's" album better than Revolver?