Sunday, August 28, 2011

Love Songs

Having charted high with a grab-bag double album of Beatle rockers, Rock and Roll Music in 1976, Capitol compiled what amounts to the former album's flip side the following year, a two-LP collection of Beatle ballads. The 25-song set covers just about the entire heyday of the band. However, grouping them one after another was not a good idea. The Beatles were about balance, about the four personalities interacting, editing and enhancing each other -- and their music reflected that balance even as it grew wilder and more eclectic. This package tilts the balance much too heavily in one direction, and it gives the illusion of making even this endlessly inventive band sound like something that it was not: sentimental and predictable.

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