My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Click Image for larger version – Clipped from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/With_the_Beatles
Brief Background: With the Beatles was recorded from July to October 1963, and was released in November of that year. The album is the second from The Beatles and was released in the UK, Canada (as Beatlemania! With the Beatles) and Australia.This is only the second ever album to sell a million copies in the UK. Songs from this album in the US were released on Meet the Beatles! and The Beatles’ Second Album.
What I liked: I could probably list each song in this album separately and tell you what I like about each, but I’ll give you some of the highlights:
Plus we get the first George Harrison song, “Don’t Bother Me”. And lets settle this once and for all… Ringo is a pretty fine drummer as evidenced by this recording.
What I Didn’t Like: Of the early albums, I think the Please Please Me is a much better album and I’m a bit sore over that being passed up for this one. I really like the energy, earnestness and spontaneity of that album. Plus I would even venture to say there is a bit of a formula developing here… 14 songs, Lennon screaming his voice out on the last song. It’s just that if the Beatles ever lagged early on, it is with this sophomore album. I just doesn’t excite me and although I listen to most of their albums straight through, I would certainly skip some here.
My Overall Thoughts: It’s a damn fine album, it’s just never been one of my favorites from them, and when listening to this album I don’t hear it with fresh ears or “excited and knowing” ears which lowers my enjoyment. And yes I do feel as though I’m contradicting myself a little bit in this post, but somehow everything I’ve written still feels true.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? I think any Beatles album could be (and should be?) on this list and this is no exception.
Side Note: Stay away from the stereo versions of the these first couple albums. While listening to this in the car, the vocals were panned all of the way to the right speaker which really bothered me.
Rating (Out of 5): 4
Amazon Review (Out of 5):4.5
Is this my first time hearing this album? No (7/38)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 81%