Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The Beatles "Magical Mystery Tour" (1967)

The U.S. version of the soundtrack for the Beatles' ill-fated British television special embellished the six songs that were found on the British Magical Mystery Tour double EP with five other cuts from their 1967 singles. (The CD version of the record has now been standardized worldwide as the 11 tracks found on the American version.) The psychedelic sound is very much in the vein of Sgt. Pepper, and even spacier in parts (especially the sound collages of "I Am the Walrus"). Unlike Sgt. Pepper, there's no vague overall conceptual/thematic unity to the material, which has made Magical Mystery Tour suffer slightly in comparison. Still, the music is mostly great, and "Penny Lane," "Strawberry Fields Forever," "All You Need Is Love," and "Hello Goodbye" were all huge, glorious, and innovative singles. The ballad "The Fool on the Hill," though only a part of the Magical Mystery Tour soundtrack, is also one of the most popular Beatle tunes from the era.


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