on 8 January 2016
Oh wow, hear the Beatles like you have never heard them before , like they are in your ear. I have to be honest I will always be a massive Beatles fan, and over the years have listened to the many arguments saying, you must not alter the past. Well I agree to a point. As long as the original version are always available then I am all for mixing the songs correctly, and on this set with a lot of love. Now of cause we have been treated to the 5.1 experience before on the Love CD, and also the remixing in Stereo of the yellow Submarine Songtrack.
On this set for the first time we are finally treated to a warm beautiful sound off the two track Beatles material (She Loves you, Twist and Shout, From me to you ect) all in either 5.1 or stereo, with the vocals placed carefully in the center of the mix, to say they sound is great is just and understatement.
The fist disc is a visual replica of the original No1, all remixed properly. Nothing added nothing taken away just placed correctly in the stereo picture instead of vocal s on one channel and instruments on the other, something that has bugged many of the early Beatles recording and for me disappointing the greatness of the music.Yes they sound the same no ridiculous booming base overtaking the mix, everything seems to be carefully placed in the Stereo picture.
All fans should remember the Beatles never intended the vocals to be place on the one channel, it was at the time the engineers decision, who really did not know what to do with stereo mixes. I have always felt opportunities were lost, the Mono versions were only available in an expensive box set, and the stereo versions which were widely available are sometimes (the first two albums are great examples) should have only been issued in MONO. Well until now when it been proved what can be done without damaging the original sound.
On this BLU-RAy the sound is amazing, Hey Bulldog is a stand out in thundering bass line and piano, drums blistering clear.Although the visuals are secondary for me the picture quality in the 35mm promos like Hello goodbye, Strawberry fields is amazing just breathtaking.
This set has a lot to offer, any fan the 3 disc version is the one to get, The audio CD contains all the vocal placed in the center, no longer do you get the wired vocal fade after the introduction of Eleanor Rigby, This finally shows what can be achieved without destroying the sound of the Beatles..
Back in 1994, Apple's Neil Aspinall said 'Anthology is a ten year project'. When '1' was released in 2000, many bemoaned the lack of a DVD of promo films to accompany that CD, though there was the belief such a thing would eventually be released as part of that plan. That anticipation has now been realised. The 2015 '1' project is available in seven different configurations, and whilst it's part of the deluxe set reviewed here, reviews on the CD can be read elsewhere. It's the videos everyone is interested in.
Until now, other than the 'Anthology' series, everyone has been able to watch a lot of what's here on line but not necessarily in its entirety and, for the most part, it's usually been a painful viewing experience; but no more. Not only have the films been fastidiously restored to 4K standard, each has a 5.1 surround audio mix too. And that's one reason why it's taken this long to come to fruition. When it comes to anything Fab Four related, it has to be perfect. Unfortunately for me, I don't have a 5.1 system so cannot comment on the sound regarding that. On top of the 50 videos, this deluxe package also includes a lavish 124 page book on each track, and an essay from Mark Ellen.
The first 27 are related to the songs on the '1' CD and some have had videos especially prepared for this, whilst the 23 on the second disc are a decent selection of tracks. However, though some songs might be duplicated on the first disc, the videos are completely different, and again, some have been made exclusively for this release editing in previously unused film. All the same, it's this second disc that will probably be the most interesting of the two. As if you needed any, both discs have 'extras' of Paul giving audio commentaries on 'Penny Lane', 'Hello Goodbye' and 'Hey Jude', whilst Ringo filmed introductions to those same three songs plus 'Get Back'. Disc 2 has a commentary by Paul on 'Strawberry Fields Forever' and a Ringo intro.
Albeit in black and white, when I watched the restored 'AHDN' film it looked as if it was made the previous week; much on here has a similar feel in that the restoration has removed all traces of scratching, jumping and the detritus that accumulates on film over time and each one is now very watchable. No wonder it's taken years to finish. What you see is the group's progression from nicely turned out boys (appearance did matter) to doing things their way, foibles and all. Strangely, only five of the 50 are live, on stage performances and it's good to hear 'From Me To You' without screaming – the Royal Variety Show wasn't the place for that.
'Twist And Shout' is unusual in that their positions on stage are reversed, whilst 'She Loves You' from Sweden grinds into the dirt with a well heeled Cuban boot the oft held view of some that the group weren't much live. The version of 'A Hard Day's Night' is the best on stage rendition of that song, 'Can't Buy Me Love' utilises a slightly different vocal, and the second 'I Feel Fine' is the one that had the Beatles making no attempt to mime to the music, which is why it was never originally shown. The BBC version of 'Words Of Love' combines footage of the boys with some clever animation. The non UK single of 'Eight Days A Week' (a strange choice for a single) was never performed either on stage or for television, so it's an amalgamation of footage from the '65 Shea Stadium show. On the other hand, 'Eleanor Rigby' is taken directly from the Yellow Submarine film.
Though not shown until a fortnight later, 'Please Please Me' was the second song performed on their first filmed appearance for the Ed Sullivan show. 'Rain' is seen in both colour and a newly created black and white edit performed straight to camera that hasn't been seen for 50 years, and try miming to backwards singing, whilst their most celebrated videos of both 'Penny Lane' and 'Strawberry Fields' are full of colour and no longer look 'washed out' (the tree in the latter is no longer there). To get some idea of what they might have looked like had they carried on touring into 1968, 'Revolution' is the teaser (the film itself bitch slaps any performance since - mimed or otherwise - by anyone on any song firmly back in its place), and 'Hey Jude' is an edit of two other performances to the one usually shown (it also has a different introduction). Look out for John's knowing look when the hula girl dances in front of him on 'Hello Goodbye'. By far the worst thing here, and one that probably unknown by many (including me), is a rather silly animation of 'Come Together', commissioned for the launch of thebeatles.com, but it is the first time it's been seen properly. The other side of that single, 'Something' is ironic in that though this was the final time all four collaborated on film, no two Beatles are shown together. It's the simplest of films and, watched retrospectively, shows how far apart they had now grown. Two videos many might not be familiar with are 'Get Back' and 'Don't Let Me Down', both collected to promote 'Let It Be...Naked' in 2003. 'Free As A Bird' and 'Real Love' are the videos from '94 and '95 but this time with improved quality. Not only that, but the former has a different George vocal and the latter different guitar and drums, and that's what rabid Beatles fans like.
As good as each one is, there is one, albeit minor, negative to this. Having three videos of 'Day Tripper' and 'Hello Goodbye' does seem a bit excessive. I'm sure another couple of live performances of something could have been found, as we know there is enough that exist. (Maybe Apple are planning a live release, or didn't want to impinge on the up and coming film documentary.) But it is what it is and Apple obviously had their reasons for including what they have. Included here is a Jukebox 1 and Jukebox 2 option that allows you to programme what you want to watch in any order. Grainy some of them might be, but that's what it was back then.
Has the wait for those elusive promo films (and more) been worth it? Whilst there a few bits and pieces we haven't seen before, enough of it has been, let's say, difficult to come by and certainly never commercially released before. That this package includes so many previously hard to see films makes it worth the admission price. If you have a Blu ray player that upscales to 4K (most do) and an appropriate television, with this most sumptuous collection of music videos, you're in for a visual (and audio) delight.
Buy it. It's the Beatles!
on 22 October 2000
All the Beatles No.1s from Love Me Do to The Long & Winding Road. You can't grumble about the quality of the songs or value for money - a single CD (and 79+ mins) with more tracks than the double Red album (1962-66).I just wonder what the motivation is behind this release. Maybe it's simply to provide a single disc career overview of the greatest pop band in history to those who don't want to invest in 2 double CDs. There will no doubt be those that will complain that no Beatles hits package is complete without Strawberry Fields Forever. But this is a compilation of all of the Beatles' US and UK No.1 hits and unfortunately that song "only" reached No.2 in the UK. The Billboard Hot 100 in the US is compiled from a combination of sales and airplay, and though Penny Lane (the double A flip-side) reached No.1, Strawberry Fields only got enough radio play to reach No.8. I suppose they could have used a different criterion to select their greatest hits, but with so many hits to choose from they couldn't help but exclude some favourites (Please Please Me, Twist & Shout, In My Life, and there is not a single song from from Sgt. Peppers). Still, this is the first time that such classics as She Loves You, Yesterday, Help!, Hey Jude, Get Back and Let It Be have all appeared on the same album. So if you don't own a Beatles album, this is the place to start, and it makes a great gift for anyone who hasn't updated their scratched vinyl records.
on 13 December 2015
WHOA!! THESE TAKE ME BACK, CLASSIC FILM SHORTS FEATURING THE LADS PROMOTING THEIR HITS AS THEY CAME OUT, REALLY THE START OF THE POP VIDEO THAT WAS TO BECOME THE NORM MUCH LATER ON, I REMEMBER SEEING SOME OF THESE ON A FORM OF JUKEBOX THAT HAD LARGE SCREEN, YOU PUT IN YOUR MONEY, PICKED THE SINGLE AND YOUR CHOICE PERFORMED IN FRONT OF YOU AROUND, THE MID 60s I BELIVE, WELL THEY`VE RESTORED THEM, ADDED A SPRINKLE OF STAR DUST, NOT THAT THE LADS NEEDED IT , THEY HAD PLENTY OF THEIR OWN, ITS ALL HERE IN THEIR PRIME ,JUST FOUR LADS ENJOYING THEIR DAYS IN THE SUN, LEAVING US TO SOAK UP THE MAGIC GENIUS THAT WOULD CHANGE MUSIC & FASHION, BEATLES FOR EVER, YEAH, YEAH, YEAH.
on 11 October 2005
well i would never have dreamed when i first heard the beatles in 1962 at the tender age of 9 that i would still be listening to them today, and they sound just as fresh and exciting to me as they did then! in those days everything was literally "flavour of the month". i'm pleased the younger generations of music fans appreciate these simple works of genius still too. i don't know anyone who doesn't like beatles music, proving good things cut across all barriers. i expect they'll still be playing beatles music in 500 years time! this album is a great clean collection of songs guaranteed to hook the uninitiated into a lifetime appreciation of beatles music. i must have heard these a thousand times and still find them refreshing. definitely a must have.
on 17 February 2005
Bloody marvellous. Even though I only listen from "Day Tripper" onwards, I still appreciate the cultural impact of those simple and wonderfully melodious first few singles. "We Can Work It Out" and "The Long and Winding Road" are my personal favourites. Even if you have all the albums, this is worth getting also for the well presented booklet showcasing all their singles from the four corners of the globe.
on 5 December 2015
This is sensational.The audiophile quality of this pressing is,pun intended,electric. The music has the intense sparkle and immediacy it must have had for its first listeners. From the delicious swinging tempo of Love me do to the cinematic melodrama of The long and winding road,which has never sounded better,this is a revelation. Buy it with confidence and a smile.
on 26 December 2015
Bought this is as a gift and while very happy with the picture quality and audio, the DVD I received is in NTSC format, not PAL!
Fortunately the recipient (on Christmas Day) has a dual format player so it is not a wasted gift but nowhere I can see on Amazon's Product Description does it mention what format it is available in, nor does it give you the choice.
As I'm ordering in the UK and receiving shipment from Amazon's E.U. Operation, I would expect PAL format as this is the region standard.
If it were not for the recipient's DVD player, I could have been embarrassed on Christmas Day! Poor show, Amazon!
Beatles fans take their love for the Fab Four very seriously, as evidenced by some of the disappointment espoused by some enthusiastic fans over this compilation. I think we can all agree that this is not the ultimate Beatles CD, but - my gosh - you get 27 of the band's most familiar songs crammed on to one single CD. Even if you have all of the essential Beatles CDs already, it's nice to have such a great one-CD collection. I would much rather take this little jewel case out to my car than to try and put together a single disc of my own, and this has better sound than any disc I could make myself on my computer. I'm a big fan but not an expert on the Beatles, so I can't comment on the issue of stereo mastering versus the original mono versions of the earliest hits - to my ears, all of these songs sound great on this CD. I also won't quibble over what tracks got excluded. This is a collection of #1 hits, not a greatest hits collection. These are the songs that hit #1 on the charts of either the UK (Record Retailer) and/or the US (Billboard). Apparently, even such a seemingly straightforward approach to choosing the tracks allows room for debate - it apparently comes down to what your definition of "#1 hit" should really be. In the end, the fact that the three surviving Beatles (now, sadly, only two) authorized this compilation is more than enough for me to accept it with open arms (and ears).
It's easy to get lost in the enjoyment of such stellar individual songs, but when you take a step back you realize that this CD affords you some interesting insight into the evolution of the band over the course of eight years. The early songs, while fantastic, are actually not that musically complicated. By the time you get to the tenth track, Yesterday, you begin to get a wonderful sense of how the Beatles began to innovate and push the boundaries of rock and roll. They redefined music in their own image, and in the final five years of their existence they established a legacy no band will ever equal - they became the greatest band the world will ever know. If you want to really see what stereo can mean, there is still no better teacher than Yellow Submarine or the songs from Sgt. Pepper (none of which, rather ironically, are included on this compilation). I still marvel at the amazing variety of music the band released in its later years - All You Need Is Love, Lady Madonna, Hey Jude, Get Back, Something (the only George Harrison specialty on this CD), Come Together, Let It Be. What can one say about the amazing variety to be heard in such high-quality songs? Just compare the first and last track on this album; Love Me Do and The Long and Winding Road could hardly be more different, yet they are both vintage Beatles classics.
This CD was in a certain sense unnecessary, especially for decades-long Beatles fans, yet look what it accomplished. It immediately jumped to the top of sales charts and inspired yet another grand awakening among the music-listening population of Beatlesmania. Young people had the chance and the means to discover the Beatles on their own; while that experience will never compare to the craziness and excitement of Beatlesmania in its original form, it is still important. Decades after their breakup, the Beatles were #1 once again, and that is just one of many reasons why I love this 27-hit compilation CD.
on 18 December 2008
Never owned any Beatles records, so I decided to get this one. One word - fantastic. For those who don't own Beatles records, this is the perfect starting point. If you love it - I'm sure you will - then you'll end up buying more Beatles CDs. How can nobody buy this? Listening to this is the perfect lesson on how music should be made - and it makes you cry that you realise bands like them are rarely around these days, due to the charts being packed full of (c)rap and RnB. Get it, because the Beatles are quite simply the greatest thing to happen to music.