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A showcase for a talent previously overshadowed
on 11 April 2003
Most of the material that appears on this album was written by George Harrison whilst The Beatles were still together, but was recorded after their demise, at a time where George found himself uniquely placed to express himself to the utmost, and boy did he do it brilliantly.
With the production skills of the legendary Phil Spector and the likes of Eric Clapton (and even a very young Phil Collins) on hand to lend expert assistance, this album could have ranked alongside the multitude of other worthy albums of the time... however, what set this particular album apart from the rest is the sheer quantity and variety of tracks that George had accumulated over the years, and unleashed in one epic volume which rivals even the best Beatles albums.
This remastered and extended anniversary edition of the album is a much needed and welcome update of a bona fide classic release and is far better than the previous incarnation on CD. The extra tracks are not particularly 'essential', especially the new version of 'My Sweet Lord', which was probably better left alone, and like the original, the 'jam session' tracks are still very much extraneous and pretty pointless. This would count against the album if it wasn't for the fact that the album stands as a monumental achievement without them, and contains multiple tracks that are infinitely listenable. Ranging from the raging rock of the 'Derek and the Dominoes-esque' "Wah-Wah" to the plaintive "Let It Roll" and the amazing "Beware of Darkness", it is hard to fault throughout.
I strongly recommend to anyone whose opinion of George Harrison's solo recordings is based entirely upon 'My Sweet Lord' or even the 'Cloud Nine' album to have a listen to this album and be prepared to be impressed. Harrison's talent as a songwriter became evident in the latter days of the Beatles era, but even then he was overshadowed (and squandered) by Lennon and MacCartney... this album is testimony to and proof of the fact that, in his own right, George Harrison was truly one of the greats in rock history.