THE BEATLES – Abbey Road [3 SHM-CD Super Deluxe Edition Box Set] (2019)
Today is being released in Japan this 3 SHM-CD Super Deluxe Edition Box Set of THE BEATLES final masterpiece “Abbey Road”. This is the first time “Abbey Road” has been remixed and presented with additional session recordings and demos. The new stereo album mix, sourced directly from the original session tapes was done by Giles Martin, guided by the album’s original stereo mix supervised by his father, George Martin.
Abbey Road’s Super Deluxe box set presents 40 tracks – including “The Long One” Trial Edit & Mix for the album’s epic Side 2 medley – on three SHM-CD and one Blu-ray disc (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1).
Even by Beatles standards, “Abbey Road” has always been an album full of mysteries. How could the world’s most beloved band make their sunniest, warmest, most charming music while they were in the middle of breaking up?
How did John, Paul, George and Ringo come together to drop their all-time biggest crowd-pleaser, while gearing up to go their separate ways? The eternal mysteries of Abbey Road only get deeper as you explore the revelatory new Super Deluxe Edition, released on the album’s 50th anniversary.
“Abbey Road” has always represented a historic peak of pop invention and perfection. To this day, it remains their biggest seller.
Giles Martin and Sam Okell have done a new mix in stereo, which does wonders for moments like the three-way guitar duel in “The End,” with Paul, George and John trading off solos live on the studio floor.
“Abbey Road” has always been cherished by Ringophiles, as an eight-track recording that lets Ringo’s toms finally boom the way he always wanted. He hits home all over this new mix — he also croons a countrified “Octopus’ Garden.”
The remix highlights hidden details like the girl-group handclaps that sneak into the guitar break of “Here Comes The Sun,” or the bells, chirps, and splashes that cue “Sun King.” There’s a raw blues romp through “Come Together.”
In these 23 outtakes and demos, you hear a band in the zone, knowing exactly what they want to do, working hard to finesse the details, even the ones only they’ll notice. They’re playful, like when John messes with the lyrics of “Mean Mr. Mustard”. But it’s four confident men, determined to show off for the world — and more importantly, for each other.
There’s a fantastic alternate version of “I Want You (She’s So Heavy)” from Trident Studios in London, where the lads get interrupted by angry complaints about noise from the neighbors. John politely agrees to turn down the volume, after one last take. Then he tells the band, “Last chance to be loud!”
We find also a poignant outtake of “The Ballad of John and Yoko” — just John on guitar and Paul on drums, while the other two are out of town. John quips, “A bit faster, Ringo.” Paul replies, “Okay, George!” It’s a touching joke to overhear. They’re still in love with this band of theirs.
Paul shines in his demo of “Goodbye,” a fetchingly flirty ditty he gave away as a hit to his protege Mary Hopkins. It’s Paul in his most coquettish upper-register voice, reminiscent of how he sang “Can you take me back where I came from?” on the White Album.
There are three takes of “Her Majesty.” An unexpected delight: George Martin’s isolated orchestration from “Something.” You’ve heard these strings all your life, in the background, but now you can revel in details like the Brian Wilson-style Pet Sounds pizzicato.
As for the album’s dottiest gaffe, “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer,” maybe you were hoping Take 12 might reveal new layers of nuance and meaning? Sorry — get ready to have a clang-clang dropped on your dreams. It’s hard not to suspect Paul drove them through so many takes just to piss them off.
The Sgt. Pepper and White Album reissue sets were packed with mind-blowing experiments and jams, but this 50th anniversary Super Deluxe Edition of “Abbey Road” is considerably more focused. There’s ‘true’ songs by the fantastic four, real alternate takes plenty of magic.
The sound quality is simply awesome.
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01. Come Together
03. Maxwell’s Silver Hammer
04. Oh! Darling
05. Octopus’s Garden
06. I Want You (She’s So Heavy)
07. Here Comes The Sun
09. You Never Give Me Your Money
10. Sun King
11. Mean Mr Mustard
12. Polythene Pam
13. She Came In Through The Bathroom Window
14. Golden Slumbers
15. Carry That Weight
16. The End
17. Her Majesty
01. I Want You (She’s So Heavy) (Trident Session & Reduction Mix)
02. Goodbye (Home Demo)
03. Something (Studio Demo)
04. The Ballad Of John And Yoko (Take 7)
05. Old Brown Shoe (Take 2)
06. Oh! Darling (Take 4)
07. Octopus’s Garden (Take 9)
08. You Never Give Me Your Money (Take 36)
09. Her Majesty (Takes 1-3)
10. Golden Slumbers / Carry That Weight (Takes 1-3 / Medley)
11. Here Comes The Sun (Take 9)
12. Maxwell’s Silver Hammer (Take 12)
01. Come Together (Take 5)
02. The End (Take 3)
03. Come And Get It (Studio Demo)
04. Sun King (Take 20)
05. Mean Mr. Mustard (Take 20)
06. Polythene Pam (Take 27)
07. She Came In Through The Bathroom Window (Take 27)
08. Because (Take 1 / Instrumental)
09. The Long One
10. Something (Take 39 / Instrumental / Strings Only)
11. Golden Slumbers / Carry That Weight (Take 17)