Saturday, October 29, 2022

The Beatles - Between The Lines

The Beatles - Between The Lines

(a soniclovenoize reimagining)



Side A:
1.  Let ‘Em In
2.  Crackerbox Palace
3.  Silly Love Songs
4.  Cookin’ In The Kitchen of Love
5.  Warm and Beautiful

Side B:
6.  See Yourself
7.  San Ferry Anne
8.  Beautiful Girl/Dear One
9.  Beware My Love
10. Tennessee


Hey folks.  Sorry about my absence…  A mix of being busy at work, a break-up, depression, etc etc etc.  I’ll try to “get back up on the horse” and drop some soniclovenoize reconstructions and reimaginings, starting with one that I think will be fairly unexpected and possibly exciting
for some (and loathed by others!).  I know long ago I said I would never do this, but during the pandemic (I had assembled this in November 2020, actually) I buckled down and made some Albums That Never Were I never expected to!  And you know what?  I actually really liked this one!  

If you couldn’t figure it out by the tracklist, this is an album “re-imagining” that postulates “What if The Beatles never broke up?” and is a part of my previous series of similar albums, including Instant Karma!, Imagine Clouds Dripping, Living In The Material World, Band On The Run, Goodnight Vienna and Skywriting By Word of Mouth.  This theoretical album– called Between The Lines (the tentative title of Lennon’s follow-up to Rock and Roll that was scrapped after being domesticated in 1975)-- encompasses The Beatles solo material spanning 1975 and 1976, and would have been theoretically released in fall 1976.  

As with my previous Beatles 70s Albums, I will adhere to three rules, although there are some slight modifications for these albums that follow Lennon’s real-life domestication and retirement:
1)  One album is represented per year, culled from tracks each Beatle recorded that year; this rule is revised so that one album spans two years instead of one.  Not only will this accommodate a lack of new material from some of the Beatles during this time, it will also force the outcome to be of better quality.  
2)  Generally speaking, to include five Lennon songs, five McCartney songs, three Harrison songs and one Ringo song; this rule is revised to presume that Lennon largely retired from The Beatles, occasionally contributing as a studio musician but leaving most of the heavy lifting for
Paul and George.   
3)  The chosen songs must be Beatle-esque in nature; we will attempt to avoid the idiosyncratic musical tangents each Beatle pursued in the 70s and vie for the solo songs that would have been most likely recorded by The Beatles (i.e. not vetoed by the rest of the band).
4)  The songs must flow together and make a unified album that shares a specific tone.

Between The Lines collects the highlights from Paul’s Wings at the Speed of Sound, George’s Thirty-Three and a Third, Ringo’s Rotogravure and, well, the six solo Lennon demos that date from his early Dakota era, approximately simultaneous to the aforementioned albums.  Both sides of the  re-imagining are edited to be two continuous sides of music.  The cover is taken from a Miro painting that somehow evokes the feel of this curious little album.  

Side A begins with my own unique edit of “Let ‘Em In”, which replicates the very rare original radio edit, only released as a promo disc; this is significant because that is the version I grew up listening to on the radio, and it is otherwise lost to time–and the unnecessarily long and repetitive album version.  This is followed by George’s classic “Crackerbox Palace”, which seems to somehow fit seamlessly before “Silly Love Songs”; like “Let ‘Em In”, this is my own unique ‘single edit’ since the song is likewise unnecessarily long.  Next is Ringo’s token song, written by John, “Cookin’ In The Kitchen of Love”, with the side closing with Paul’s ballad “Warm and Beautiful.”   Side B begins with George’s “See Yourself”, followed by Paul’s “San Ferry Anne”.  Next is a massive Paul-esque medley of George’s “Beautiful Girl” and Paul’s “Beware My Love”, using a brief bit of George’s “Dear One” to bridge the songs.  I couldn’t not have a John song, so concluding is the voice of our old friend: my own custom edit of “Tennessee”; although a Lennon home demo would sound drastically different from Paul & George ‘s studio output at this time, I believe this song works here as a closing piano solo.  

So sit back and imagine, if you will, an alternate timeline…
Although The Beatles went on an indefinite hiatus following the short 1974 tour for their hit album Goodnight Vienna, all four remained friendly, although not musically active with each other.  Paul took the opportunity to perform a solo tour (featuring wife Linda and his old friend Denny Lane as accompaniment) playing stripped down selections of his Beatles favorites from the last fifteen years.  George released a solo album Extra Texture, which had a lukewarm response despite featuring a moderate hit “You” (a duet with Ronnie Spector of The Ronnettes).  Ringo continued acting, building his filmography to include the role as The Pope in Listztomania, the voice of God in Monty Python and The Holy Grail and Uncle Ernie in the film adaptation of The Who’s Tommy.  John chose to stay home with his wife Yoko Ono and newborn Sean.  But the release of The Beatles’ Live at Madison Square Garden in late 1975 renewed some interest in the group continuing as a studio band, much like their late-60s era.  

Gradually, three of the four Beatles found themselves in each other's periphery and began plotting a new album, to be begun in early 1976.  John was only able to casually commit to the album, as he was no longer interested in living the rock star life.  While making only scant appearances on rhythm guitar and some backing vocals (although he distinctly took the lead for Ringo’s contribution to the album), a question emerged in the fans’ collective mind: is it really a Beatles album without John?  Regardless, a Paul-and-George -driven quartet released Between The Lines in October 1976, promoted only with a handful of live television  performances.  Most notable was their performance of “Let ‘Em In” on Saturday Night Live, in which Chevy Chase guested on a marching-band snare, prompting John Lennon to lead the entire show’s cast in a march outside and around Rockefeller Plaza.  

The moderate success of the double A-side single of “Silly Love Songs” and “Crackerbox Palace” encouraged the group to plan a follow-up in this short-lived and strange era of the band, and broad talks were made to reconvene in a year or so to see what the trio (and hopefully quartet) could muster…  


 

Sources used:
Paul McCartney & Wings - Wings at The Speed of Sound (2014 Remaster)
George Harrison - The Dark Horse Years 1976-1992
John Lennon - Between The Lines (2006 bootleg)
Ringo Starr - Ringo's Rotogravure (2009 Rhino Remaster)


 flac --> wav --> editing in SONAR Pro and Goldwave --> flac encoding via TLH lv8
*md5, artwork and tracknotes included

47 comments:

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    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, I'm probably an idiot but for the life of me I cannot get this m p 3page to load. tried copy and paste tried typing it out, just keeps telling me the page isn't valid. Am I missing a trick? Or could you email me the link or file directly? I'm so sorry for the trouble. I'm a HUGE fan of your work and I hate to miss one. Thanks!

      Delete
    2. Awesome! I love this particular series of what-ifs. Happy Christmas!

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  2. los
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    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can not get this to work....any chance of a new link?

      Cheers
      Stephen

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  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. https://media.tenor.com/Uymz4ZdlitUAAAAC/welcome-back-kotter-dance.gif

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  5. There's no Beatles sounding music after the Beatles save for George Harrison's stuff and Ringo's "We were just out of Liverpool" garbage. With your limitations, there's plenty of great post-Fab stuff.. I'll give you mine if you wish..

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    1. I thought that too... But yet, imo, when you assemble this specific collection of sopping together, it forms a real specific vibe. Is this vibe The Beatles 1963-1970? No, of course not. But it's The Beatles 1976. THAT I think is the point of this, if that makes any sense.

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    2. Tough task no doubt. My 80 minutes or less given the limits of a CD tends to be early 70's. Some from early 80s would be "Stranglehold" from Paulie, "You Never Know" - Ringo from the "Curly Sue" soundtrack, George Martin's version of "Grow Old With Me, and "I'm Losing You" with Cheap Trick...

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  6. Be a cool cat and support this blog by getting a cool Between The Lines shirt. Impress (or most likely confuse) your music nerd friends with an Album That Never Was band shirt!

    https://www.etsy.com/listing/1335475571/the-beatles-between-the-lines-album

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  7. OMG, THE TIMELINE CONTINUES!!!

    Also, no non album songs put as singles this time? 🤔

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    1. By this point in making 70's Beatle albums out of what was most Beatlelike of their solo works, I figure there was juuuust enough to assemble this album as it was :)

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  8. It's good to have you back, Sonic!

    Looks very interesting, I'll have to take a look and a listen to it! Should be a pretty interesting 1977 album on the works, seen as some of the best music from the Dakota years dates back to '77. That, added to the bulk of London Town...

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    1. I'm trying to find the hint for the next album, where is it exactly?

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    2. Do you mean the next album in this timeline, or the next album Sonic posts? LOL

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    3. @Omega
      Regrettably, I did not drop the hint as I had usually done in these. I appreciate that you noticed that though.

      The next one will be sometime in 2023. Still needs a finishing touch.

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  9. Yea Sonic... should be good fun thank you!

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  10. Hi Sonic. I hope you are feeling better soon. When my interest in music wanes, it's a sure sign of a dark period. Which is why I say a massive Thank You for this blog. It really is uplifting I hope people make their appreciation known. May you feel the creative flow again soon.

    To quote Van Morrison " Don't let the bastard's grind you down"

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  11. Thanks, and glad you are back and safe!

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  12. hey, welcome back. the thought and care of your constructions is really impressive and appreciated. thanks

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  13. Hi Sonic. Great to see you back. I seem to remember seeing you post on a forum a while back that you'd created an imaginary 3rd Olivia Tremor Control using Sunshine Fix and Circulatory System tracks. This was something I did myself, but I'd love to see your tracklisting, even if you don't share the album itself on this site. Apparently there is a real 3rd OTC album that has been in the works for years but don't know if it will ever come out.

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    1. Ah yes! Well observed and remembered!

      Long story short-- I've done a few cuts of that, but am never truly satisfied. But I don't think I'd ever post a 3rd Olivia Tremor Control album, because of my extreme reverence for that band, and the fact that they are just average folks making amazing music; I couldn't in good conscious post something like that, if that makes much sense (I really don't think the Lennon estate or Paul is losing much $ from this, but I ain't gonna do that to indie artists just tryin to get by). If they have to crowd fund just to literally put out a vinyl re-issue, then I'm not going to disrespect them like that. Know what I mean?

      Point of fact, I'm facebook friends with some of those guys, and in particular the bassist John has made posts about how there's like hundreds of thousands of youtube plays of Black Foliage, and sort of implored that it would be nice if every one of those folks actually bought the record please. And he does have a point, you know? If only because Black Foliage is LITERALLY one of the greatest albums made in the 1990s.

      BTW the actual real-life third Olivia Tremor Control album has got to be like 98% finished. Their drummer/sound engineer Derek mastered one of my bands' EPs back in 2012, and he told me back then it was almost nearly complete, and they were at the sequencing stage. That was *before* Bill passed away. And then the band got together and did more recording and mixing with Robert Schneider in the studio... That was pre-pandemic, maybe 2018? I'd have to look it up.

      Sorry about the rant, but that's what happens when you bring up Olivia Tremor Control on my blog!

      Delete
  14. Cual es el codogo de cifrado que pide MEGA ??????????, Gracias !!!!

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  15. Thank you very much for another great album!

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  16. Hi Sonic! So glad to see you post another re-imagination. Hope everything is better now. Music can heal all wounds.

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  17. Good to see you back Sonic, sorry to hear that you have had a rough time, I was worried for you and kept checking in. Glad you're getting back on the horse & look forward to checking out your latest offering (thanks for that too) and any future ones that you may bless us with.
    Take it easy on yourself and stay safe.

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  18. Hi! Always great to see you posting. The mono and stereo radio promo edits of "Let 'Em In" are available on RMW's 2012 The Paul McCartney Single Collection 1971-1990. Let me know if you have trouble locating a copy...

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  20. Welcome back. Sorry to hear about all the badness... seems like a lot of people went through some very tough times recently. Your "Machina" and "Dream Factory" reimaginings are on constant rotation here. You do excellent work!

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  21. Replies
    1. https://we.tl/t-fN03lrnOjJ

      Prendre plaisir! :)

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    2. I'm confused as to how to download this. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

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  22. Link is expired - would love a re-up!

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  23. Welcome back! It's been a while since I've checked on this blog! I can't believe I haven't heard Tennessee before.

    And I can't wait for a Beatles 1980 double album! ^_^

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  24. Superb work Sonic. Yet, can you help me understand something?

    1. You say that you changed the rules to allow pulling songs from two consecutive years in order to be able to make the best possible album.
    2. But then you only took songs from George´s 1976 album, ignoring his 1975 output completely, seemingly ignoring the rule change. So, maybe I misunderstood something?
    3. But but, your previous Beatles album, Skywriting, does feature songs from both 1981 and 1982 albums of George´s.

    Only explanation is that none of the tracks from Extra Texture were good or beatlesque enough for this album, which I find a bit hard to believe. I am a George fan, but it is no secret that his track record post-1973 is spotty, and 33 1/3 is by no means a high-water mark for him. Is there really no better song to open side B than See Yourself?

    Also, from a listener point of view, that last track is hard. It really seems like the obligatory John track, in a bad way. Personally, I think would have preferred cutting John out of the album entirely, or using some cover song from Rock n Roll.

    To end on a positive note, I am surprised how well songs from 33 and Speed of Sound fit together. And the medley of Beautiful Girl and Dear One is perfect.

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    1. This is the best way to explain it, as this is how I actually did this: I created a timeline of all their major studio recordings, and grouped the concurrent sessions together...
      https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1sT_uN0pHl8KG3o56NpvTuDxS2BGOaSaXi8Zf76J-05U/edit?usp=sharing

      As you can see, I considered 33 1/3 closer to the Wings At The Speed Of Sound era. And lo and behold! the two albums sound great when grouped together, much better (imo) than Extra Texture.

      As for Tennessee, eh, it is what it is.

      Also, I like 33 1/3 better than Extra Texture. :p

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  25. It's already 2023, any date available or tracklist for the Beatles follow up to this album?

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    1. Eh, no. Honestly, there's like 5 or 6 reconstructions ahead of this one. All in good time though!

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    2. I see, that's a pity. Will look forward to whatever comes ahead anyways, thanks for the reply!

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