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Did the American arm of EMI (Capitol) ever get it right?
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Into the Sky with Diamonds
New York
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2 September 2011 - 2.40am

Actually, the Beatles pics/On a desert island... thread got me thinking: There IS something American Capitol Records got right: the cover pictures: Beatles VI is excellent, Beatles '65 is fun to look at, Meet the Beatles has a slightly blue-er tint than the British With the Beatles, Something New is the only cover to show the Beatles in concert (not the greatest picture admittedly). Yesterday and Today WOULD have been great with the butcher cover, and Hey Jude, well OK.

Granted, except Meet the Beatles, none of the pictures were taken expressly for an album cover, just good choices by Capitol.

"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)

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Von Bontee
A Hole In The Road
2829 Posts
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2 September 2011 - 7.01pm

IMDeWalrus said:

I've always thought the US version of Rubber Soul worked better than the EMI/Parlophone version.   It has a more folk-rock feel to it, with the accoustic "I've Just Seen A Face" opening for the also-accoustic "Norwegian Wood".  I think that works much better than the opening Parlophone track ("Drive My Car").   And I also prefer the US version of "I'm Looking Through You", with its false start.  

Other than that, I think the British versions are far and away the best ones.    The Capitol album Hey Jude didn't really make sense to me (even though it was the first LP I ever bought) -- I couldn't understand why they included "Can't Buy Me Love" and "I Should Have Known Better", which are completely out of step with the rest of the album, and why they left off "The Inner Light".   The Past Masters collections are much better, and have made the American album irrelevant. 

Even though making Rubber Soul a folk-rock album was a reasonable-enough rationale, Capitol STILL got it wrong - surely the MIA "Nowhere Man" and "If I Needed Someone" were more pure folk-rockers than "Think For Yourself" and "The Word"!

And apparently that "false start" isn't really a false start at all, but rather an error done by Capitol during the stereo mastering process. (It fooled many of us for years!)

As for Hey Jude, "Can't Buy Me Love" and "I Should've Known Better" made sense, as they had never been on a Capitol LP before; but yeah, they should've included "The Inner Light" as well. (Not to mention "From Me To You", "I'm Down", "Misery", "There's A Place" and "Sie Liebt Dict", non-LP cuts all.)

Appreciate your comments, btw!

One day, a tape-op got a tape on backwards, he went to play it, and it was all "Neeeradno-undowarrroom" and it was "Wow! Sounds Indian!"
-- Paul McCartney

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meanmistermustard

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2 September 2011 - 8.51pm

Von Bontee said:

…And apparently that "false start" isn't really a false start at all, but rather an error done by Capitol during the stereo mastering process. (It fooled many of us for years!)

The intro on the US stereo mix of Im Looking Through You is the real false start. The complete released take of the song (take 4) is available on bootleg along with the take announcement and the beginnings match perfectly. Regarding the error, it was probably included on the master Capitol received and whoever put it all together either thought why not its the beatles or that was how the song was meant to start.

Ive never really cared for the US Rubber Soul. Its Only Love sounds out of place and whilst Ive Just Seen A Face is a brilliant song i dont like it as an album opener, much prefer Drive My Car (not that its a better song - hope that makes sense).

As for Hey Jude, "Can't Buy Me Love" and "I Should've Known Better" made sense, as they had never been on a Capitol LP before; but yeah, they should've included "The Inner Light" as well. (Not to mention "From Me To You", "I'm Down", "Misery", "There's A Place" and "Sie Liebt Dict", non-LP cuts all.)

Sie Liebt Dich would have been so out of place amongst the other tracks. By 1970 the novelty had worn off of hearing it in German.  The other songs could easily have been included but Allen Klein was behind it and probably thought 10 was the least amount they could get away with whilst charging full price. TBH im not sure Misery, Theres A Place and From Me To You would have suited being on the album. Fine songs as they are it would have jarred with them on it. Maybe the same can be said with The Inner Light and its Indian vibe. Maybe.

"I told you everything I could about me, Told you everything I could" ('Before Believing' - Emmylou Harris) 

"Don't make your love suffer insecurities; Trade the baggage of "self" to set another one free" ('Paper Skin' - Kendall Payne)

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CranberrySauce
Sitting on a Corn Flake
398 Posts
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2 September 2011 - 9.58pm

Probably already been mentioned, but I actually prefer the American "Help" (the song, not the album). That James Bond intro is simply epic!

 

However, Capitol Revolver is terrible. I thought it was a severely overrated album until I finally got to hear the British version when I got the remasters.  

 

So I have mixed feelings.

Because the wind is high, it blows my mind.
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Von Bontee
A Hole In The Road
2829 Posts
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1 October 2012 - 7.51pm

Have to agree with ITSWD - I too think that the "Meet The Beatles" album cover, with the blue tinting and slight touch of gold trim, is more attractive than "With The Beatles". And that's in extreme comparison with nearly all of the other Capitol covers, some of which were remarkably hideous.

One day, a tape-op got a tape on backwards, he went to play it, and it was all "Neeeradno-undowarrroom" and it was "Wow! Sounds Indian!"
-- Paul McCartney

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mr. Sun king coming together
Nowhere Land
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2 October 2012 - 1.38am

And, of course, Meet The Beatles is astronomically better then the Canadian "Beatlemaina! With The Beatles" which features their entire faces being covered in text. I hate the cover.

As if it matters how a man falls down.'

'When the fall's all that's left, it matters a great deal.

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