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The White Stripes – Elephant

First post in a while, but what would you rather: a lot of shit, or not enough of pure awesome?

Woody Allen once made a joke of this conundrum in his movie Annie Hall, it goes something like ‘Two elderly women are at an old persons home and one says “Boy, the food at this place is really terrible.” And the other one says “Yeah I know; and such small portions.” But this is coming from the man who slid his erect penis inside his adopted daughter, so really, what’s his judgment worth?

Nobody spreads themselves thin like Jack White. But this week, Jack decided to smash one of his many spinning plates. Part of the reason why The White Stripes decided to cease to be was to preserve the band and what makes it special. The only thing that does make The White Stripes special is forgetting all the rubbish songs that buried the good ones.

But like an elephant, I never forget, Jack. Indeed, the world seemed very satisfied for Meg and Jack to keep releasing almost perfect albums. Many, myself included, stood by and watched them play live. People permitted the aimless blues wankery for many songs in a row to get to that sweet glorious nectar of great songwriting. Now that it is all over, consider this your Nuremberg trial, Meg and Jack White.

I was excited when ‘Elephant’ came out because I thought the title addressed the elephant in the room, so to speak, of White Stripes albums being quite patchy in quality. I was wrong. ‘Elephant’ is a vicious lo-fi masterpiece waiting to happen. But the tracklisting is all fucked up and there are a few obvious cuts to make. Like every White Stripes album, there are 6 or 7 corkers, 2 or 3 songs that only the fans will like, and then… the rest. You know, those songs you pretend to like because they’re on the same album as ‘Seven Nation Army’? You don’t have to be so kind.

First and foremost, if there is a song that is over 4:30, it better have a note from its parents as to why. And unless its parents are the glorious fictitious gay coupling of Freddie Mercury and John Bonham, it’s got no reason to penetrate my ear canal. A 7 minute song of Jack White faffing about isn’t my idea of a good song, nor is it anyone else’s. Hence track 7 ‘Ball & Biscuit’ must go stand in the corner.

The next to go, ‘Hypnotise’.

An apt title, as I think Jack White is trying to hypnotise us into thinking that we haven’t heard this bullshit done before, and a lot better, earlier in the album. When I count to 3 and snap my fingers, you’ll wake up and find yourself fucking redundant.

Little Acorns

Kind of a cool song on first listen. But if it came up on my iPod on shuffle, I’d skip it. You would too. Admit it. If Jack was more like the squirrel in the song, saving his good songs, then I wouldn’t have to feature The White Stripes here at all. Practice what you preach, you filthy animal.

‘I Want To Be The Boy’ – Ever see a game of cricket and watch the bowler come steaming in towards the batter, only for the bowler to pull out at the last minute and the whole crowd boo’s? Jack White has managed to capture that bitter disappointing anti-climax perfectly here. At once an achievement and a waste of everyone’s time. Touché, Jack. Touché.

That’s all that needs to be cut. What follows is quite a restructuring, but not unlike a bogan getting their garden landscaped on TV, yous won’t be sure at the start’n’that, but yous’ll be heaps happy, ay.

I could go on about the how’s and why’s at this point, but I’d like to think that by now you have realized just how correct I am in every instance and just do what you’re told, after all, that’s why you are here.

You’re welcome.

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Queens Of The Stone Age – Lullabies To Paralyze

How the fuck do you follow up ‘Songs For The Deaf’?

It was a devastatingly great rock record. And now that the Noughties are drawing to a close, I can safely say that it is my favourite rock record of the whole decade, which of course, makes it true for everyone.

There was something very special about Josh Homme, Nick Oliveri and Dave Grohl going nuts onstage together. But then Grohl went back to the Foo Fighters, and after discovering that Oliveri was a woman basher, Homme made the bald nutcase pack his bags and sent him hurtling back into obscurity. Surely obscurity would be better than doing acoustic sessions at the fucking Mona Vale pub, but hey what’s the guy going to do? Get a job in IT? While you can kick him out of the band in disgrace, you can’t take away what he added to ‘Rated R’ and ‘Songs For The Deaf’… but he is still a cunt.

Following up this rock monster without the rhythm section of Grohl and Oliveri was always going to be a bit of an uphill battle. And by a bit of an uphill battle, I mean Gallipoli. And to his credit, Homme almost did it. Almost.

There are 15 songs on ‘Lullabies To Paralyze’. Homme and Co got away with making a 15 track album work before with ‘Songs For The Deaf’ and surprisingly, Rick Rubin didn’t produce either album. But the second time around they didn’t have back half winners like ‘Do It Again’ and ‘Another Love Song’ to steady the ship. Here the 15 songs are riddled with asbestos, but my wrecking ball of justice is here to knock down and rebuild what I believe is a sweet follow up to ‘Songs For The Deaf’. Here’s how you fix ‘Lullabies To Paralyze’.

First off, laugh at another case of second half album disease. This album’s second half drags like a dog’s arse on the grass. Everything is surprisingly good until track 10, ‘The Blood Is Love’. Now, 9 songs in a row is an awful lot to get right. But after track 9 it becomes quite a clusterfuck.

‘The Blood Is Love’ is a six and a half minute jam song that is completely outgunned by the previous song, ‘Someone’s In The Wolf’, a six minute epic that sprawls and pummels in the best way possible. It’s so good that the rest of the record struggles to come down from that high. And if you’ve got a song that good, why not make that your final firework? Even the closer ‘Long Slow Goodbye’ doesn’t get the ire up to properly wrap up this record. It’s like getting a handjob only for the giver to fall asleep halfway through. So, why have it there? Why indeed.

This is why this album was considered a disappointment. This album is 70% vital organs, 30% appendix. Here’s how to evolve beyond the need of this useless organ.

Track 10 – ‘The Blood Is Love’ – For reasons stated above, it’s gone.

Track 11 – ‘Skin On Skin’ – This droney number would suit the self titled debut, but doesn’t cut the mustard here. The only skin on skin here is my foot kicking this song’s arse out the door.

Track 12 – ‘Broken Box’ – I have use for you in the rebuilding process. I am Schindler and you’re on my list.

Track 13 – ‘You’ve Got A Killer Scene There Man’ – No you don’t man. You’re forthwith banished from the land.

Track 14 – ‘Long Slow Goodbye’ – It just never takes off. It’s not bad, but it’s not good, so sadly it must get a Short Blunt Fuck Off.

Track 15 – ‘(Hidden Finale)’ – I love the ridiculous humour of this. It can stay.

So now we’ve discarded the harmful material, it’s time to get in there and do a little renovating. Those first nine songs really are great. From the Mark Lanegan ballad opener ‘This Lullaby’, it’s clear Josh Homme has pulled out his big guns and now that I’ve surgically removed the obstructions, it’s clear to hit the bullseye.

‘Broken Box’ really is a tasty little three minute wonder. I’ve discovered it belongs at Track 7, leaving ‘Someone’s In The Wolf’ to take its rightful place at the head of the table. And now, at the end of the song when you literally hear it get cut short, ‘(Hidden Finale)’ plays like a funeral march for it. It’s fucking great. Man, you bastards are so lucky I’m here to fix this shit for you.

1. ‘This Lullaby’

2. ‘Medication’

3. ‘Everybody Knows That You Are Insane’

4. ‘Tangled Up In Plaid’

5. ‘Burn The Witch’

6. ‘In My Head’

7. ‘Broken Box’

8. ‘Little Sister’

9. ‘I Never Came’

10. ‘Someone’s In The Wolf’

11. ‘(Hidden Finale)’

You’re welcome.

Queen – Greatest Hits

All of Queen’s albums are the frustrating middle-men that were necessary to compile their greatest hits. Never has a more successful band released more rubbish albums and yet retained as high a level of popularity as Queen.

While most bands worth their salt have more than enough “deep cuts” to justify their existence, I defy anyone to find a Queen song better than what can be found on their greatest hits albums. Take a look at any Queen album and you will find about three good songs and seven wild misses.

I feel conflicted in passing this long overdue judgement upon these British stalwarts. On one hand, I must tug their collective shaft as I praise their (near) fixing of their own back catalogue. But on the other hand, I must choke slam them into the mat of self decency, as I have watched them skullfuck Freddie Mercury’s corpse with their persistent necrophilia for far too long.

But first, the music. Who doesn’t own Queen’s ‘Greatest Hits’? It’s an almost flawless record. Almost. I’ve been to two functions lately where the DJ has dropped ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ and the crowd has gone nuts.

‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ is, on paper, the worst song of all time. An earnest yet funny rock opera that clocks in at just under six minutes with a plot that would make David Lynch’s brow furrow. In practice, however, it is magic. Pure. Magic. The effect this song has on a room is instant and no party is the same after this song is played. Now that is something to behold.

That’s Track 1. What follows in an embarrassment of riches that would make any band blush. The first ‘Greatest Hits’ album was released in 1981, which leaves roughly another decade of music to draw from for their second greatest hits album.

‘Greatest Hits II’, by contrast, is shithouse. I gleaned three good songs from this barrel scraping joke and discarded the rest like nuclear waste. When I sprinkled these three songs across the original ‘Greatest Hits’ to create one masterful album, it was a joy.

Below is the tracklisting for the greatest ‘Greatest Hits’.

1. Bohemian Rhapsody

2. Another One Bites The Dust

3. Killer Queen

4. Fat Bottomed Girls

5. Bicycle Race

6. You’re My Best Friend

7. Don’t Stop Me Now

8. Crazy Little Thing Called Love

9. I Want To Break Free

10. Somebody To Love

11. Radio Ga-Ga

12. Good Old-Fashioned Lover Boy

13. Flash

14. Seven Seas Of Rhye

15. Under Pressure

16. We Will Rock You

17. We Are the Champions

Look at that. Pretty awesome isn’t it? I have deleted some songs from the ‘Greatest Hits I’ album. You won’t notice which ones though, which is why I cut them in the first place. Seriously, unless you look it up, you’ll never know. So don’t bother. Jump into your iTunes and make the glorious improvements.

Let’s examine ‘Under Pressure’. Before Vanilla Ice used the bass line to launch his Challenger rocket of a music career, John Deacon tastefully played his way through this magnificent duet with the one and only David Bowie. I feel I must make special mention of this song for two reasons. I love the idea of David Bowie and Freddie Mercury in a room together.

Secondly, it’s one of the few rock duets that doesn’t seem cobbled together to help declining sales or just for the fuck of it. This song simply couldn’t be done without Bowie or Queen. It was a special conglomeration that only these two artists could achieve and the result is a very unique and exceptional song. At the other end of the Queen spectrum is the Roger Taylor penned song ‘I’m In Love With My Car’, which features the following line in the chorus: “I’m in love with my car/Got a feel for my automobile”. That, my friends, is Spinal Tap territory. Freddie Mercury refused to sing it, and Brian May thought it was a practical joke. So what did they do with it? They slapped it on ‘A Night At The Opera’, which is the same album as ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’.

‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ is track 11 on this album. ‘I’m In Love With My Car’ is track 3. If I were to equate this monumental tracklisting error with a historical blunder, it would be the following quote from Warren Austin (1st US Ambassador to the UN) in 1948: “Arabs and Jews should settle their differences like good Christians.”

But now let us have a look at Queen’s bass player, John Deacon. Not the most famous of names, though you’d know his bass work anywhere. Queen are a unique band, because every single member has written a hit. Deacon himself clocked up ‘Another One Bites The Dust’ and ‘You’re My Best Friend’. Not too shabby. In the 19 years since Freddie Mercury succumbed to AIDS, only 2 respectable things can be said of Queen.

  1. Brian May has kept the same perm. Not because it is in fashion, but because he fucking likes it.
  2. John Deacon quit Queen and stopped playing publicly after some charity events.

John Deacon, take a bow. For you have dignity and the respect of the music world. But your former band mates, guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor, are fucking soulless, petty, utterly despicable cunts.

Together they have dragged Queen’s name and music through the mud to any event that might pay a shiny penny and get the spotlight back onto their wrinkled fuckwit faces. Whether it’s teaming up with Robbie Williams to re-record ‘We Are The Champions’ for the ‘A Knight’s Tale’ soundtrack (the coroner still hasn’t ruled out embarrassment playing a role in Heath Ledger’s death), or playing a fucking talent show and letting ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ be gang raped on live television.

Brian May and Roger Taylor would play the opening of an envelope. As long as that envelope is stuffed full of cash. It’s a clear case of them being blinded by greed and the sweet smell of success.

It is the worst case I’ve ever seen. Yes, even worse than INXS.

Because somehow, along the way, they forgot something. Freddie Mercury was one of the best frontmen of all time.

Watch him turn that potential clusterfuck of people into one heaving, chanting, loving blob of putty in his hands. I’ve never seen that done before, or since. It is, quite simply, one of the best moments in live music. Seriously, stop reading and click that link and watch the best 20 minute concert you’ll ever see, this article will still be here. Go have a squiz and get educated on what a great frontman does, then come back and read the rest of this.

He flirts with crowd, sticks his tongue out at them, he dances with the cameramen, he pretends his microphone is his cock. And they love it. Skip to 4:23 into part 1 on YouTube.

It is phenomenal.

What’s even more phenomenal is that this sold out Wembley Stadium is there for charity to help feed Africa. It’s not even a Queen concert. Not even Paul McCartney singing ‘Let It Be’ later that same day got this much audience reaction and participation. Which is what makes this all the more depressing.

And especially this.

That’s British guitar boyband, McFly covering ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’. I’ve endured the pain of watching the whole thing, so I can tell you to skip to 1:48 for the funniest, yet saddest thing, you’ll see all week.

Ironically, Queen staged a musical called ‘We Will Rock You’ written by Ben Elton (whose high output borders on OCD) that condemns manufactured music. Oh, the irony.

Why they feel the need to whore themselves and their dead friend’s great music out, I’ll never fully understand. They even had the nerve to release a new album with a different lead singer, Paul Rodgers of Free, and still use the Queen name. It was called ‘Queen + Paul Rodgers – The Cosmos Rocks’. That’s such a Dad title for a record, I can barely even fathom it.

While publicly decrying his former bandmates’ collaboration with Robbie Williams, John Deacon lost his almost certain spot in the coveted ‘It’s Ok I Fixed It Hall Of Fame’ by giving his blessing to ‘The Cosmos Rocks’. Before you start emailing me about bands getting new singers and doing great afterwards, but running out of examples after AC/DC’s superb ‘Back In Black’, let me assure you, listening to this album is akin to watching an animal eat its young.

I’d plead with Brian May and Roger Taylor to take a leaf from John Deacon’s book and just retire with a beautiful wife, kids and millions of dollars and not worry about bills or food or anything ever again. Be content to have a head full of great memories, look back fondly on Freddie and the amazing music they made together, and just enjoy life. But it’s clear to me that they can’t. It is clear that as human beings, they are unfixable.

You’re welcome.

‘Paul McCartney’

Paul McCartney, utterly depressed with the ramshackle demise of The Beatles and the band-aid fixing of ‘Let It Be’ at the hands of our incarcerated friend, Old Crazy Murder Pants Phil Spector, retreated into his living room.

In his living room he had a drum kit, a bass, some guitars, a piano, a 4 track recorder and a set of vocal chords that anyone would murder their identical twin to have. Was Paul going to sit around and sulk into his sweet, thick beard?

Hell no.

This man, one half of the most successful songwriting duo ever, was going to hit record and do what he does best. Paul was on a songwriting hot streak. After recording ‘Let It Be’, The Beatles, sensing they were at their end, went straight back into the studio to give it one more red hot go. That album was ‘Abbey Road’. The production of the album and movie ‘Let It Be’ was dragging on, and as such, ‘Abbey Road’ was released before ‘Let It Be’ was finished. On these last 2 albums, Paul had written ‘Get Back’, ‘Let It Be’, ‘Oh! Darling’, ‘You Never Give Me Your Money’ and ‘The Long And Winding Road’. Cop that.

Well, well, well Poor McCartney. Get ready for me to Pull Apartney your debut solo album ‘Paul McCartney’.

I was so excited to listen to this album. I loved the idea of Paul sitting in his living room writing his ‘Fuck you’ to the rest of The Beatles, his wife, Linda, encouraging from the sidelines. I remember when I first got it. My hand was quivering with excitement, like the first time you unzip your partner’s jeans. I wrapped the headphones around my head and pressed play. Paul McCartney then proceeded to prison rape my ears. I’m not one for exaggeration, but Paul McCartney’s debut solo album is the most disappointing album of all time.

Dumbstruck, I wade through 5 noodley, poorly written songs before I find an oasis in a sea full of broken hopes, ‘Junk’. I take refuge in this beautiful song and gulp a deep breath before venturing forth into another onslaught of musical torture. Again, McShartney subjects me to 5 more abominable songs before I reach the lighthouse in this fucking shitstorm of an album, ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’.

‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ is one of the best songs Paul McCartney will ever write. That includes Beatles songs. But, as we know, two songs don’t maketh an album. So ladies and gentlemen, I present to you, the Paul McCartney Double A-side.

  1. Maybe I’m Amazed
  2. Junk

Normally I go through a few or all the songs on the album to justify their express delivery into the incinerator, but such is my emotional scarring from listening to this album that I can’t bring myself to dwell on it. It left me hurt, confused and cold. So I’ll keep this as brief as my battered mental state will let me.

There are too many fucking instrumentals on this album. How many instrumentals are too many I hear you ask? One. One is too fucking many. But this album has around 3. I don’t have the strength to go back and verify that number. And when you have a voice like McCartney’s, it’s like watching a porn where no one has any uglies to bump.

Great instrumental tracks are more rare than diamonds covered in gold set in a hunk of opal perched on the tip of a unicorn’s horn.

Interestingly, Paul set a precedent that George Harrison followed in having 2 versions of the one song on an album. The offender in question here is ‘Singalong Junk’ – an instrumental version of ‘Junk’. It’s utterly useless other than reminding you that you’d rather hear McCartney sing the fucking song.

Sadly Paul’s solo career is probably the most disappointing of all The Beatles. I know Ringo just popped into your head, but really, Paul has no excuse.

I could continue laying into Paul until he becomes a bloody pulp, but I won’t. Instead, I’m going to hang a gold medal around his neck, heartily shake his hand and tickle his vegan balls as I honour him as the first inductee into the It’s Ok I Fixed It Hall Of Fame.

Sometime ago, Paul McCartney sat down and listened to Old Crazy Murder Pants Phil Spector’s ‘Let It Be’ and thought, ‘Hang about… I know how to fix this.’

Yes, Sir Paul, you surely fucking did.

Over 30 years after recording the original, Paul went back into the studio with the most disjointed album the Beatles ever made and came out in 2003, completely victorious.

Gone were the tacked on strings and choir. He used different takes, he spliced two different versions of songs together, he completely re-arranged the track listing… he fixed it.

He fixed it good.

This wasn’t a simple remastering. The guy got in there, rolled up his sleeves and fixed that motherfucker once and for all. The songs ‘Across The Universe’ and ‘The Long And Winding Road’ benefit the most. I firmly recommend deleting the original “I’ll-let-it-slide-because-it’s-the-Beatles-so-therefore-I guess-it’s-charming” ‘Let It Be’ from your iTunes and replacing it with ‘Let It Be… Naked’.

So I decree a rare “Thank You” upon Sir Paul McCartney, for doing my job for me.

Now I’ve done the hard, mentally scarring work for you Macca, go into the studio, cast every song on your debut asunder except ‘Maybe I’m Amazed’ and ‘Junk’, then re-release it as the Double A-Side it should be.

You’re welcome.

U2 – Part 1

U2 are one of the world’s biggest bands. Consistently successful with a career spanning several decades, their delay-soaked brand of stadium bombast has filled countless stadiums the world over.

They are also a very generous band. “Because of Bono’s many charitable efforts?” I hear you ask. No. Because they did us all the favour of fixing their own problematic discography in one fell swoop.

The November 2006 release of this U2 greatest hits compilation saw me breathe a sigh of relief, as I no longer had to wade through hordes of useless filler to get to a full album’s worth of gold from this horrendously overrated band.

“What about ‘The Joshua Tree’?! That’s incredible!” I hear you scream. Well let me tell you something friends. I ventured into the woods with my chainsaw and chopped down the fucking Joshua Tree. That’s right. Why? Because it’s only half a good album. All you need are the first five tracks, at most:

1. Where the Streets Have No Name

2. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For

3. With or Without You

4. Bullet the Blue Sky

5. Running to Stand Still

LP to EP! Hoorah! Why such a clean snap? Usually when fixing a record I need to shuffle it around a little more. I’ll tell you why. After recording the album, the band gave it to the producer’s wife to create the tracklisting by sequencing the songs in order of her preference. This gives us a rare objective assessment from an outsider. It should have forced the band to revaluate the less favoured tracks. It didn’t. Hence, the album’s back half sags worse than Governor Schwarzenegger’s man boobs…

Some of you may argue for the relative merits of ‘Achtung Baby’ as an unquestionable masterpiece. Well achtung morons – you’re wrong! But that’s for another time, otherwise this post will drag out to Oakeshott-esque proportions.

Indeed, every album U2 have ever released can easily be truncated from LP to EP or abolished from the histories altogether. This applies to their latest clunker, ‘No Line On The Horizon’. The songs and titles on that record are as poor as The Edge’s choice of headwear. For example…

‘No Line On The Horizon’ – The horizon is a line. That doesn’t make sense. Idiot.

‘Get On Your Boots’ – Have you ever heard anyone say “Get On Your Boots”? No. You would say “Get Your Boots On”. Shut up Bono.

‘I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight’ – I don’t even need to say anything about this.

You’re welcome.

UNFIXABLE

As much as I loathe to admit it, despite my best efforts and obvious tremendous talent, most albums simply cannot be fixed.

You can come at it sideways, explore the b-side options, but alas, 99% of albums released are dead on arrival. An album needs at least one good song to pull my patented manoeuvre – the ol’ ‘LP to Single’.

So with this in mind, please stop sending emails requesting that I fix your friend’s band, ‘SkyDeathRocket’, and their self-titled debut album. I can’t unfuck the beyond fucked.

If you’ve got 13 awful songs, asking me to narrow it down to 10 awful songs isn’t going to help the world. What would help the world is if you all put down your instruments, walk out of your bass player’s parents’ garage and never play music again. If you don’t stop, someone else will stop you; he’s called Charles Darwin, and he’ll thin the herd of you lot.

Some artists just don’t know when they’re shit. Like Robbie Williams. His album, ‘Rudebox’, is spectacularly unfixable. But that’s not to say it can’t be useful. The Chinese found a better use for the unsold copies of this synth-based abortion of an album. They made a road out of it.

They crushed the CDs, and used the material to pave a fucking road.

So let this be a lesson to you. While an album may be unfixable, that doesn’t necessarily make it unusable.

You’re welcome.

All Things Must Pass

With the release of ‘All Things Must Pass’, George Harrison signalled to the world that he wasn’t just a sideman to Lennon and McCartney. The album is an explosion from an artist that had been held back for too many years. This is not only one of the few great solo Beatle records (and the highest selling), but also one of the great singer/songwriter albums ever recorded.

In its original vinyl release it was a triple album, the third album being a jam session. Jam is for toast only, so already we can delete a handful of songs right there.

Following the invention of CDs, the whole thing was compressed onto two discs.

But as with all double albums, there was still fat to be cut. So unless a reincarnated or, fingers crossed, Zombie George Harrison comes back to rectify his ghastly mistakes, I’ll have to do it for him, lazy scouse bastard.

There is one concession that I will allow Harrison. This album was co-produced by convicted murderer and fucking maniac, Phil Spector.

Phil Spector really likes guns. He also invented a recording technique called the ‘Wall of Sound’. But 12 jurors didn’t think this was a positive enough contribution to society to cancel out the fact that he shot someone in the face for no reason, so into the slammer he went to rot in hell.

Old Crazy Phil would often pull out his guns during recording sessions just to win an argument.  So I wouldn’t put it past him to pull out his piece if Quiet George piped up about maybe cutting a few songs off the record. But with some of the songs that slipped by here, George has no excuse unless Old Crazy Murder Pants Phil Spector pointed a bazooka at his cock with his finger on the trigger.

The first thing that jumps out upon dusting off this classic is that there are two versions of the one song on here. ‘Isn’t It A Pity (Version 1)’ and ‘Isn’t It A Pity (Version 2)’. It really is a fucking pity when someone can’t pick the superior version. Let me put it this way, Version 1 is on Disc 1 at Track 4. Version 2? Track 8, Disc 2. An easy deletion.

As with every double album, we have some songs aiming for the same target. ‘My Sweet Lord’ topped the charts around the world and was the first solo Beatle song to do so. Its rival, ‘Hear Me Lord’, is the last song on Disc 2, and at six minutes long, even Jesus Christ would have to pretend to like this droopy number. The only way to save this song is if Jesus turned it into a nice drop of red.

Will the following songs please stand up:

‘Behind That Locked Door’ – I’ll tell you what’s behind that locked door. A wasted three minutes that brings you closer to your inevitable death. Throw away the key.

‘Run Of The Mill’ – It’s not a terrible song, but it’s not great either. Rarely does a song describe itself, or give its own reason to be wiped off the blackboard.

‘I Live For You’ – Another victim of survival of the fittest when pitted in a fight to the death against ‘If Not For You’. It was close, but the tasty bridge of the latter sees it cling to its spot on the final album.

‘Ballad Of Sir Frankie Crisp (Let It Roll)’ – A hard one to delete. Not only is the song not bad, but the eponymous Sir Frankie Crisp was a great character and one that I suggest reading up upon. He built the mansion that George eventually bought in the late 60s and was the best kind of crazy rich British aristocrat. But alas, the song has no hook, and in an album with more hooks than a fishing shop, this finds itself in the compost heap out the back of Friar Park.

The re-release of ‘All Things Must Pass’ also has a bunch of bonus tracks for the hardcore fans, but they add nothing aside from making it more bloated. So I’m sticking with the original release.

Once the dust had settled on my song deleting massacre, I was surprised to find that the normally limp second half made a strong showing. With the songs that survived, I had to do a lot more switching around than usual to get the whole thing to flow together. The main issue was Wall Of Sound fatigue. It really fucking pummels your ear drums, almost like a bullet to the face. But just like justice, good taste wins out in the end.

With classic songs like ‘Wah-Wah’, ‘All Things Must Pass’, ‘What Is Life’, ‘Awaiting On You All’, ‘Apple Scruffs’ and ‘Art Of Dying’, which I think is the best James Bond theme song never made, this album is now flawless, all thanks to me. Feast your eyes on this.

  1. ‘I’d Have You Anytime’
  2. ‘My Sweet Lord’
  3. ‘Wah-Wah’
  4. ‘Isn’t It A Pity’
  5. ‘What Is Life’
  6. ‘Apple Scruffs’
  7. ‘If Not For You’
  8. ‘I Dig Love’
  9. ‘Let It Down’
  10. ‘Beware Of Darkness’
  11. ‘Art Of Dying’
  12. ‘Awaiting On You All’
  13. ‘All Things Must Pass’

You’re welcome.

*Note: Today marks John Lennon’s 70th birthday. 40 years ago John received a song from George Harrison and Ringo Starr that they recorded for his 30th birthday. It’s called ‘It’s Johnny’s Birthday’. It’s nuts.

It’s on the ‘Apple Jam’ album that came with ‘All Things Must Pass’.

You’re welcome, again.