Live at the Hollywood Bowl (2016)


1. Twist and Shout
2. She's a Woman
3. Dizzy Miss Lizzie
4. Ticket to Ride
5. Can't Buy Me Love
6. Things We Said Today
7. Roll Over Beethoven
8. Boys
9. A Hard Day's Night
10.Help!
11.All My Loving
12.She Loves You
13.Long Tall Sally
14.You Can't Do That
15.I Wanna Hold Your Hand
16.Everybody's Trying to Be My Baby
17.Baby's in Black

 

Contrary to what a lot of people think, this is not an original release. Like most other Beatles CDs, this one first saw the light of day on vinyl, yet was released well into the 1970s after their breakup.

Capturing a live recording of the Beatles was never an easy thing. We must first remember the limits of technology. There was never much of an effort to focus on sound quality back in the mid-sixties. Especially when the band was playing in huge amphitheaters or stadiums. Then, one must factor in the screaming. Oh, the screaming. It is the consensus of most people that actually attended a Beatle show that one could not hear anything but the screaming. The boys themselves were never too keen to play live shows once they became popular. The goal seemed to be to get on stage, and get off as quick as possible. Some their concerts lasted about 35 minutes – with the band managing to cram in about 14 songs.

Now, I’ve never heard the original album, but from what I’ve read, it originally didn’t make the transition to compact disc because the screaming was just too intense. Apparently, that’s now finally been fixed. Sort of. You can still hear quite the screaming on this thing. In fact, as authentic as it makes the experience, it hinders the overall enjoyment of the record. For me at least.

The band definitely sounds as though they’re in good spirits as they laugh and joke between the songs. All four get a chance at the spotlight. Ironically, it’s Ringo’s Boys that seems to be the most well received (i.e. loudest screaming) of the lot. The song selection is about as strong as can be as well. Still, though, there’s a fair share of flubs and missed notes throughout, and one really does come away the impression that the guys weren’t quite as focused to ensure they delivered a pitch-perfect show every night.

With all of the flaws, this is still probably the best live recording one can find of the boys in their prime. We must also remember that it was shortly after these performances that the Beatles quit touring all together. I’ve really only listened to this thing a few times out of curiosity. It really doesn’t warrant repeated listens for my palette. Too much screaming.

There are four bonus songs added to the original LP pressing for this CD. There all a welcome addition, but Baby’s in Black is a bit of a disappointment as the “closer”. They should have picked a stronger track.

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