The Beatles: Eight Days A Week and Live at the Hollywood Bowl

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Friday, 16/09/2016 10:09

So one of the last remaining pieces of The Beatles history has finally arrived, The Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl and Eight Days A Week - The Touring Years album.

What's in The Beatles: Eight Days A Week - The Touring Years album and The Beatles Live at the Hollywood Bowl?

The Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl is a live album released on 5 May 1977 featuring songs by the Beatles compiled from two live performances at the Hollywood Bowl during August 1964 and August 1965. The album was released by Capitol Records in the United States and Canada and by Parlophone in the United Kingdom. And now, a remixed, remastered, and expanded version of the album, retitled Live at the Hollywood Bowl, was released on 9 September 2016 to coincide with the release of The Beatles documentary directed by Ron Howard, The Beatles: Eight Days a Week.

The Beatles Eight days a week and Live at the Hollywood Bowl

 The Beatles Eight Days a Week and Live at the Hollywood Bowl

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – The Touring Years is a documentary film directed by Ron Howard about The Beatles' career during their touring years from 1962 to 1966, from their performances at the Cavern Club in Liverpool to their final concert in San Francisco in 1966. The music album, then and now, is best approached as a supplement to the studio albums of the era. It provides some context, allowing us to hear exactly why the Beatles had difficulty getting their music across in a concert setting. In fact, the Live at the BBC (1994) and On Air - Live at the BBC Volume 2 (2013) remain the best official means to listen to The Beatles live. The thing about those BBC performances is that, for the most part, they were not recorded with live audiences. As good as many of the individual tracks are, they generally don't crackle with the energy and enthusiasm as live concert material. 

Giles Martin took over productions duties from his late father for “Live at Hollywood Bowl” and heightens to an often astonishing degree the dynamics and clarity of the performances initially given at the famed California venue during the summers of 1964 and 1965. The original hits are played with to-the-letter exactness in spots, allowing the efficient despondency of “Ticket to Ride,” the electric vitality of “She’s a Woman” and the pure pop innocence of “Can’t Buy Me Love” to jubilantly shine.

The Beatles Live at the Hollywood Bowl

 The Beatles Live at the Hollywood Bowl

The bonus mterial, highlighted by a raw, exuberant “You Can’t Do That” and the jolting but dour electric waltz “Baby’s in Black,” extends the party. Sure, the screams are an unavoidable deterrent. But “Live at the Hollywood Bowl” manages, in pretty glorious terms, to capture a living snapshot of a lost pop age. As such, you can hardly blame the masses that assembled to witness it over 50 years ago for getting caught up in the moment. There's a harder-rocking treatment of "Things We Said Today." That and the opening "Twist and Shout".

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Ryan Carter

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