There was a Beatles session at EMI Studios today — the last one of 1968 — but none of The Beatles were there, nor was George Martin. Geoff Emerick was running the show as four songs were remixed in stereo for the upcoming Yellow Submarine soundtrack album. One of them was “Only a Northern Song,” which apparently proved problematic to mix because its tracks had been recorded on two different four-track tape machines which were not perfectly in sync.

Poor “Northern Song” seems to have been star-crossed and unloved from the beginning; it’s a bit surprising that it didn’t get buried in the same pit dug for other George songs like “Not Guilty.” But none of The Beatles were inclined to make any more effort than necessary for Yellow Submarine, which got whatever bits and pieces they had lying around.

A web search reveals that someone calling themselves the “Satanic Beatles” has posted to YouTube a version of “Only a Northern Song” slowed way, way down so that it lasts almost half a hour. I couldn’t say why. But if you have nothing better to do for the next 27 minutes, have at it:

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