Revolver was where this blog started, six and a half years ago, when we were all so much younger and more innocent. But only now, 56 years its release, has the Beatles Industrial Complex seen fit to grace us with the “Super Deluxe” version of what some people consider their best album.

I am not among them; though I can see the argument, I’m a White Album/Abbey Road guy. But this seems like a good moment to set the tent back up for a minute, if only to force myself to finally listen to the damn thing by having to write about it. There are five discs (though I’m listening on Spotify) and five days in the week, so my plan is to block out a little time every afternoon and spin one “disc”; when the music’s over, the writing will be too.

The first disc is Giles Martin’s 2022 remixes of the original album. I’m not generally big on remasters and such; my ear is often not sophisticated enough to tell the difference. But “Taxman” really jumps out of the speakers at you.


The songs that follow are likewise bright and clean, with the bass and drums particularly noticeable in the mix. It all sounds pretty great but the question is: Can you really “improve” something like Revolver? In a recent podcast, friend of the blog Knox Bronson argued that you can’t.


And on an ideological level, I can’t disagree. This is one of those issues that improved technology keeps raising: It’s now possible to pull any piece of old music apart and scrub out every perceived imperfection, but does that mean it should be done? Even as I say this I am hearing bass notes in “I’m Only Sleeping” that I never noticed before. Is that bad? It’s all very confusing.

Maybe I’m overthinking this. Maybe I should just sit back and listen for a while….

…OK, as we round the corner into Side 2, here are a few random thoughts:

  • How outrageous is it that Capitol Records had the gall to remove “I’m Only Sleeping,” “And Your Bird Can Sing,” and “Doctor Robert” from the original American album? That cuts the number of John songs in half, to only three, same as George.
  • In 1966, when Revolver was recorded, music that was 56 years old would have been made in 1910.
  • “Dr. Robert” is making me think of Dr. Oz, and jeez I hope that quack gets his ass kicked tomorrow.
  • “Tomorrow Never Knows” remains a magical and confounding piece of music. I look forward to hearing the early versions on Disc 2; that will be the first thing up tomorrow.
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