Revolver: The record that changed it all.
If you are a Beatles fan, as many of my friends... you may stop reading. But if you are a casual Beatles listener or are starting your journey as a music geek, read away!
Every Beatles album is worth listening but I chose this one to be the first covered in this blog because it helps us understand the group as a transformational force in music. As a kid I had heard of the Beatles, my dad had a tape or two he would play in the car. When one doesn't know the discography it is easy to think of them as one band with many hits when in reality, they are many different bands with distinct styles and contributions as they grew and evolved. Revolver is where the most important transformation happens.
By August 1966, when Rubber Soul came out, The Beatles were already a global phenomenon. With the benefit of knowing how history played out, it is hard to think that before this album, The Beatles were considered a pop fad, but this album changed it all and set the band on a trajectory that would change music history. Prior to this album, The Beatles were still innovating on top of the structure of the early rock American influence of the likes of Buddy Holly, but here, each band member started to develop their style and introduced more complex instruments and compositions, focusing more on leveraging the studio to create new sounds. They also started to focus on deeper lyrics beyond "Drive my Car." These changes are, in part, why after this album, they decided they would retire from live performances. They were frustrated since the fans would not stop screaming and seemed to pay less attention to the music, and only cared about the Beatle's "phenomenon."
There is not much more I can add to this blog entry, my main goal with this is to help you understand The Beatles and, at least for me, listening to Revolver in this context is what made me a Beatles fan.