The Beatles

Unsurpassed Masters, Vol. 2 (1964-1965)

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Though Yellow Dog's Unsurpassed Masters, Vol. 2 was rendered largely redundant by EMI's legitimate issue Anthology, it still contains a few cuts die-hard Beatles completists may require. John Lennon's rhythm guitar -- so often indistinguishable in the typical George Martin mix -- can be fully admired and appreciated in the wordless versions of "Help!" and "Day Tripper" included here. Likewise, McCartney's "We Can Work It Out," emerges as a charming instrumental with its subtle chord structure bared. The extended jam of "She's a Woman" is less attractive owing to Paul's maniacal screaming (ad nauseam) in the fade, but it is interesting to hear McCartney's soulful vocal without overdubs. "12-Bar Original" was pruned for Anthology 2; the unedited version here seems interminable. Completist? OK, get this. Casual fan? Forget it.

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