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Author Topic: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?  (Read 5757 times)

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Casbah

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #60 on: July 15, 2013, 07:03:09 AM »

I had to give this topic a lot of thought.  First, I love every song on the album. It's a great, amazing record.
The problem I have with Pepper is not enough rock on the album. Sgt Pepper is good and I guess there is just enough rock in Getting Better and of course the reprise but every album by the Beatles previously, had rock. So it's not a go to album for me if I'm looking to rock out with the Beatles.

But, up till the late 80s, we listened to music differently. Play one side, flip the record or tape, play the other side. (I actually had SPLHCB on 8-Track). Much more linear. As a linear album, it's one of the best ever made. Kicks off with SP, weaves in and out and takes you on a nice journey, lots of different musical styles, then literally blows your mind out with DITL, one of the most powerful songs ever written.

It just works, really well. So no my opinion is it's not overrated at all.

On another note, knowing what we know about what was going on during this period from all the books and Anthology, It's a little sad realizing this was the beginning of the end for the Beatles.
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Dcazz

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #61 on: July 18, 2013, 08:45:39 PM »

It seems to me that the controversy of SP really revolves around just a few songs. She's Leaving Home, Within You, Without You, When I'm 64 and maybe Good Morning, Good Morning ( because they left out George and Ringo).
The first 5 songs are actually IMHO some of the best songs ever put on record (Fixing a Hole being my favorite) by the Beatles or anyone else. The problem comes when the three first mentioned are so polarized in different directions that you get thrown for a bit of a loop as all of a sudden your listening to a soap opera, the Bagdad Gita (?) and then back to a different time altogether with WI64. The album then resumes with Lovely Rita, GMGM and who could argue that closing the album with A Day In The Life is almost beyond comprehension.
I think the three songs actually make the album interesting. If they left them off it might be OK but it wouldn't be being listened to or discussed in the same way. There would be no argument.
All in all I think it's one of the greatest albums ever made and I still get a huge charge out of it when I que it up and get those first pounding notes from SPLHCB. I'm going to listen in the am.
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beatlesforever12

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #62 on: July 19, 2013, 10:53:38 PM »

i personally think every thing they put out is an inspired masterpiece
i agree that in a way sgt pepper isn't the best beatles album but i have a lotta love for it
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Kangaroo Kev

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #63 on: July 20, 2013, 12:15:41 PM »

To critique a Beatles album without a view to, and appreciation for, its historical context is, I believe, to do it a disservice.
SGT. PEPPER'S is not just a loosely-connected collection of thirteen well-made pop songs from 1967 - this album set the standard for studio craft, and the wider possibilities of pop as an artistic medium. Simply put, it raised the bar (by a wide increment), and let developing artists and the industry see that rock could be made to do much more than it had to that point.
To a large degree, to properly appreciate this album, you "had to be there."

THE most important track imo is the awesome "A Day in the Life." This last masterful, moving album closer might seem somewhat unremarkable now (especially to younger listeners), but its contrasting sections, time changes and greater length that moved beyond the usual two to three-minute radio-friendly format were bold, brave developments for its day. Pop music changed forever with that one track.
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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #64 on: July 20, 2013, 05:33:52 PM »

To critique a Beatles album without a view to, and appreciation for, its historical context is, I believe, to do it a disservice.
SGT. PEPPER'S is not just a loosely-connected collection of thirteen well-made pop songs from 1967 - this album set the standard for studio craft, and the wider possibilities of pop as an artistic medium. Simply put, it raised the bar (by a wide increment), and let developing artists and the industry see that rock could be made to do much more than it had to that point.
To a large degree, to properly appreciate this album, you "had to be there."

THE most important track imo is the awesome "A Day in the Life." This last masterful, moving album closer might seem somewhat unremarkable now (especially to younger listeners), but its contrasting sections, time changes and greater length that moved beyond the usual two to three-minute radio-friendly format were bold, brave developments for its day. Pop music changed forever with that one track.

I agree, and I consider Sgt. Pepper's as the most important Beatles' album, if not their best. And yes, rock/pop music changed forever, opening new directions, but according to my music taste I don't think that influence was all positive. I like experimentation, but I believe in the power of individual short songs more than the magic of long integrated albums. I love much more the music that led to Sgt. Pepper's than what came after this album; in fact, my very favorite period of rock music is 1965-1967.
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Strawberry Field

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #65 on: September 01, 2013, 05:58:53 PM »

Yes it is overrated. Way overrated. A Hard Day's Night, Rubber Soul, Revolver, The White Album, Abbey Road and *maybe* even Let it Be are all better. But it's still a Beatles album, which means it's still friggin' great. All original Beatles albums are great.
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Ovi

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #66 on: September 01, 2013, 06:59:31 PM »

I still don't think it's over-rated, because even those who do admit that it's a great/good album. As I said few pages ago, the only people who over-rate it are those who proclaim it to be the best album ever, miles ahead of anything attempted by anybody at any time. I think it's an incredible album, as good as any other Beatles album you'd want to compare it to.

And to prefer the disjointed, flawed, badly-sequenced, amateurishly over-produced at times album that is 'Let It Be' over it? No way.
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Hombre_de_ningun_lugar

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #67 on: September 02, 2013, 01:08:39 PM »

I still don't think it's over-rated, because even those who do admit that it's a great/good album. As I said few pages ago, the only people who over-rate it are those who proclaim it to be the best album ever, miles ahead of anything attempted by anybody at any time. I think it's an incredible album, as good as any other Beatles album you'd want to compare it to.

And to prefer the disjointed, flawed, badly-sequenced, amateurishly over-produced at times album that is 'Let It Be' over it? No way.

Yes, I think that Sgt. Pepper's is over-rated only by people who can't open their ears to other music than the Beatles. Sgt. Pepper's is probably the most famous Beatles album, and many people tend to underestimate highly popular albums. Another reason of why some people consider it's over-rated may be the very lower recognition given to other contemporaneous albums with perhaps higher artistic merits, so it would be over-rated only in comparison. Pet Sounds gained recognition with time, but other fantastic albums like Forever Changes or Odessey And Oracle are only praised by people who is very close to the music world.
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Ovi

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #68 on: September 02, 2013, 03:03:27 PM »

Another reason of why some people consider it's over-rated may be the very lower recognition given to other contemporaneous albums with perhaps higher artistic merits, so it would be over-rated only in comparison. Pet Sounds gained recognition with time, but other fantastic albums like Forever Changes or Odessey And Oracle are only praised by people who is very close to the music world.

Yeah, I agree, but what can you do? It's just the way things are. The same can be said about those who worship The Beatles, but completely ignore fantastic contemporary bands like The Kinks, The Beach Boys or The Velvet Underground.
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Strawberry Field

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #69 on: September 02, 2013, 09:20:23 PM »

Yes, I think that Sgt. Pepper's is over-rated only by people who can't open their ears to other music than the Beatles.

My favorite band is the Beach Boys. And I'm a Motown addict. And I love jazz. And I love Frank Sinatra. Etc, etc. I still think it's a little overrated but nonetheless Sgt. Pepper is a great album. But it's not the second coming of Christ.
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oldbrownshoe

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #70 on: October 06, 2013, 07:32:26 AM »

Thirty years ago I'd probably have said 'Yes', but in 2013 I think the answer is 'No, Sgt. Pepper's is actually slightly underrated'.
That said, it's not a record I return to too often, having last listened to it on the 40th anniversary in 2007.
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NYSPORTSFAN

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #71 on: November 07, 2013, 01:14:23 AM »

Revolver was notable for experimenting with Eastern influences, tape loops, sampling, backward music, baroque pop sections, and rougher guitar parts. You have to remember this was 1966 and this was before The Doors or Pink Floyd had recorded their debut albums

One common criticism of Sgt. Pepper that this album was released after albums like Absolutely Free, Velvet Underground or Younger Than Yesterday which of course did nothing on the pop charts. This of course does nothing to tarnish Sgt. Peppers influence as none of the albums mentioned have hardly anything in common with Sgt. Pepper.

In reality Sgt. Pepper combines many of Revolver musical experimentations with bombastic presentation and its focus on recurring melodies and fanfares creating an album unlike any before which in turn influenced everything from prog rock to Brit-pop

The gatefold album cover to the lyrics on the inside sleeve and cover art featuring iconic movie stars and other famous people with the Beatles dressed in their band costumes

The influence of Sgt. Peppers on the progressive rock movement extends past rock heavy weight bands Genesis, Yes and Pink Floyd, King Crimson, to a lot of contemporary progressive rock bands today. The biographical elements of Big Big Train's English Electric parts 1 and 2 and use of brass instruments on these albums hacks back to the Sgt. Peppers album. The Flower Kings suite, Garden of Dreams, on the album Flower Power, has an orchestral intro at the start and then is reprised near the end of the suite. The silence at the end of A Day in the Life followed by the voice loop just when you think the song is finished inspired many bands to use voices, as effects, in their songs.
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Moogmodule

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #72 on: December 16, 2013, 11:41:40 AM »

At the risk of sounding pompous so early in my time on this forum, I view pepper now as a bit like what Falstaff was to Verdi. Verdi had much bigger "hits" and the lack of standout arias in Falstaff means its not as popularly well regarded as his other more famous operas. But it's artistic merit shines through via short passages in ensembles and snatches of great moments. Similarly the songs on Pepper don't always seem to rise to great heights. Except for A Day in the Life of course, which is magnificent.  But there are great moments distributed throughout the album. The song structures and harmonics are varied on each song, while not having necessarily the easier hooks of previous works.  The production gives it a sense of cohesiveness. In that sense Pepper is one album where the individual songs don't work as well as individual songs off other albums. I tend to listen to Pepper as a whole. To me it sounds different to any other Beatle album and I disagree with John that you could have taken any song off it and put it on any other album.

The mix of styles from the more trippy Lucy in the Sky to the music hall When I'm 64 remind me of old talk shows that might have Paul Anka singing one minute then Led Zeppelin. It was meant to cover the entertainment waterfront.

Still not my favourite Beatles album. But I think in reacting against overrating it we don't want to underrate it either.
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In My Life

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #73 on: December 16, 2013, 11:32:05 PM »

The mix of styles from the more trippy Lucy in the Sky to the music hall When I'm 64 remind me of old talk shows that might have Paul Anka singing one minute then Led Zeppelin. It was meant to cover the entertainment waterfront.

Well put!
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Kangaroo Kev

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Re: Is Sgt. Pepper...´ Over-Rated?
« Reply #74 on: December 17, 2013, 09:50:43 PM »

Good post moogmodule :-)

i think musically musically it is slightly over rated in that the songs are not the best of the beatles but as an event and a statement it was huge at the time so in that respect it was not over rated

I don't agree they invented talking on records things like that, George Martin had been doing that for years, they nicked  a lot of ideas from less successful people but people gave them credit for inventing everything, that wasn't they're fault
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