Plastic Ono Band
is usually revered by rock critics as John Lennon's masterpiece, while the follow up Imagine
tends to be considered as a second rate, sugary produced record. Is this fair? I mean, POB has the magical combination of minimal production and supposed sincerity, all right, but how about the songs? Are them better than those on Imagine
? Actually, beyond production issues, I think that "Jealous Guy" and "Oh My Love" are better ballads than "Love" and "Look At Me". The lyrics of "How?" are as introspective as anything on POB. The nasty John is also well represented by "How Do You Sleep?". "I Don't Want To Be A Soldier" may not have the genial words of "Working Class Hero", but musically it works better as a protest song. And I still didn't mention "Imagine", the most transcendent song in John's solo catalog. Moreover, I don't mind the inclusion of catchy tunes like "Oh Yoko!", diversity is always welcome in my ears.
I usually read that POB is one the three greatest solo Beatles albums, along with Band On The Run
and All Things Must Pass
. I agree with the mention of the last two, but in my opinion the trilogy is completed by Imagine