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Author Topic: Carnival of Light finally to be released?  (Read 5998 times)

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Geoff

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #20 on: November 17, 2008, 04:10:41 PM »

Quote from: 1509
Just out of interest, who has said it's a dirge? I didn't think the 27-minute version had ever been heard outside of Abbey Road.


From Richie Unterberger:

18. "Helter Skelter, take 3 (studio outtake), July 18, 1968: Perhaps the Holy Grail of unheard Beatles outtakes is this legendary 27-minute version of "Helter Skelter," at a session also producing ten- and twelve-minute versions. In The Beatles Recording Sessions,  Mark Lewisohn noted that "each take developed into a tight and concisely played jam with long instrumental passages." The four-and-a-half-minute edit of take 2 on Anthology 3  lowered expectations, however, as even this truncated version both veered on tedium and was far inferior to the final arrangement, with its dragging tempo and rote blues-rock guitar licks. Explaining why a longer version was not chosen for the Anthology CD compilations in a 1995 Dutch interview (as seen in the bonus disc of the bootlegged director's cut of the Anthology documentary), George Martin was blunt: "I think it gets boring."


The loud, thrashing, version released on The Beatles was a remake recorded on September 9th, and it's possible that all three takes recorded on July 18 were similar to the edit of take 2 released on Anthology 3. Since it's hard to believe that George Martin and Paul would issue part of an inferior take 2 from that session if something better was available on take 3, take 3 may well be a dirge.  :)
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Joe

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #21 on: November 17, 2008, 04:37:15 PM »

The Anthology albums are full of needlessly re-edited master tapes - some of the bootleg recordings were tampered with by Apple for absolutely no logical reason, notably the pre-EMI tapes (Forthlin Road demos etc). The Unterberger book is very good on this. Including instrumental versions of Eleanor Rigby and Within You Without You instead of Carnival Of Light (as has been claimed) on Anthology 2 also suggests their judgement has been dodgy on occasion - why not give us something unreleased instead?

Either way, it'd be nice if they'd just put out the 27-minute Helter Skelter so we can hear it for ourselves - it could only make them money.
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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #22 on: November 17, 2008, 08:48:20 PM »

In my country - Brazil - has the best carnival of the word.

I want to see new photos of Beatles and George. I will go to write in Portuguese. Où en Français. Je ne parle pas Anglais.

Who speack Portuguese or French?

Where I see the photos of the Beatles?

Thanks/ Merci/ Obrigada. :-/ :-/
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Geoff

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #23 on: November 17, 2008, 11:46:34 PM »

An opinion:  :)


The Beatles' legacy? Macca should let it be
John Aizlewood / The Guardian

For one whose place in history is not so much secure as gloriously, unquestionably assured, Paul McCartney behaves as though there is some doubt. He is, lest we forget, not just any old ex-Beatle, but the Beatle. At least since John departed.

That insecurity is why he decided to rewrite history by bowdlerising Let It Be when he removed Phil Spector's production-rescue job, the one thing that made the album listenable. And it's surely why he engineered that silly hullaballoo about having some Beatles songs credited to McCartney/Lennon rather than Lennon/McCartney.

And, as if he were Gary Lightbody rather than Paul McCartney, he so desperately wants to be taken seriously. Hence the Fireman, the Liverpool Oratorio and that time he played celery with Super Furry Animals. Now, he's picked over the Beatles' carcass again and unearthed Carnival of Light, apparently an improvised 14-minute, vaguely avant-garde jam session recorded during the Penny Lane sessions. And he wants to release it. If he couldn't let Let It Be be - and in fairness, for all the pointless carnage he wrought, he'd always hated Spector's contribution - couldn't he at least show some decorum here?

If Carnival of Light sees the light of day, is it going to enhance the Beatles' standing? That's the very same Beatles who changed the world and whose influence and reputation remains undimmed. Of course it isn't. Is it going to make us think slightly less of them? In all probability, yes, and I'm inclined to trust the judgment of Ringo Starr, George Harrison and Yoko Ono, who vetoed its inclusion on Anthology and who (with Olivia Harrison standing in for George) will hopefully do their duty again this time. Carnival of Light may be the greatest 14 minutes in Beatledom and some people (ie me) are going to look pretty foolish if that's the case. Even so, I'd bet my sub-prime mortgage that it isn't and that phrase "14-minute jam session" strikes fear into the hearts of stouter men than myself. It's a soundcheck-esque rehearsal at best. At worst, it's Phish.

McCartney says it's the Beatles going "off-piste", or in other words, messing about. Frankly, I'd much rather hear them on-piste, crafting moments of genius such as Penny Lane. If Carnival of Light wasn't good enough to be released nearly 40 years ago (or on Anthology) then it's not now.

We've got the Beatles' body of work. It changed everything. Isn't that enough?

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Penny Lane

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #24 on: November 18, 2008, 12:19:58 AM »

Quote from: 1161
We've got the Beatles' body of work. It changed everything. Isn't that enough?

No.

If fans could withstand the Beatles' other "avant garde" works, not to mention their goofy and surreal Christmas records and the "Magical Mystery Tour" movie :P , then I'm sure we can handle the likes of "Carnival of Light" too.  This is a part of Beatle history, and we fans should be able to listen to it and judge it for ourselves.

Thanks for the article, Geoff. :)
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Geoff

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #25 on: November 18, 2008, 12:46:21 AM »

Quote from: 1620
If fans could withstand the Beatles' other "avant garde" works, not to mention their goofy and surreal Christmas records and the "Magical Mystery Tour" movie :P , then I'm sure we can handle the likes of "Carnival of Light" too.

That's not a bad idea: put "Carnival" on as a bonus track to an official release of the Christmas records, maybe in conjunction with the Magical Mystery Tour film?  :)

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Penny Lane

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #26 on: November 18, 2008, 12:54:17 AM »

Quote from: 1161
That's not a bad idea: put "Carnival" on as a bonus track to an official release of the Christmas records, maybe in conjunction with the Magical Mystery Tour film?  :)

LOL!!!

Throw in a free bag of hallucinogenic drugs too, and you've got yourself a deal! ;D ;D

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Geoff

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #27 on: November 18, 2008, 12:56:15 AM »

Quote from: 1620
Throw in a free bag of hallucinogenic drugs too, and you've got yourself a deal! ;D ;D

Dr Robert's?  ;D

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Sondra

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #28 on: November 18, 2008, 02:22:54 AM »

Quote from: 1161

I think it was just a casual, throwaway recording at the time it was made, and that Paul only became interested in it again later when he realized he could use it to restore his own "hip" credentials after a solo career full of soft-rock hit singles and the rock press's deification of John as the "cool" Beatle. I see his point, actually, because his popular image is as distorted and oversimplified as John's, but I doubt that a big rolling out of "Carnival Of Light" as Paul McCartney's Lost Avant Garde Masterpiece or some such would do anything but make him look silly.

.  :)

That was my point. If it was something he was really into and proud of, it would have been released back then. Like he would have let the others veto it if he really wanted to put it out?? Not bloody likely! (said in bad Seinfeld British accent)

I don't think Paul has to worry about his legacy at all. People have already come around. And there's actually been somewhat of a backlash towards Lennon. All those years of Yoko exploiting his peace and love God image has done more harm than good. Now people are looking at every little thing he ever did wrong to prove that he was human. Either way, it's oversimplifying the man. But then, he's not a man anymore. He's a product. Trademarked and everything.  :(
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Sondra

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #29 on: November 18, 2008, 02:26:53 AM »

Quote from: 1161

We've got the Beatles' body of work. It changed everything. Isn't that enough?


It's never enough. It's the Beatles. I don't care if they sat around recording themselves breathing. I want to hear it.
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Bobber

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #30 on: November 18, 2008, 07:59:06 AM »

Quote from: 1717
In my country - Brazil - has the best carnival of the word.

I want to see new photos of Beatles and George. I will go to write in Portuguese. Où en Français. Je ne parle pas Anglais.

Who speack Portuguese or French?

Where I see the photos of the Beatles?

Thanks/ Merci/ Obrigada. :-/ :-/

Hi Claudia, welcome here. To understand each other, everybody here writes (or tries to write) in English. Nobody gets attacked for writing English in a bad way (well, almost nobody  ;D ). There are French forums about the Beatles, but this one is in English. However, there's plenty of pictures to see if you just browse around.
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Joe

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #31 on: November 18, 2008, 10:21:18 AM »

John Aizlewood has always been a terrible writer with bad judgement (his Q reviews were always laughable, back when I used to read the magazine), but this is just nonsense.

Quote
And, as if he were Gary Lightbody rather than Paul McCartney, he so desperately wants to be taken seriously. Hence the Fireman, the Liverpool Oratorio and that time he played celery with Super Furry Animals. Now, he's picked over the Beatles' carcass again and unearthed Carnival of Light, apparently an improvised 14-minute, vaguely avant-garde jam session recorded during the Penny Lane sessions. And he wants to release it. If he couldn't let Let It Be be - and in fairness, for all the pointless carnage he wrought, he'd always hated Spector's contribution - couldn't he at least show some decorum here?

If Carnival of Light sees the light of day, is it going to enhance the Beatles' standing? That's the very same Beatles who changed the world and whose influence and reputation remains undimmed. Of course it isn't. Is it going to make us think slightly less of them? In all probability, yes, and I'm inclined to trust the judgment of Ringo Starr, George Harrison and Yoko Ono, who vetoed its inclusion on Anthology and who (with Olivia Harrison standing in for George) will hopefully do their duty again this time. Carnival of Light may be the greatest 14 minutes in Beatledom and some people (ie me) are going to look pretty foolish if that's the case. Even so, I'd bet my sub-prime mortgage that it isn't and that phrase "14-minute jam session" strikes fear into the hearts of stouter men than myself. It's a soundcheck-esque rehearsal at best. At worst, it's Phish.

Firstly, the Super Furry Animals thing (on Receptacle For The Respectable) was a repeat of the time he chewed carrots on The Beach Boys' song Vegetables in, I think, 1967. How is that wanting to be taken seriously?

Additionally, McCartney has been talking about Carnival Of Light since at least 2002, when Mark Ellen asked him about it on Rocking Vicar. He was also considering playing it ahead of his appearance at the Roundhouse at this year's BBC Electric Proms, though I don't know if that happened. It's not as though he's suddenly unearthed it, or is picking over The Beatles' carcass.

Thirdly, wasn't it just George Harrison who vetoed it? I thought they needed a unanimous decision before anything went on Anthology, though I might be wrong about that. I'm not sure all other parties blocked it though.

I simply don't understand why anyone would not want to hear unreleased, unheard Beatles music. Even if it's bad, move on; nothing gained, nothing lost. :)
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Joe

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #32 on: November 18, 2008, 10:29:50 AM »

Oh, one other thing to add. I stumbled upon this last night, an interview with Geoff Emerick.

http://www.earcandymag.com/geoffemerick-2006.htm

Quote
E.C.: You also mention "Carnival of Light" in your book. Was any of this used in Paul
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BlueMeanie

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #33 on: November 18, 2008, 11:00:53 AM »

Quote from: 1509
Additionally, McCartney has been talking about Carnival Of Light since at least 2002, when Mark Ellen asked him about it on Rocking Vicar. He was also considering playing it ahead of his appearance at the Roundhouse at this year's BBC Electric Proms, though I don't know if that happened. It's not as though he's suddenly unearthed it, or is picking over The Beatles' carcass.

Thirdly, wasn't it just George Harrison who vetoed it? I thought they needed a unanimous decision before anything went on Anthology, though I might be wrong about that. I'm not sure all other parties blocked it though.


It's been talked about since the Anthology series. So that 12 years. And as far as I recall, it was just George that vetoed.
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Geoff

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #34 on: November 18, 2008, 11:35:17 AM »

Quote from: 1509
I didn't know Revolution 9 had material from Carnival Of Light in it.

I hadn't heard that before, either.  :)
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Geoff

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #35 on: November 18, 2008, 12:22:53 PM »

Quote from: 216
It's never enough. It's the Beatles. I don't care if they sat around recording themselves breathing. I want to hear it.

I'm with the put-it-all-out faction myself, despite any reservations about personal agendas (irrelevant) and the probable quality of remaining items (not high). Provided they're presented as interesting leftovers and not the best things since "She Loves You" or Sgt Pepper, I don't see the harm in putting out more outtakes. The Beatles disbanded nearly forty years ago, and this far along they might as well fill in the little gaps that remain.  :)

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BlueMeanie

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #36 on: November 18, 2008, 12:29:16 PM »

I think it would be good if they did what Purple Chick have done. Though 12 discs for The White Album is probably a little excessive. Not to mention the 82 discs of Get Back sessions!
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Geoff

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #37 on: November 18, 2008, 12:58:49 PM »

Quote from: 483
I think it would be good if they did what Purple Chick have done. Though 12 discs for The White Album is probably a little excessive. Not to mention the 82 discs of Get Back sessions!

You do very quickly get into an argument about how much more is worthwhile. My own list would include The Beatles At The Hollywood Bowl, Get Back (1969 mix), the Christmas flexi discs, and an odd assortment of studio leftovers such as "Carnival Of Light" and the audition take of "Love Of The Loved." None of it's necessary after Anthology of course; it would just be nice to have it on the shelf and in good quality sound.  :)
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Joe

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #38 on: November 18, 2008, 01:54:17 PM »

Not wanting to steer this thread too far in a different direction, but don't forget the remastered CD reissues are on their way, hopefully next year. Wouldn't it be great if each one was accompanied by a disc of alternative versions, with outtakes, live versions, demos, the full Decca audition/Kinfauns demos etc? They could put one together for each album without too much trouble - the material is mostly out there already but I bet Apple have some goodies that nobody's heard. They could even do a DVD with the promo videos, Our World, A Day In The Life and so on.

The Sgt Pepper one could include some of Lennon's Strawberry Fields/It's Not Too Bad demos, plus Carnival Of Light, obviously. I'm sure there are different versions of Reprise, Fixing A Hole etc, which would be fascinating to hear.

There's *loads* of unreleased stuff out there. The idea that Apple put out all the good stuff with Anthology's not true. EMI were peddling that line since the group split up anyway, in part to throw fans off the bootleg scent. It didn't work  ;)

Alternatively, if there's no way to release stuff like Carnival without the hype getting too much, why not just give it away? Or dip a toe into the water of digital downloads? It's not like anything The Beatles could do would harm their official sales these days.
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Geoff

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Re: Carnival of Light finally to be released?
« Reply #39 on: November 18, 2008, 03:28:06 PM »

Quote from: 1509
Not wanting to steer this thread too far in a different direction, but don't forget the remastered CD reissues are on their way, hopefully next year. Wouldn't it be great if each one was accompanied by a disc of alternative versions, with outtakes, live versions, demos, the full Decca audition/Kinfauns demos etc? They could put one together for each album without too much trouble - the material is mostly out there already but I bet Apple have some goodies that nobody's heard. They could even do a DVD with the promo videos, Our World, A Day In The Life and so on.

The Sgt Pepper one could include some of Lennon's Strawberry Fields/It's Not Too Bad demos, plus Carnival Of Light, obviously.

That's certainly the sort of reissue I'd like to see, and Purple Chick has shown the way. It's probably too much for most people, but even so, the White album excepted, straightforward two-disc sets of the rest are easy to imagine: mono/stereo on disc one (no monos of Abbey Road or Let It Be, of course), with associated singles and outtakes on disc two. Magical Mystery Tour and Yellow Submarine could be folded into one set, following PC's example. You would have the singles and albums along with a working history of what went into making them, in a not-too-extravagant format.  :)
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