Album no. 42/1001
It’s old mates Lennon and McCartney again, only this time they’re writing all the songs! This is actually the soundtrack to the movie A Hard Day’s Night.
This is the only Beatles album where Lennon and McCartney wrote every single song, no covers or songs by Ringo or George. They weren’t messing around either, the longest song is only 2.43 and a couple are under 2 minutes.
Have you listened to this album before?
NK: I have, but really all I remember is the title track. I’ve seen the movie as well, but barely remember that either.
CL: Aside from the title track and ‘Can’t Buy Me Love’, I haven’t heard anything else on this album. Will it live up to the last Beatles album we listened to? I’m hoping so.
NK: ‘Can’t Buy Me Love’. The title track is good as well, I quite like ‘I Should Have Known Better’ with the harmonica intro, and ‘Any Time At All’ is pretty sweet too. I really don’t like ‘And I Love Her’, the start of it sounds like something off Getz/Gilberto and it doesn’t improve much.
CL: It would seem that no, this does not live up to the last Beatles album. Sorry. ‘Any Time At All’ is a good one. It’s probably the only standout, though – it’s a bit of a monotonous album to be honest. Maybe it would help if I watched the accompanying movie?
NK: I remember enjoying the movie, but if you asked me now I couldn’t tell you a thing about it. We should start a list of music movies to watch.
When would be the best time to listen to this?
NK: I listened to this walking home in the rain, and it’s not right for that, too poppy and upbeat. There’s something about how innocent this sounds, all the melodies are really bright and happy, I think it needs sunshine.
CL: When you’ve had a hard day’s night. And you’ve been working like a dog. And you should be sleeping like a log. Obviously.
Why has this album been included on the list?
NK: Imagine how big The Beatles must have been in 1964 to have a movie made about them (and then Help in 1965 as well!). How do you think a Car Seat Headrest movie would go today? I mean, I’d see it, don’t get me wrong, but I can’t imagine it would have the same combination of commercial and critical success that A Hard Day’s Night did. Not every song on this is a winner, but they wrote all the songs which was a pretty big deal. I looked it up, and Beatles For Sale came out the same year! They stuck some covers on that, but it’s still a crazy output.
CL: I WOULD ABSOLUTELY SEE A CAR SEAT HEADREST MOVIE! But I take your point. It’s not something that works today. They were certainly prolific. But I’m not really sure why it’s been included… there’s not that much of a different vibe between this and the last Beatles we heard. JUST GET TO BLOODY SGT PEPPER ALREADY!
Will you be listening again?
NK: I doubt it. But that’s on The Beatles, if they hadn’t gone on to make so many more interesting albums maybe I’d get into this more.
CL: Look, after the last few albums that, really, have been pretty rubbish, this was a nice change. BUT after the super great time With The Beatles, I was really expecting bigger and better things. I was disappointed listening to this! There’s a lot of filler and not much killer.