Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Sociological Analysis of the GTA V Trailer

Gaming's Biggest Franchise Looks To Get All Sorts of Political in Newest Installment

 
Last week, Rockstar Games unveiled the debut trailer for the next installment in the incredibly popular, incredibly controversial and incredibly lucrative Grand Theft Auto series.

And it, in short, was freaking awesome.

I’ve said this a couple of times before, but there hasn’t been a greater work of social satire in the last 15 years than the GTA games. Sure, all of the concerned parents groups and video game hating politicians may consider it to be the downfall of American exceptionalism, but what do those lunk-heads know about the art of parody? Take it from me, a guy with social satire genetics pumping through my veins - the guys behind GTA are some apt, APT social commentators. In fact, I would go as far as to say that the GTA games are the DEFINTIVE satirical work of the post 9-11 generation, a culture-skewering piece of art on par with “Dr. Strangelove” or “The Simpsons.”

Grand Theft Auto 3 was commentary on the mediocrity and uniformity of pre-9/11 urbanization. Vice City was a critical evaluation of the political excesses of the 1980s, while San Andreas was an allegory about the disenfranchisement of young African Americans and the hypocrisies of the liberal media. Grand Theft Auto IV, called “The Godfather of video games” by numerous publications, was about the influence of immigration, technology and mass consumerism on our cultural identities. Of course, if all you ever did was get your video game news from Fox or CNN, you would think that these games were nothing but hooker-murdering-with-golf-club-simulators. Imagine that: the mainstream media having no idea what’s going on the minds of mainstream Americans.

And so, the trailer for Grand Theft Auto V appears to be continuing in that steep, venerable lineage of social commentary. Although the trailer was only about a minute and a half long, it certainly packed a LOT of satirical elements, commenting on everything from the ongoing economic recession to the fact that Fed Ex can’t ever seem to get your packages delivered on time. So, who’s up for a second-by-second analysis of some of the finer points of the trailer?

Thanks to GTA V, I haven't been this pumped about alternative energies since that one Keanu Reeves movie about cold fusion came out!


00:00:007 – 00:00:10 – Don’t let the California vibe fool you, this ISN’T a game that seems to paint the Golden State as some sort of fantastical amusement-land like in oh so many other titles. Pay very close attention to the sidewalk , especially – just like the real Cali, the streets are cluttered and clogged with litter and debris. Not only is this a nice touch of realism, it may also be indicative of a new physics engine for the game. Does that mean we’re in store for fully shaded and fully rendered man-boob physics? My, we can only hope…

00:00:11 – 00:00:15 – It wouldn’t be L.A. without smog, would it? If this thing wanted to really replicate the California landscape, there would be more CGI haze in this one than the entire “Call of Duty” games combined

00:00:16 – 00:00:22 – Golfing, water skiing, backpacking. . .not only probable mini-games, but quite possibly in-game activities that influence your relations with non-playable characters. Note the characters holding hands and the international flags at the golf course – methinks that at some point, you may have to do a little social engineering with the virtual denizens of San Andreas, much the same way you did in “L.A. Noir.” 

00:00:23 – 00:00:26 – Apparently, one of the new character modifications for the franchise involves body piercings. And since its California, there will probably be an option to sign up for a government subsidized sex-change operation, too. . .

00:00:27 – 00:00:35 – Windmills, Pilates, and a cultural obsession with health and fitness, coupled with street crime, hyper poverty, and crass materialism. Where do these Rockstar guys come up with this stuff? 


00:00:43 – 00:00:46 – And the issue of illegal immigration? Or workers’ rights? Or environmentalism?

...if it were Arizona, they just would have opened fire instead.

00:00:47 – 00:00:51 – Clearly a Marxist take on the dissatisfaction of the U.S. laborer. Or maybe, the guys at Rockstar really, really think exterminators charge too much for their services. 

00:00:52 – 00:01:00 – Honestly, I’m kind of disappointed that they aren’t tackling the issue of the economic downturn and its influence on modern society for the new game. . .

00:01:01 – 00:01:08 – For those of you that aren’t hardcore sociology nerds, sleep easy: I’m pretty sure that somewhere amidst all of that social commentary, that’s probably a really, really fun action adventure game, too. 

00:01:09 – 00:01:25 - - Here’s something cool about the song used in the trailer, “Ogden’s Nut Gone Flake” by the English band Small Faces, according to Wikipedia, with relevant passages bolded for your pleasure:

“The B-side is based on an original fairy tale about a boy called Happiness Stan, narrated in his unique ‘Unwinese’ gobbledgook by Stanley Unwin, who picked up modern slang from the band and incorporated it into the surreal narrative...the plot of the fairy tale is that Stan  looks up in the sky and sees only half the moon, he sets out on a quest to search for the missing half. Along the way he saves a fly from starvation, and in gratitude the insect tells him of someone who can answer his question and also tell him the philosophy of life itself. With his magic power Stan intones, "If all the flies were one fly, what a great enormous fly-follolloper that would bold," and the fly grows to gigantic proportions. Seated on the giant fly's back Stan takes a psychedelic journey to the cave of Mad John the hermit, who explains that the moon's disappearance is only temporary, and demonstrates by pointing out that Stan has spent so long on his quest that the moon is now full again. He then sings Stan a cheerful song about the meaning of life.”

Apparently, the "meaning of life" entails performing jewel heists while dressed like Ghostbusters.
Could it be that Rockstar culled the plotline for GTA V from an almost 50 year old prog rock album?  Yeah, it does sound pretty out there, but seeing as how this is the same company that made video games out of the 1999 WTO Protests in Seattle AND a hyper violent re-imagining of an archaic Ah-Nald vehicle, who is to say that the crew is above a little allegorical gaming?

Of course, there are still PLENTY of mysteries surrounding the game, from it’s actual release date to how it will implement online play. This much, however, we know for certain:

Whenever and however this one gets released, it’s going to result in a LOT of squandered free time for the coveted 18-34 demographic here in the States.

Employers of America, you have been duly noted.

46 comments:

  1. They sucked in a lot of ways. In the beginning, when they started recording, they were a watered down rockabilly and a girl group cover band- the 1950s rock n roll, the rockabilly kind, far out rocked most if not all of their songs. They played with a hard edge in clubs with their leather jackets but sold out to make the mainstream and became what is known today as a boy band. They softened and watered down rock n roll, removing most of it's claws and teeth. They, or the media, created a myth that they saved rock n roll, but in reality they water it down and rounded and softened it's edges. Even their 1962 drummer change was meant to water them down, with Ringo being a softer more mellow drummer than Pete Best. One can understand why when the Beatles arrived in America and heard SURFIN BIRD by the Trashmen they said they hated it. How can anyone but someone who sucks hate that song? As musicians they were average and sometimes mediocre. They rarely had guitar solos in their songs and then it was subdued, much of this was because they were way overproduced by George Martin. Just listen to their Bootleg BBC recordings, not the official releases that are watered down, and you can hear them playing without the constraints their producer George Martin put on them, and then you can hear them putting back some of the harder edge. I can't go on forever here because there are far more issues than the writer of this blog has written and all of them negative. I'll do one more, oh such great philanthropic people they are? - they were assholes. They were terrible people. They stabbed a lot of people in the back to get to their sell out point. They were liars, exaggerates, manipulators, song thieves, in some case bullies (See Turtles guitar player who they insulted so badly he retired from music, and they did it just for kicks), they were cocky, haughty, thought they were godlike, believed their own hype, egomaniacs, poor George was very rarely allowed to do the lead guitar on their songs, John and Paul mostly. Most of their songs suck... Oh I forgot... there's a lot more but no time, too much more, far too much.

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  2. Here's another comment while I have a few free moments. We've heard said, "they were great innovators who paved the way for other bands, first using guitar feedback, first concept album, first heavy metal, first to write their own songs, first heavy rock band, great ground breakers, studio wizards." and of course every bit of that is bullshit. Number one, you'd be hard pressed to convince me they paved the way at anything, except for maybe a cutsie hair style that is popular today, particularly with boy bands, see Justin Bieber whose first hair style was a Beatles haircut, so when it comes to the hair revolution, they were cutting edge. First guitar feedback? forget about it. I FEEL FINE was beat out by 8 years by Benny Joys 1956 single STEADY WITH BETTY and a far more heavy rocker it is too. As far as the song I FEEL FINE goes, I like the guitar riff, and it's fun to play on guitar, but otherwise what a terribly wimpy song, and I heard they stole the riff from an early sixties RB song. First rock concept album? Forget about it. Of course Zappa's Freak Out album beat it by a year but there were others, such as The Big Bopper's Wedding Album, Chuck Berry's Berries album, etc. First Heavy Metal, of course the obvious is Blue Cheer, but we also have lesser known bands like The Attack, and of course the really hardcore 50s rockabilly smokes the entire Beatles catalog, so what can I say there. First Psychedelic band? Forget about it. They did a couple of psychedelic songs on Revolver but the first pure psychedelic band was The 13th Floor Elevators, who did it before the Sgt Pepper album by almost a year, and they did far far better. Their first album The Psychedelic Experience, August 1966, put the Beatles to shame. First band to write there own songs, no, not close. They were beaten out by Eddie Cochran, The Crickets, Chuck Berry, Benny Joy, Bo Diddley, Gene Vincent, Ritchie Valens, I could have list a mile long but I don't have the time. Studio wizardry? Come on, Abbey Road was a junk pile studio compared to everything we had here in the states. That's why the Stones right away came here to record. The Beatles at Abbey Road were still using 4 track recording equipment up until 1968. In the USA, even recording studios in remote areas of Minnesota and Texas had 8 track recording studios by 1964. Garage bands in America were recording their classics on far more advanced equipment than The Beatles were using. The Beatles had to use studio tricks such as bounce down, to cover up for these inadequacies and still get an acceptable sound. Just think, The Beatles recorded Revolver in 1966 on antiquated 4 track stereo recording equipment, while at the same time in the USA, The Count Five recorded its PSYCHOTIC REACTION on 8 track recording equipment. By the time Abbey Road caught up with 8 tracks in 1969, the USA recording studios had already moved on to then state of the art 16 track equipment

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  3. And face it, they did invent, or at least nurture the genra of what would become known as Bubblegum rock, a forerunner of Boy Bands. Face it, when they got rid of the leather jackets and tamed the sound, they sold out.

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  4. I do think, to be honest, which I have been here, that the Beatles were once a really great live band, back when they played the clubs. You can still hear the remnants of a really good live band on the Beatles BBC bootlegs. Everything after Ringo joined was "let's get on stage, play a generic show, and get the hell out of here. I can't believe The Remains opened for The Beatles on their last tour in 1966. I'm sure the haughty Beatles didn't even bother to listen to The Remains album. I heard the Fab 4 exalted ones snubbed them during the tour, making them keep their distance and travel separately. If the crowd was capable of actually hearing the music, they might have heard a band that out rocked the junk the Beatles were shoveling out live at the time. The Remains thought getting on The Beatles tour was a way that might get radio stations to actually play their music. But it was to their misfortune the era of pay to play. Which is why in 1966, shit like RED RUBBER BALL would get saturation radio play and DON'T LOOK BACK by The Remains would get no radio play. Heck, they'd play The Beatles GOOD DAY SUNSHINE 500 times before they would play a Remains song.

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  5. They were way overrated. Most of their albums had very little rock n roll on them. Take one of their most praised albums, Revolver. It has only two good songs, at least one a classic, TAXMAN, which is a great song and still holds up today, and TOMORROW NEVER KNOWS, which is pretty good psych, but can't touch what the 13th Floor Elevators were doing at that time. Aside from those two, the rest of the album doesn't hold up at all, in fact it's like a card castle in the wind. A lot of milk toast crap or pretentious shit. SHE SAID SHE SAID has some guitar moments but gets kind of wimpy for the most part, overall it's a mostly bad album. But critics and brainwashed Beatlemania sufferers will say it's 14 classic songs. In fact, they have only a handful of good songs total. Come on, people with Beatlemania are delusional. How many times have you Beatlemaniacs actually listened to YOUR MOTHER SHOULD KNOW. I'd rather listen to cats fucking on a tin roof for 36 hours than ever hear that song again. That goes for other garbage, like GOOD DAY SUNSHINE, FOR NO ONE, YELLOW SUBMARINE, HERE THERE AND EVERYWHERE, LONG LONG LONG, MARTHA MY DEAR, etc etc, I could go on and on but listen to any of those and get sick, there are many many more.

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  6. I've read a lot of the comments you've gotten. Aren't these Beatles fans sick and delusional? They're like moonies or cult members, brainwashed. They don't call it mania for nothing. I've heard the blind adulation of this band in comparable to that of heart throb Valentino back the 1920s. And the writers and biographers of the band, some are brutally honest, like that guy Goldman, while most whitewash the band shamelessly.

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  7. Another myth, all their songs are great, no filler on their albums. Please... their albums are mostly filler. Most of their songs are shit. Here's a review of their second album: THE BEATLES album WITH THE BEATLES short review. Wow is this a bad album, and I don't mean bad as in good. First, it suffers like most of the Beatles albums suffered in those days, from poor recording quality. At the time, Abbey Road studios was using recording equipment that most US studios had abandoned by 1958, most US studios having moved to 8 track recording facilities by 1964. This one was recorded on 2 track at Abbey Road, making for a quick mono mix of the two and an absurd stereo mix of vocals coming out of one speaker and the instruments coming out of the other. In addition, it was quickly recorded. Once again, George Martin shaves off the rough edges and by now you sense that maybe the band has forgotten they ever had any rough edges at all. All I've Got To Do and It Won't Be Long are hopelessly mediocre bubble rock, love songs. All My Loving and Don't Bother Me, the first another bubble gum song and this time with a country music guitar solo, the second is another love song, this one of the moody variety, and I would have to admit here that Don't Bother Me is a good song, albeit it's not rock n roll, on this album. Little Child is an attempt to emulate Motown music and might even be better than mediocre with a Motown girl group singing it. Till There was you, hopeless cover version love song, Please Mr Postman is another attempt at the girl group Motown stuff, original is far better. To make this quicker, side two, an average Chuck Berry cover, followed by another sappy bubble gum track, Hold Me Tight, more Motown with You Really Got A Hold On Me, and one of their better covers, and then I Wanna Be Your Man would have been a good rocker for them if they hadn't given the vocals to novelty singer Starr, which turned it into a silly ditty, Stones version is better. Devil in You Heart hopeless filler, Not A Second Time should have been given to Tom Jones, Money is probably the best track on the album but it is not great, Martin shaved off too many of it's rough edges, see BBC bootleg versions that sound better. Overall, not a good album by any standard.

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  8. Good musicians, no doubt, very good at best. Great musicians, come on... John and Paul continuously distrusted or disagreed with most of everything that George and Ringo played on their instruments. Paul from FOR SALE on, constantly was rerecording Ringo's and George's bit. When The Beatles did have a lead guitar break, and that was on very few Beatles tracks, half the time it was john or Paul doing the lead guitar. On the drums, they were always dissatisfied with Ringo. First they didn't like what he played on I FEEL FINE and Paul redid the drums for the song after Ringo went home. Paul was a control freak and no one could satisfy him. Sgt Pepper could be said to be Paul's first solo effort, or at least close to it. He has the first and last track and plays half the drums and lead guitar. Paul does the drums on Sgt Pepper Reprise, A Day In The Life, Lovely Rita, Fixing A Hole and of course Indian Musicians do the drums on Within Without You. John does the drums on Benefit of Mr Kite. Paul does the lead guitar on both Sgt Pepper songs, and Fixing a Hole. John does the lead guitar on Good Morning Good Morning. This left George with the lead guitar work on Getting Better. And Ringo played the drums on With A Little Help From My Friends, Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds, Good Morning Good Morning, Getting Better, Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band, and When I'm Sixty Four.

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  9. Does it bother anyone besides me that they gave up the rough punk image to wear suits and ties, looking more like today's boy bands? It would shock you how much they tamed the sound and not just the look. Face it, they sold out.

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  10. Over the next 20 years I expect the mass hysteria that has propagated the Beatles popularity, will start to nose dive and by 2035 start to fade rapidly. By 2050 they will be reduced to an off and on trivia question on Jeopardy. And by 2070, people will be asking just what those 20th century people thought they were doing.

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  11. I would like to know one thing The Beatles did first, one innovative thing that was relevant, besides wearing the sugar bowl haircut. I admit, their influence on hair fashion is unequaled by anyone, but musically? Name one.

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  12. Imagine this form of hell, if you will. You wake in a small room with a tattered couch and a coffee table. In the corner, locked behind shatter proof glass, is a CD player. It comes on and the following songs begin to play over and over and over and over again for eternity: YOUR MOTHER SHOULD KNOW / WILD HONEY PIE / YOU WON'T SEE ME / I DON'T WANT TO SPOIL THE PARTY / MARTHA MY DEAR / REVOLUTION NUMBER NINE / HONEY DON'T Ringo version / LET IT BE / DIG IT / THE INNER LIGHT / DON'T PASS ME BY / LONG LONG LONG / IT'S ONLY LOVE / P.S. I LOVE YOU / TWO OF US / HERE THERE AND EVERYWHERE / WHEN I'M SIXTY FOUR / BENEFIT OF MR KITE / GIRL / YES IT IS / MAXWELL'S SILVER HAMMER / ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE / I WANT YOU / SAVOY TRUFFLE / I'LL BE BACK / TILL THERE WAS YOU / MICHELLE... Thinking about this anymore will give me nightmares...

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  13. 1960s garage bands and British Freakbeat bands that out rocked The Beatles, WIMPLE WINCH, WE THE PEOPLE, 13th FLOOR ELEVATORS, ZAKARY THAKS, THE ATTACK, BOHEMIAN VENDETTA, THE EYES, THE SONICS, THE CHOCOLATE WATCHBAND, GONN, THE REMAINS, THE MONKS, THE STANDELLS, THE SMOKE, THE CREATION, THE EASYBEATS, THE FLIES, THE DOWNLINERS SECT, THE MOURNING REIGN, ONE IN A MILLION and a lot more. Just listening to these bands, most of which existed between 1964 - 1968, will help break the Beatlemania spell.

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  14. Once again, how can these guys hate a song like SURFIN BIRD by The Trashmen. It was better than the vast majority of the Beatles songs and at least as good as the few that are left. Be honest with me Beatles fan who happens to read this. What would you rather listen to, SURFIN BIRD or ELEANOR RIGBY?

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  15. ROCK N ROLL SONGS FROM 1955 to 1959 that out-rocked most if not all of The Beatles Songs, and I won't use the obvious ones like Chuck Berry. Bing Day I CAN'T HELP IT, Benny Joy STEADY WITH BETTY, Eddie Cochran SOMETHING ELSE, Johnny Burnette and The Rock N Roll Trio TRAIN KEPT A ROLLIN, Doug Dickens RAW DEAL, Dick Penner CINDY LOU, Hank Mizel JUNGLE ROCK, The Phantom LOVE ME, Dale Vaughn HOW CAN YOU BE SO MEAN TO ME, Dale Hawkins SUSIE Q, Joe Clay DUCK TAIL, Jack Scott THE WAY I WALK, Tommy Blake F-FOLDING MONEY, Ronnie Allen JUVENILE DELINQUENT, Conway Twitty I VIBRATE, Jerry Dove PINK BOW TIE, Joyce Green BLACK CADILLAC, Lou Josie WHY DID YOU LEAVE ME, Doug Powell JEANNIE WITH THE DARK BLUE EYES... I could go on with this all night, I've barely scratched the surface. All of these songs are far better than any Beatles music and farther ahead of their time than Beatles music. The Beatles took the music backward, not ahead. One listen to each of these songs will tell you that, unless you're under the trance or mania.

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  16. One joker on here tried to say The Monkees were the first boy-band, not The Beatles, but as anyone who knows their history, The Monkees were a copy of the Beatles, and one look at their boy band movie A HARD DAY'S NIGHT shows The Monkees were trying to copy it. Go figure that out.

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  17. Too many ballads, mostly a pop group that dabbled in rock from time to time. They did play a little harder with some tracks on Their White Album and Abbey Road, but nothing original or ahead of it's time. One song they stole from Chuck Berry, stealing his 1958 song YOU CAN'T CATCH ME and turning it into COME TOGETHER, and Lennon was quoted as saying he knew he was stealing it. Well he got sued for his theft.

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  18. Helter Skelter (released November 1968) was the first heavy metal song? If wanted to spend the time, I could probably get come up with hundreds maybe a thousand songs that came before it, and out-rocked. I'll mention a few off the top of my head and try not to repeat any bands, GONN Blackout of Gretley (8/66), THE ATTACK Strange House (3/68), 13th FLOOR ELEVATORS Step Inside This House (10/67), THE EASYBEATS She's So Fine (4/65), JOHNNY BURNETTE ROCK N ROLL TRIO Train Kept A Rollin (3/56), JACK SCOTT Go Wild Little Sadie ((3/57), THE SONICS Strychnine (3/56)... don't have time for more but could go on all day.

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  19. They loved their drummer Ringo Starr so much? So the whitewash patrol spins it today. But spin back in time to early June 1962, when John, Paul, and George decided to get rid fellow band member and drummer Pete Best, and to do it behind his back (I said they were assholes), because they were jealous of his popularity and were afraid EMI might feature him as head of the group. (Today the whitewash has spun it as he was an inferior drummer and fans were too drunk to notice). The whitewash movies and documentaries shows an immediate drummer change with Ringo. The reality is, they played 72 more shows, an average of 2 hours hours each, with Pete Best as their drummer, a period of 11 weeks, all the while searching for a new drummer behind his back. During that time they asked a lot of drummers to join, one was session great Bobby Graham. They finally broke down and asked Ringo Starr for lack of anyone better, figuring Starr would at least get lost in the background. For weeks during their live shows John Lennon could be heard from time to time turning around and yelling at Starr, "COME ON RITCHIE,GET WITH IT, PLAY LOUDER."

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  20. The only reason they didn't foist sessions musicians in to play for the Beatles on their records is that The Beatles weren't originally taken very seriously, being regulated to EMI's Joke label, Parlaphone, which recorded mostly comedy records, and their budget was very low, too low for sessions musicians. It fact, they didn't have the money for a sessions drummer. When the Beatles came down to record LOVE ME DO again on 9/4/62 they still hadn't hired a sessions drummer and Pete Best would have played on that version too. But by then they had changed the arrangement of LOVE ME DO over the previous three months, worked out with Pete on Drums (what a back stabbing). They decided after hearing Starr's version they didn't like his drumming and hired a sessions drummer for 9/11/62. But the real reason Starr was able to play on the subsequent album session was money, and the songs were so simple they figured he could handle it. When the Beatles made it a big hit with their bubblegum classic PLEASE PLEASE ME, the label decided to leave well enough alone, and not disturb the chemistry with professional musicians. In other words, the Beatles number one hit gave them political capital at EMI. Other band on larger labels weren't so lucky. Bands like HERMAN'S HERMITS / THE ANIMALS / THEM / DAVE CLARK FIVE / DONOVAN / KINKS and many many others, were mostly if not all the same sessions musicians on every record. The did the same thing on the major labels in the USA. All the mainstream bands had the same musicians on nearly every recording.

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  21. I'll do a small revision here. The Sonic song I mentioned as out rocking Helter Skelter is suppose to be (3/65) not 3/56

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  22. I keep seeing comments about how great a live band The post LOVE ME DO (10/62) Beatles were, and how fantastically they performed in all those 25 to 30 concerts. I've heard about the primitive sound systems, no foldback speakers, and not one of them mentioned they didn't even bring along their own microphones, letting the venue supply them instead. And of course, counted hear themselves play with all the screaming girls. One way or another, I don't think they cared, or gave a damn. Sometimes they were into it sometimes they weren't. Foldback speakers were available at the time. You can see them at some of their shows, such as the Hollywood Bowl and Atlanta. The sound systems of those two show were pretty good, too, for their time. Sounds systems were crappy and primitive throughout the 60s, especially in the big stadiums. Heck, even at Woodstock in 1969, most of the crowd couldn't hear the music because of the primitive sound system, and that was three years after The Beatles stopped touring in 66. But this talk of how these shows prove that The Beatles were then a great live band is a mass delusion on the part of Beatlesmaniacs. For one, by the 1966 tour, The Beatles could have had a better sound system and foldback speakers at ever show, but refused both. Every effort to get them to play beyond 12 songs in 30 minutes was met with stauch refusal. They wanted to get on get it over go back to the hotel. Even the Monkees at that time were doing one hour shows. Brian Wilson, the leader of the Beach Boys, offered to let them borrow their personal sound system, one designed and created by Wilson to enhance the sound at live shows, but the Beatles were like, why bother. On their last tour in 66, they didn't even both to do any songs off their new album Revolver, why bother. Bootlegs show that on some of these shows, particularly in 1966, the Beatles were playing out of tune, sometimes in the wrong key, drumming was out of time, and a lot of the time the lyrics were badly flubbed. One show, John Lennon, instead of singing "I'm in love with her and I feel fine," which is the songs chorus, Lennon instead sings "I'm in love with me and I feel fine" throughout the song. The audience never noticed. In Japan, while performing DAY TRIPPER, John forgets to change chords and plays an E chord instead of an A, and it sounds pretty bad because the rest of the bad remembered to change to A, a sour mash up you might say, very sour. And on the song I FEEL FINE, not only are the lyrics flubbed but Ringo's drumming is somewhere off in space. It seems on this song he never gets it like the record, hmm, not even close. At the beginning of the first Shea Stadium concert in August 65, the clinkers are so bad that they sound like an out of tune salvation army band. Ah, alas, but what has happened to create the myth of all these great shows. This is where the recent whitewashes come in, particularly with the Howard film, but there are other culprits. All those blemishes and embarrassingly poor play are cover up and dusted over. In many case the clinkers and poor play are covered by overdubs in the studio or more often than not, other concerts where they didn't blow it are dubbed over them. For example, on the recent re-release of the Shea Stadium show, recordings of the Hollywood bowl show were overdubbed over the performance to hide the truth, that they played like shit. Only footage of the evening show in Japan are now shown (gotta get the bootleg to hear the afternoon), because the afternoon show has most of the songs being performed off key, out of time, and out of tune, including missed chord changes. If Howard couldn't overdub over the mess, then he cherry picked out the better performances. Finally, these Beatlemaniacs seem to have not heard any other live bands from 64 to 66 except for the Beatles. If they bothered to check out some of the others, the might find a lot of bands performing live with much more energy and skill that The Beatles.

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  23. Maybe they should have tried to do a cover version of SURFIN BIRD.

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  24. How about how they saved rock n roll because it was dying. Ha ha. Let's see, of course these jokers are talking about mainstream rock n roll, so I won't go too deep here. The Beatles big splash in America happened on February 9th, 1964. with I WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND being released one month earlier, I think December 26th, 1963. Before that they were unheard of in America except for the few, and of course by people over in England and Europe, and without today's mass media, that was like on another planet. November 13, 1963 we saw SURFIN BIRDS released, and frankly, in my opinion it out-rocks I WANT TO HOLD YOU HAND. On April 6th, 1963 The Kingsmen released LOUIE LOUIE, which again far out rocked I WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND. The Beatles saved nothing. Heck, I even like the August 1962 song MONSTER MASH better than I WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND. I WANT TO HOLD YOUR HAND is a sissy bubblegum song.

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  25. ALL TOGETHER NOW that Beatles song SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  26. The Beatles started the British Invasion. Well, not intentionally. Of course the other labels would want to get in on the gimick.

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  27. PENNY LANE - it just doesn't hold up very well. For one, it doesn't rock at all, and sounds like something that should be sung by Doris Day.

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  28. YOUR MOTHER SHOULD KNOW. Is there anyone out there who can say they have actually listened to this song more than a handful of times in their life? I've heard it maybe six times, probably another dozen times that I heard it but didn't really listen because I was subconsciously blocking it out. Also, when I did listen to it it was just to try and figure out why this band would record such a piece of crap. I could write and record a better song in my office, stone drunk, and with cheap tape machine to boot. Obviously they didn't have anything better to record and resorted to concocting this filler. I can't think of a better way to get a new listener to hate the Beatles than letting them make this song their first Beatles experience. I'm willing to bet that most if not all of you folks suffering from the mania pick of the needle and move it to the next song or hit the next track button every time this song comes on.

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  29. BIRTHDAY Why do I hate this? I hate birthday songs and the riff is mediocre, plus Linda and Yoko sing backing vocals on this one. Nuff said.

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  30. GLASS ONION. The only thing that stands out about the song are those outro guitar chords at the end, some interesting and very rarely used guitar chords. The rest of the song? well, forget that this is a Beatles song and picture it as a song from another band, irrespective of your mania affliction. Listen hard and listen good and the first thing that will come to your mind is "I ain't listening to that piece of shit again." For all you folks who are unfamiliar with 1950s rock n roll, and that includes the vast majority of Beatles fans I've met, during the 1950s, performers often mentioned and referred to other songs of their own and other bands, in the lyrics of their songs. One of those songs Lennon said he was trying to emulate here was a Larry Williams song called SHORT FAT FANNY, from 1958, a song that mentions about a dozen other rock and roll songs in it's lyrics, including BONY MORONIE, PEGGY SUE, BLUE SUEDE SHOES, HEARTBREAK HOTEL, and TUTTIE FRUITIE to name some he used. Lennon failed in his attempt to emulate that. Maybe if he'd referred something other than Beatles songs, such as mentioning SEASON OF THE WITCH or RUBY TUESDAY it might have then worked. Instead, it is White Album filler of the worst kind.

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  31. Rotten songs from the album RUBBER SOUL, Girl, Run For Your Life, Michelle, What Goes on, You Won't See Me, If I Needed Someone (another stupid love song), Think For Yourself (a mediocre song) ... ah, they are so bad. Drive My Car is the only rock n roll song and is also the best song on the album. Much of the rest of the album is wanna be folk music but mostly fails on that level. Norwegian Wood is one of the better folk tracks. Nowhere Man is one of the most pretentious songs from this era, so heavy handed that listening to it now shows it stands up to the test of time like a dust pile in a wind storm. The Word is not too bad a song. Something about it keeps it going, but I like The 13th Floor Elevator's cover version better. I'm looking through you, In My Life, and Wait are all pop songs trying to be folk rock. These three songs are more suited for Tom Jones or Petula Clark than a rock n roll band, good songs but not good rock n roll.

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  32. GET BACK - It's another song by The Beatles that holds up like a card castle in a wind storm. It sucks!

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  33. Three Beatles songs that really really suck - I'LL BE BACK, a hopelessly horrible love song. HONEY DON'T, what a lame version of a classic Carl Perkins song, ruined by Ringo's stupid vocals- why did they ever have to let him sing? John originally did the vocals for this and he did the song justice on a few BBC recordings, but this Ringo version is bottom of the barrel album filler. HELLO GOODBYE, I don't know how anyone can like this song, how they can enjoy listening to it or for that matter even stand listening to it; it's a crappy piece of shit.

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  34. ALL I'VE GOT TO DO, LITTLE CHILD, YES IT IS, IT'S ONLY LOVE, DON'T PASS ME BY, LADY MADONNA, THE INNER LIGHT, FOOL ON THE HILL, if you can stand to listening to any of those more than once in a ten year setting, then you must be suffering from mental illness. If you can listen to all of those one after another, you are brain dead.

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  35. WE CAN WORK IT OUT - I would like to know how many times you, The Beatles fan, have listened to the song WE CAN WORK IT OUT. I thing Beatles fans pretend they like it. It's crappy pop of the worst kind.

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  36. THE BEETLES (Beatles) white album. They did this as a double album because they wanted credit from their label, EMI, for two records, in order to more quickly get out of their contract, so if it sounds like a lot of bad filler, that's because it is. Not to waste time going over all the bad songs, sometimes painfully bad, I'll just make a list of the songs that still hold up and are still listenable good songs. BACK IN THE USSR, DEAR PRUDENCE, WHILE MY GUITAR GENTLY WEEPS, YER BLUES, EVERYBODY'S GOT SOMETHING TO HIDE EXCEPT FOR ME AND MY MONKEY, CRY BABY CRY, HELTER SKELTER. The album is probably their best rock n roll album, much harder edged than anything since their club days or BBC shows, though not as good as that. Basically here The Beatles finally catch up to garage rocks harder edge, at least on a few songs anyway. The only softer track that doesn't seem dated and depressing is CRY BABY CRY. If they had used those seven songs and used some of the filler to make it a full album, it could have been a better album, and in fact a very good one. As it is, you have to skip around to listen to what's good, and it's impossible to listen to it all the way through without lying to yourself and saying, "I like this... I really do... I mean I really do like this."

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  37. Let's examine the album Revolver. It is considered by many to be the first psychedelic album. Well, in the opinion of this writer, the album does contain at least a few psychedelic songs, and some strange and weird songs. At this time in The Beatles' career they had accumulated a lot of political clout at their label, Parlaphone EMI, whereupon they could record about anything they liked. To cut this short and not make this some kind of an in-depth review, I'll get to what I like about it first. Taxman, the first song on the LP, is cut and clear the best song on the album, holds up today like a new song, a great song, and a classic, never get tired of it. Tomorrow Never Knows, the last song on the LP, also still holds up well and is the other really good song on the album, a great track, and besides the failed attempt of one or two other tracks, it is the only psychedelic song on the LP that works. As for the rest of it in between, it either poorly stands the test of time, much of it holding up like a card castle in the wind, or it is poppy worthless crap and never was any good to begin with. Love You Too, one of the George tracks on side one, is hopelessly mediocre. Once the mania is gone that will become painfully clear. Eleanor Rigby, gimmick song that tried too hard, doesn't hold up well. I Was Only Sleeping is a dumb pop song about a guy being tired, tries to disguise itself as a psych song by using some guitar solos recorded backward. Here There And Everywhere, boy, need I say more, a song well suited for Barry Manilow. Yellow Submarine, a dumb kids songs that people suffering from the mania fail to see as album filler. She Said She Said, great riff wrapped around an average song, and once again no lead guitar break in the middle as is with most their tracks. Good Day Sunshine, another one they should have given to a sissy band. For No One, another pop song for Barry Manilo. Dr Robert, great guitar riff that loses it's potential with a bad song and a super sissy sounding middle, and once again no lead guitar break. They seem to fear lead guitar solos, a shaving of the rough edges maybe, maybe, and likely. And Your Bird Can Sing, mediocre song, lead guitar break is tame and Lennon is playing it. At this time, George was playing very few lead guitar solos. I Want To Tell You, mediocre pop song. Got To Get You Into My Life, a mediocre Motown song. There you have it, an album with two good songs.

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  38. MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR - No really an album, but a EP record filled out with singles to become an album. I mention what little is good about it first. I think there is potential for a better song with I AM THE WALRUS, as for the rest, it's all shit, including the singles. If you like those mushy soft psych songs, then Strawberry Fields is for you, but it ain't for me. ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE. Love, love, love...ahhhhh. Give me! The Monks! I HATE YOU!!!!!!!!!!! One plus, No Ringo singing!!!

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  39. The typical 65 year old baby boomer lights up his meth pipe, takes a long hit and flies for about half an hour, sucks his gums for a bit, twitches he left cheek, because he's been awake for about 8 days. Then he turns on his tunes and plays DANIEL by Elton John, CALIFORNIA DREAMIN By the Mamas and Papas RED RUBBER BALL by The Cyrcle, and then TICKET TO RIDE by The Beatles, and then looks over at the guy down the block playing an album of rare garage rock and says to his meth addled friend sitting next to him, "Boy, I'm glad I'm not a square. Turn that Beatles song up."

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  40. Since youtube and hearing all that great 1950s rockabilly rock n roll and all that 60 garage rock and psych, The Beatles are starting to look like to rock n roll what Swisher is to cigars.

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  41. There's a lot more to this boyband angle for the early Beatles than meets the eye. In fact, The Beatles fans, or those suffering from the mania are more than proof positive. One totally ignorant if not stupid comment was "The Beatles were not a boyband because when they came to the states in january 1964, Bobby Vinton and the Four Seasons had hits, and The Beatles She Loves You and I Wanna Hold Your Hand were considered hard rock then."
    WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That one can't be swallowed except by the ignorant. I don't want go through another list of songs, because the mass media are partly responsible for this ignorance. After the 1950s, the limited rock radio of the time buried 99 percent of the harder 50s rock n roll, and most of it didn't resurface until the last 10 years. However, most of these Beatle heads listen to nothing but Beatles music or mainstream, so they still don't know. Their are perhaps and likely around, conservatively, 600 to 700 1950s rock n roll songs that out rock nearly all of the Beatles songs, particularly all of the early 64 -66 ones, and all but a few of the later ones and they at least equal those. And at least 300 garage rock and european freakbeat songs from 64 -68 out rocks them too. She Loves You and I Wanna Hold sound sissy wimpy to the max compared to most 50s rock n roll, and were not talking about doo wop.

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  42. In the 1950s, there were two different types of rock n roll; the most popular was rockabilly, and it ruled the genra until the end of the decade. Doo wop, made up of mostly vocal groups with some upbeat rockers from time to time, was mostly a soft harmonizing sound, and it started to gain in popularity in the last couple years of the 50s and then it took over in popularity for the first couple years of the 1960, and it shared the scene with motown groups and they also played a kind of harmonizing doo wop style of their own, and another popular sound in the early 1960s was surfing rock and instrumental rock bands. All three of those shared the scene from 1960 to 1964 when The Beatles showed up. About 1960, like someone pulled the plug on a bathtub, major label quite recording rockabilly rock n roll except for a few, the main survivors being Chuck Berry, Elvis, and Bo Diddley, and today, because of the vast majority of the rest getting buried for decades, people get the impression that only a few played rock n roll in the 1950s. And some of the delusional Beatlemaniacs go as far as to think The Beatles were hard rock because, actually they'd never heard hard rock before so the Beatles sounded the hardest to them. When things get that bad, you have to actually deprogram people. It takes a long time. Too long. Let them live their delusion. Beside, as long as the music I like is out of the spot light, the less chance the TV commercials will get hold of it, like they did to THE CREATIONS Making Time, turning the songs opening riff into some insurance commercial. Let them use The Beatles music for that shit. I WANNA HOLD YOU HAND hand sanitizer commercial, sounds good.

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  43. When The Beatles had their first hit in America in January 1964 and played on Ed Sulivan show on 2/9/64, going from unknown to household word over night, it was a product of mass hysteria. Rock n roll as it was was alive and well before that, but as soon as The Beatles became that overnight sensation, bands tried to copy that style of a four member band with long hair, all across America, and many of them thought they could out rock the Beatles at their own game and many did, and some were just copycat bands. The hair and the look was very influential. (it's hard to explain to young people today how shocking The Beatles long hair was to the average adult, with most haircut being crewcuts, and no one ever dared let their hair grow over the ears without risk of being called a bum, and if a kid grew his hair as long as a Beatle, the school principle would take the kid to the barber and have the barber give him a marine bootcamp haircut) No one can deny that the Beatles were the most revolutionary force in clothing and hair style in the last 100 years. Even today you still see bands using the little dutch boy hair style, or Beatles haircut as it was called after they got here. They also were helped advance the popularity of album cover art (Today a dead art), their covers being some of the coolest. And I suppose, more so indirectly, they were influential in helping to convince record companies the importance of seeing an album as a complete work and not just an interchangeable collection of songs. See I can give them credit when they're entitled to it.

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  44. That paranoia about the hair lasted throughout the sixties. It kept getting longer, with each new band trying to out grow the other. All mainstream adult males kept the their hair short, and I've heard some of the more fanatical ones down south actually shaved peoples heads with rusty razor blades. Most long hair existed only with the rock bands and the growing group known as hippies. I remember my sixth grade class, that was 1969, and no boys at the school had long hair. Two kids came in from another state and him and his brother had mid 1960s style beatle haircuts. The teacher sent them to the office and the principal took them to a barber and had all their hair shaved off. Their parents bitched but couldn't do anything about it. A few days later a kid brought in a pack of those hardcore porno playing cards and threw half of them on the school roof, and all day long they were blowing down for the first graders to look at. The principle saw the cards and set off the fire alarm and the fire department and the school spent the rest of the day looking for the cards. Later that day when things quieted down the school sent a girl home from school, and when I asked why and then I was whispered to in a low voice, "She was wearing short pants and not a skirt." I just wanted to show a little context of the times when The Beatles were a band, so their is a cultural impact that's hard for today generation to comprehend. a year later when I got to Junior high there was a controversy across the school, one guy, a guy with long hair, was wearing an earring in his left ear. Today that kid would go unnoticed, back then he looked like he was from Mars. I think had the only tattoo in the school too.

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  45. This one is not a criticism, but a question. Why didn't The Beatles, knowing that the American recording studios were technologically 6 to 8 years ahead of those in England, travel to America to record? Many other bands did. The Rolling Stones traveled to Chicago and then LA to record. They knew the American recording facilities were more advanced and pushed to go there (Satisfaction I think was recorded in LA). Even the Beatles first drummer, Pete Best, traveled to New York City to record his Pete Best Four album, a pretty good album that an unscrupulous record label re-titled, unbeknownst to Best, Best of the Beatles, but I shouldn't digress. Mccartney was asked in a 1966 interview why The Beatles didn't record their music in America and he kind of ducked the question, saying something about not being able to figure where they could go. I'm guessing they stayed with Abbey Road's inferior set up because of something to do with the EMI contract they were stuck with.

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  46. To sum up and make this my final comment, The Beatles were not a boy band because the entire concept of what a boy band is today didn't exist in 1964. You have to look at things in the context of the times. They came to America regurgitating our rock n roll of the 1950s but in a watered down form. Most of the public didn't really take notice because the harder version of 1950s rock n roll had been tightly buried by the music moguls by 1960, and this was easy to do in the era of 3 to 5 TV channels, no internet, a restrictive mainstream radio, and a public with a short memory. In comparison to the earlier music, The Beatles were softer and tamer, but The Beatles weren't exactly trying to emulate the 50s wild rockabilly rock n roll. Most of their songs, Hard Days Night, I Wanna Hold Your Hand, etc, were their attempt to do Motown. And a lot of the Motown groups did covers of those songs, The Supreme did a whole album of them. Of course, then they followed the latest trends with Folk, and then Pysch. But, at least initially, what was revolutionary about the band had nothing to do with music. It was the look. The long hair, the boots, kids loved it, most adults it scared the hell out them. A lot of people saw the long hair as freedom, and like was said in the movie Easy Rider, real freedom scares the shit out of people. Now did they influence todays boy bands. I think they did, particularly the soft and melodic bubblegum stuff they did, it fits right with boy band stuff in its boy meets girl style. But music of other soft bubblegum music was just as influential. The hair though influenced everybody.

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