Beatles best album and concert dvd?

I'm getting older and finally decided to let The Beatles play all day in the background while I work from home.  I've never been a big fan and thought they were overrated (calm down)...  But I'm starting to really enjoy them.  I've listened to the White album a few times and finding a new appreciation for them.  

1. Is the White album generally considered their "best"?  

2. Are there any decent concert dvds where they play live?  
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Showing 5 responses by cd318

It's difficult to say what is the best Beatles album because they're all different. From 63 to 69 the band went through amazing changes (and hairstyles). Each album reflected this with increasing sophistication and studio time.

It's a very long and winding road from Please Please Me to Abbey Road and it's hard to believe it's the same band only 6 years later.

In general terms you could say there's the Beatles before and after hallucinogens - basically the years of Beatlemania 63-66 up to and including Rubber Soul.

This is still the favourite period (and the lasting image) for many people when their lyrics were straightforward and generally upbeat. The 1964 A Hard Days Night album might be the peaking of this Beatlemania phase.

From Revolver onwards their music become increasingly more experimental and introspective and this probably peaks with the trippy Sergeant Pepper (Lucy in the Sky, Benefit of Mr Kite, Within Without You, Day in the Life) and the White album (Revolution 9, Happiness is a Warm Gun, Long, Long, Long etc).

My personal favourite is Abbey Road because it's the one I'm most likely to play without skipping from start to finish.

Side 2 (on vinyl) for me is a good a side of music as there has ever been, and side 1 is not too bad either.

As for the concert/ touring years (62-66), I think Ron Howard's Eight Days a Week DVD is great place to start. 

"I think both the red and blue “greatest hits” additions are must haves for a great overall Beatles mix."

The Blue album was where it began for me. It’s a great compilation and apparently the tracks were chosen by the band themselves.

The 1970s UK pressing of the Blue album (67-70) on vinyl is just awesome. Everything vinyl should be.

I don’t think its vivid exhuberance has ever been matched on CD though the 1993 remaster is acceptable.
@rgs92 ,

'If you ever get into the vast library of Beatles rarities, alternative takes, and all sorts of Beatles archives out there on CD, you may go nuts.'

Err yes...

It is frustrating that even in 2020 we have NO definitive digital versions of their albums. Since the initial 2007 George Martin supervised CDs every subsequent digital release has been hampered in one way or another. Many still prefer the 2007 set (give or take the dodgy stereo of the first 4 albums).

This is an appalling state of affairs for a body of work that has so much historical and cultural value.

On the other hand there's tons of stuff about their vinyl releases esp on the Stevehoffman music forum and the excellent Parlogram Auctions YouTube channel.

Sorry, my mistake. I was referring to the 1987 original George Martin supervised releases. Or at least I thought I was.

The only other digital set I like is the US Box of 2014 which I believe is a slightly tweaked version of the lacklustre 2009 UK remasters. I forget who tweaked it, but they did a good job. 

Unfortunately that one only goes up to Revolver after which both the UK and US releases coincided. IIRC it's possible to reconstruct all of their UK albums up to Sgt Pepper bar one track via that set.

I've not heard either the USB or the Blu-ray releases, but some fans rave about them.


Yes, everything can only be a product of its time and they were lucky with theirs.

WW2 generation being superceded by those who hadn’t known war.

National service abolished in the UK.

Post war economies were booming
Pirate Radio stations playing hip sounds
LPs gaining dominance over 45 single

US wanting a lift after JFK’s murder
Elvis not the force he was
Dylan giving them pot and much more
LSD and meditation
The swinging sixties - esp in London
Colour TV on the horizon