Metascore
100

Universal acclaim - based on 9 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 9
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 9
  3. Negative: 0 out of 9
Buy On
  1. Nov 15, 2018
    100
    At least half of the 30 songs in The Beatles stand among the best of their career. Now, with this carefully detailed and appreciative restoration of how they were developed (from the beginning to end), this boxed set is yet more proof that genius doesn't take time so much as concerted, focused effort, and there is no way to trace the roots of perfect sonic chemistry. You just know it when you hear it.
  2. Nov 9, 2018
    100
    It’s a fuller, more contemporary-sounding mix that is fascinating on first listen, but unlikely to replace the original mixes in fans’ affections. ... Still, the extras are why we’re really here and that’s where this reissue really delivers. By becoming a fly on the wall at their sessions we have the chance to feel closer to The Beatles; to better figure out how they did it and become privy to their casual chats. Close your eyes, suspend your disbelief and you’re there as they make history.
  3. Nov 9, 2018
    100
    As good as Martin's remix is--it may not be as revelatory as his stereo remix of Sgt. Pepper in 2017, but it does manage the trick of sounding rich and bold without betraying the feel of the original--the real appeal of this deluxe reissue is the unreleased material, all presented in sparkling fidelity. This high fidelity is especially welcome on the Esher demos. ... Taken on their own, the session tapes are absorbing listening, but they also have the side effect of making the finished The Beatles not seem like a mess, but rather a deft, cleverly constructed album that accurately reflects the abundant creativity of these sessions.
  4. Nov 9, 2018
    100
    You have to buy the White Album again. ... [Giles Martins' remix is] a secondary attraction. You come to hear multiple alternate versions of material that could be and was played live by a rock band ... or sounded just as complete in hootenanny form in the all-acoustic demos. ... Tracing the small lyrical changes is a delight.
  5. Mojo
    Nov 8, 2018
    100
    Martin's remix feels like the closest anyone can get to sharing the headspace of the people who made the music. The detail is staggering. [Dec 2018, p.98]
  6. Q Magazine
    Nov 8, 2018
    100
    The studio out-takes are where the real action is: a strummy Julia sounds like it could have been on Rubber Soul, the Take 17 version of Helter Skelter is thrillingly raw and there's a spectral early take of While My Guitar... he Beatles were clearly having a ball here. [Dec 2018, p.117]
  7. Nov 8, 2018
    100
    There are 50 tracks of the work in progress--outtakes and sketches; roads not taken and songs left behind--across the summer and fall of 1968. But the Esher tapes are a profound record in themselves. There are rough lyrics and missing parts; Lennon’s “Glass Onion” is just one, repeated verse. But this is an unprecedented view of the Beatles at the ground zero of songwriting as well as the trials and conflict that charged that bounty.
  8. 90
    Instead of losing intrinsic magic, Martin's enhanced it. ... Everything sounds more emphatic, more...everything. ... Bin your bootlegs, [the Esher demos are] exceptional. But the gold for completists comes on discs 4-6: the sessions. [Nov 2018, p.90]
  9. Uncut
    Nov 8, 2018
    90
    Martin's new stereo mix succeeds, principally through lightness of touch. ... Over 107 tracks, we learn that the making of The White Album was not quite the frigid stand-off that we might have been led to believe. But nor does this glimpse behind the curtain diminish The White Album's mystique. [Dec 2018, p.34]
User Score
7.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 36 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 36
  2. Negative: 8 out of 36
  1. Nov 15, 2018
    10
    A legendary album. An album where not only the splendor of the Beatles is more intense, but of all the genres with which they work, toA legendary album. An album where not only the splendor of the Beatles is more intense, but of all the genres with which they work, to reinvent them or give them another dimension, or even to create. Subjects as illuminating as they are obscure, which make this album still current and important, as it was in that year of 68, where all things seem to be summarized and performed in this album, and this art, with a terrifying and dazzling depth. A masterpiece. Full Review »
  2. Nov 14, 2018
    9
    Overall this is one of the best albums of the 20th century and my personal favourite of The Beatles. The combination of soul, vocals andOverall this is one of the best albums of the 20th century and my personal favourite of The Beatles. The combination of soul, vocals and lyrics are almost perfect. Listen to: Happiness is a Warm Gun, I Will, Blackbird, Back in the USSR. Full Review »