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The holiday shopping season is among us, which means that a deluge of deluxe super mega editions aimed at pleasing the classic rock fans in your family will be coming out. For Beatles fans, we’ve got a new album from Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr’s Photograph book. But if you need a set of new music from the Fab Four while they were still together, there’s On Air, a second volume of Live at the BBC recordings.
Back in September, Apple Records announced the set, which is the first Beatles release since Universal Music Group bought EMI last year. The two-disc set will feature 63 tracks, including performances and funny speech clips that were recorded during the BBC broadcasts.
One of the best aspects of the original Live at the BBC set, which came out in 1994, was that you got to hear the Beatles performing their own versions of rock classics that they didn’t formally record for their albums. This carries over to the new set and one of the highlights has to be their version of Chuck Berry’s “I’m Talking About You.” “Glad All Over,” “Sure To Fall (In Love With You)” and “Memphis, Tennessee” are some of the other songs on the set.
Since these tracks were recorded during the group’s early days, many of the songs from Please Please Me through Beatles For Sale pop up. It’s nice to hear tracks like “I Saw Her Standing There” and “I Want To Hold Your Hand” performed with raw intensity, without overdubs. These versions also give you a peek at how the group sounded live without the annoying screaming fans.
On Air - Live at the BBC Volume 2 hits stores on Nov. 12. Apple is also releasing a remastered edition of the first set.