Monday, February 21, 2011

Anytime At All

Robert Bunter: On the surface, this sounds like the kind of lightweight, by-the-numbers moptop pop that John would dismiss so blithely in years to come. Granted, there's no sitar break, mellotron loops, primal screaming or string section. Still, this song plays to all the strengths of the early Beatles. Out-of-the-ordinary chord progressions, pounding Mersey beat, throat ripping vocals, an unorthodox piano/12-string solo near the end, and lyrics addressed directly to the listener.

Richard Furnstein: Lennon's back at the work site. Sure, there's a sense that this song was more obligation than inspiration, but there are still some neat parts to geek out over. The verse is particularly pretty; Lennon overlays the verse lines as close as he can without having to overdub the end of the previous bar. This prefaces a somewhat similar crammed approach on "All You Need Is Love." Single piano bass notes fill out the verses, providing a nice contrast to George's Rickenbacker twinkles. Ringo keeps the jumbled nature of this song on track, and it all starts with his commanding snare hit at the top of the song.

Robert Bunter: John was turning his heart into a mass-produced product, available for purchase by teenage girls across the globe. In the process, he became emotionally unavailable to his wife and son. After giving himself so completely to the world, there was nothing left for the people around him. The needle on the John tank was on "E." Julian asks Cynthia, "Where's daddy?" And the answer was, "Nowhere, man."

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