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From 1974’s Walls and Bridges, his last album of original material before going into seclusion in 1975, presented here both in the acoustic demo and album versions. It was in this period that John had cemented his credentials as the “serious Beatle”, while Paul was off cranking out silly love songs and racking up massive sales as if on a mission to prove that light and tuneful was always going to be more popular than heavy and dour. In retrospect the pair’s output in this era tended to demonstrate the extent to which each had always benefitted from the other’s constraining influence, with McCartney apparently feeling free to be just as twee as twee could be, while John wallowed in rage, bitterness, and pained introspection veering often towards self-pity, both of them seeming to revel in playing into the misleading stereotypes they were each doing everything they could to promote in the popular consciousness. Yet both were still proving capable of excellent work, and I remember liking Walls and Bridges a great deal when I was in my twenties, particularly the attached, the album’s statement piece, which was bitter and morose, sure, but tuneful, rather compellingly bluesy, and full of delightfully sardonic Lennonisms, while ending with what would too soon sound like the eerily prophetic sentiment that “everybody loves you when you’re six foot in the ground”.

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