THE BEATLES - Artifacts: The Definitive Collection Of Beatles Rarities 1958-1979 (1993)
Collecting some of the most significant bootlegs of the last 25-odd years in chronological order, Artifacts tells the complete Beatles story through 123 outtakes, live concert tracks, demos, overdub sessions, and rehearsals spread out across five discs with complete linear notes and full color photos. Music critic Bruce Eder writes in the All Music Guide, "One strongly suspects that the existence of this five-CD box, in tandem with a handful of other packages of this type, was largely responsible for getting Paul McCartney (and others) to take a serious look at what was in EMI’s vaults, resulting in the release of the Beatles’ Anthology series. "In 1993, however, this was the only game in town: 124 choice outtakes, live concert tracks, demos, overdub sessions, and rehearsals covering the group’s known recordings from 1958 through 1970 - it’s essentially a best-of the Beatles’ unauthorized output, from what were then the best-known sources of every track represented. The motto of Big Music, whoever they were, was 'Ain’t No Limits,' and they proved it on most of this set, which generally showed excellent selections and superb tape research, a true rarity for bootleg releases, especially on this scale - up to this time, the usual assumption by almost any producer had been that, with a box like this, people would accept quantity in lieu of quality, but on Artifacts there was no compromise of that type."
The first disc in the comprehensive Artifacts I series, The Early Years showcases several tracks recorded by the band before they even had a recording contract, as well as some gems from their Hamburg days. The disc covers the years 1958-63.
The second volume from the Artifacts I set, Beatlemania focuses on live performances and alternate takes (as well as some unreleased tracks) from the years 1964-65, when the band was at the height of their popularity. Includes several live BBC performances and songs from the bands appearances on the Ed Sullivan Show.
Featuring songs from the Beatles highly experimental stage of their career, The Psychedelic Years features tracks laid down from the Sgt. Pepper and Magical Mystery Tour sessions, including some demos that later surfaced on the White Album.
The fourth disc in the comprehensive Artifacts I series, Inner Revolution features tracks taken from various 1968 demos and recordings, as well as a few songs recorded in India while on study with the Maharishi.
This, volume 5 of the Artifacts I series, provides studio rehearsals and alternate takes from sessions for the Beatles final two studio albums. Includes several unreleased tracks and songs recorded during the band's famous rooftop concert.
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