In Los Angeles 1966, The Byrds recorded their ground breaking raga inspired single 'Eight Miles High', while in London, The Beatles recorded the single 'Paperback Writer'/'Rain' as part of the 'Revolver' LP sessions.
Both records became ‘sonic signposts’ for the emerging psychedelic era, which exploded in 1967 and changed the sound of pop forever, heralding the new album oriented rock era.
What is intriguing about both records is that The Byrds had already recorded a version of Eight Miles High they were happy with, producing themselves, but it was turned down by their record label because it wasn’t recorded at their record label Columbia studios! So they had to do it all over again. Meanwhile, The Beatles were inspired by the superior sounds coming out of American studios and had planned to record the songs that became Revolver at Motown or Stax, using session players. But as news leaked out, their safety couldn’t be guaranteed, so they opted to return to Abbey Road. New engineer Geoff Emerick gave them a dramatic change of sound, the distortion and experimenting of Revolver contrasted with the previous pop/folk sound of Rubber Soul.
But, how did The Byrds get that sound? And supposing the Beatles had recorded in America? What would they have sounded like?
The idea of how not only recording studios, but also different countries working practices impacts on a records sound was first experienced during the mixing of Get Smart! Half the album was mixed in Los Angeles and half in London, and you can hear the subtle differences in how the American mixes have a certain polish, whereas the British mixes have a pop sensibility. For instance Side 1 is UK, US, UK, US, US, UK. Side 2 is US, UK, UK, UK, US, US.
Following that idea, it was decided to record in America, and understand how to create a mid 1960s American sound.
Squire display their skills and understanding of the era by exactly reproducing The Byrds classic, following the same analogue methodology, and re-imagine The Beatles 'Rain' as if recorded in Los Angeles in 1966, which contributes a sunshine pop sound. The result is a masterful interpretation, and invokes an authentic aura of the summer of love.
Squire later returned to the studio in London and flipped the coin, recreating The Beatles Rain as recorded at Abbey Road, and re-imaging The Byrds as if they had recorded at the same studio as The Yardbirds! Those recordings will be released in the New Year.
Meanwhile, We have added the released American recordings of Eight Miles High and Rain everywhere! So you can now stream it, add it to your playlists and of course follow us on Spotify etc. if you don't do so already, so you can listen to everything - and also be automatically informed of new releases as they appear!
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