Friday, May 25, 2012
The remastered edition of Paul's second post-Beatles album, Ram, came out on Tuesday. Both The A.V. Club and Pitchfork greeted it with lavish, in-depth praise. From The A.V. Club: The result is a record distinguished by loopy humor, funky looseness, the homey chemistry between the two principals, and most of all, melodies stacked upon melodies in likeably eccentric packages. Ram discourages the sort of self-serious examination that greeted The Beatles at every turn. But just because it doesn’t announce its inventiveness à la Sgt. Pepper doesn’t keep Ram from benefitting from McCartney’s compositional restlessness or indestructible pop sense. It’s a “hang-out” record that—like McCartney’s demo-like self-titled 1970 debut—deliberately recalibrated how McCartney’s music was supposed to sound and how it should be perceived. And from Pitchfork: Ram, simply put, is the first Paul McCartney release completely devoid of John's musical influence. Of course, John wiggled his way into some of the album's lyrics-- in those fresh, post-breakup years, the two couldn't quite keep each other out of their music. But musically, Ram proposes an alternate universe where young Paul skipped church the morning of July 6, 1957, and the two never crossed paths. It's breezy, abstracted, completely hallucinogen-free, and utterly lacking grandiose ambitions. Its an album whistled to itself. It's purely Paul.