This is a charming set of Beatles photographs taken in a single day about 6 months before what was to be their dissolution. What we seem to see is a band of brothers, happy to be together. Something else is that these are not the Beatles who were photographed to look as much like each other as possible. Instead, what we see are four separate individuals – a prideful and content Paul, a wacky John, a contemplative George and a Ringo who looks like he’s tougher than the rest. (Paul’s dog Martha makes a guest appearance.)
It’s a bittersweet collection as it represents the last time the band members would not look either exhausted or angry. These were the boys enjoying the calm before the storm. They also seemed to occasionally be making fun of their earlier image; some of the poses present a wacky Monkees aura.
At $24.95, it’s a Rizzoli that will be a bit rich for some budgets and it’s not essential when compared to the large, comprehensive Chronology book. But the picture of Paul, on pages 122-123, appearing to sleep with a smile on his face while his mates laugh is worth the money.
Reviewed by Joseph Arellano