The Beatles put “Let It Be … Naked” on iTunes Tuesday, following in the steps of recent Beatles albums “Love” and “Tomorrow Never Knows” to go digital.
The new version has a few new twists that the CD version doesn’t, like an interactive main menu and CD booklet. As you play the songs, an animated slideshow features pictures from the CD booklet switching back and forth from positive to negative to keep with the visual theme of the album. (You can see some of them in the slideshow.)
“Let It Be … Naked” has been remixed for iTunes, EMI says, and there does seem to be a slightly less punchy tone to the digital version, but the difference is slight. Music-wise, there’s no difference between the CD and the iTunes version.
Where there is a difference is the bonus “Fly on the Wall” disc, which was physically in the CD package, but is not included in the downloaded tracks on your PC or your iPod. However, they are accessible from the interactive main menu, but they can’t be burned to CD.
The Beatles have added music videos for the “Naked” versions of “Get Back” and “Don’t Let Me Down” on iTunes that can be purchased and downloaded or freely streamed. Please, let’s get the videos out on DVD and blu-ray and stop with this bits-and-pieces thing.
Better news is to promote the album, the Beatles are launching a series of five podcasts featuring tracks from the album, original archive sound from the making of “Let It Be,” and interviews with Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr about that period in The Beatles’ career.
The podcasts will be featured on the “Let It Be… Naked” site, or on Facebook and Twitter. A complete version, hopefully free, will be offered soon in the iTunes podcast store. The first podcast discusses the making of the “Let It Be” album and why “Let It Be … Naked” in the first place.
The initial release of “Let It Be …. Naked” had us frowning about its worth. Our feelings have changed in the years since its original release and if you don’t have it, you should definitely get it, either on iTunes or as a CD. It’s a great complement to the original “Let It Be.”
But I prefer the original CD, if only for the fact that you get the physical “Off the Wall” disc. Musically, there’s little there, for sure. But having it only available off the cloud of the disc menu doesn’t feel right.
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