The Beatles “Live At The Star Club” (Yellow Dog YD 2008)
Road Runner / Hippy Hippy Shake / A Taste Of Honey / Money / Reminiscing / Ask Me Why / I Saw her Standing There / Sparkling Brown Eyes / Lovesick Blues / First Taste Of Love / Dizzy Miss Lizzy / Do You Believe / Ooh Poo Pah Doo / Twist And Shout / Cannonball / I Saw Her Standing There / Kansas City / Shimmy Shimmy / Falling In Love Again / Roll Over Beethoven / Your Feets Too Big (fragment) (51:06)
Tracks 1 – 15 taken from a raw tape source, unedited / Tracks 16 – 21 taken from a 1970’s sampler tape – Recorded at the Star Club, Hamburg, Germany, 1962.
The Star Club sessions have been around the block more times than a stray dog. Originally starting life as very bad bootlegs, the minds behind these releases realised that it wasn’t actually owned by the Beatles, their estates or organisations, a short free for all was had and the material was picked up to be included on various LPs of another branch of dubious legality. After a legal embargo by the Beatles / Apple stopped all the grey area copies of these sets being bandied around, it was another dog that picked up the first tape version of their German shenanigans – a piece that has a short but concise potted history of those releases can be found here – here – while an excellent thread is running on the Steve Hoffman forum here – here with regards to the other semi-legal releases and discussion on the best compilation to surface so far.
In 2008 Fuego entertainment suggested that had turned up newer and better, unreleased Beatles recordings from the Star Club. Obviously this became the source of another (il)legal Beatles battle despite the company suggesting they would release these recordings piecemeal by way of a subscription service but this never seemed to come to fruition and the matter of these new recordings was dropped.
More on the practice of trying to release these rare tapes and their contents can be found on this page – <ahref=http://abbeyrd.best.vwh.net/news/111newearlybeatletracks.html>here</a>
Now another Yellow Dog, one from Japan, has put forwards their own version of these Fuego tapes sources from an apparent unedited, raw source tape along with tracks from a 1970’s sampler tape ( Presumably the Alan Williams tape that the Beatles ex-Manager has been flaunting around. )
A single CD so unfortunately it’s far from complete but one would hope that we’re to be treated to a best ever quality collection. It transpires that the sound is very good – the vocals are a little muffled, the instrumentation seems to have been recorded in a different room and then theres a slight hiss to the sides and a little distortion to the first track.
The second part of the disk is louder but a little more muffled as well and, as you might suspect, show a little distortion. Track 19 – ‘Falling In Love Again’ – features the sound of what sounds like an email being delivered at 23 seconds in.
If you read through the third link you’ll see that there’s nothing that’s substantially new, especially as the shows have been well catered for in Internet downloads – not everyones choice of medium maybe but until someone releases them to silver disk then this release is a passible collectable, if an affront to the solid Yellow Dog name.If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)