Beatles – Casualties (Dr. Ebbett DBM-046)

Casualties (Dr. Ebbett DBM-046)

(48:23):  Please Please Me (mono) / I Want To Hold Your Hand (true stereo) / Money (British mono mix) /A Hard Day’s Night (true stereo) / I’ll Cry Instead (fake long version) / Ticket To Ride (true stereo) / Yes It Is (mono )/ Day Tripper (British stereo version) / I’m Only Sleeping (mono version from a French EP) / Strawberry Fields Forever (true stereo) / I Am The Walrus (basic track before overdubbing) / Only A Northern Song (mono) / Revolution (single)/ Her Majesty (faked last note) / Let It Be (Japanese “mono” mix) / Love Me Do  (stereo) / From Me To You (stereo)

Casualties collects together impossible to find in the US rare singles and was first released on vinyl in October, 1980 by the same guy who produced The Beatles Collectors Items.  The first pressing was on picture disc with the full, uncropped “butcher cover,” detailed liner notes, and a fictitious Capital Records catalogue number (SEAX 11950).  Following the LP’s initial release as a picture disc, it was reissued in February 1981 as a conventional album (Capitol SPRO 9469), with the graphics from both sides of the record becoming the front and back covers. In 1982, Casualties was again re-released, this time in a numbered, limited edition of fifty copies, pressed on blue vinyl.

The first track is the mono “Please Please Me” released in the UK as a single Parlophone R4983 single 1963, Parlophone PMC 1202 Please Please Me 1963, the US on Vee Jay VJ 498 single 1963 and Vee Jay VJLP 1062 introducing second issue 1963.  The original Capitol release has the mistake where Lennon sings “I know I never every try, girl” in the last verse.  This mono release has the “correct” lyric.  “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” follows in stereo, which had never been released in the US.  “Money (That’s What I Want)” is the original “true mono” version of the track.

The true stereo “A Hard Day’s Night” is a few seconds longer than the mono and had never been issued in the US.  “I’ll Cry Instead” is one of the “outfakes” in this compilation.  All of the original versions 2:03 in duration have appeared as  a single and on the A Hard Day’s Night soundtrack LP.  The shorter version lasts 1:44 since it omits the first verse.  The longer version is in mono with the additional verse in stereo and the entire track on Casualties edits the two versions together to form a definitve version.  “Ticket To Ride” is in true stereo and “Yes It Is” is the rare mono version.  “Day Tripper” is an alternate stereo mix issued only in England and Japan.  

“I’m Only Sleeping” is an alternate mono mix of the song available previously only on the EP issued in France. The backwards guitar sounds on this version appear in different portions of the song.  “Strawberry Fields Forever” is an alternate stereo mixed issued in various foreign countries.  Following is a true gem, the backing tracks for “I Am The Walrus.”  This is the same performance except without the orchestral and sound effects overdubs, featuring only the band playing the track.  This is an arrangement they could have played live if they chose to do so. 

“Only A Northern Song” was available in “processed” stereo before but this is the true mono version of the song as is “Revolution,” issued as a single on Capital Records.   “Her Majesty” is another outfake with the final note taken from a bootleg recording.  The final note does not appear on the existing master tape for Abbey Road so this is a complete fabrication.

The versions of “Let It Be” that appear on the LP and were released as a single are considerably different.  Most countries issued both versions only in stereo. However, Japan released the single version in mono. The Japanese single is in mono although there is no actual mono mix.  The two channels were combined into one for the purposes of issuing the single because their singles were still mono back then. 

The original vinyl ended with “Let It Be,” but Dr. Ebbett tacked two additional tracks onto their release.  Both of these are very good outtakes.  “Love Me Do” is presented in stereo while “From Me To You” is in stereo with the vocals and bass centered while the rest of the instruments maintain their place in the stereo image.  It is an extraordinary piece of work and a worthy addition to this release.  The transfer from the vinyl on both the original Dr. Ebbett CDR issued in 2003 and on this silver permutation is excellent making it a great way to obtain these rarities. 

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