Ranking The Tracks From The Beatles’ ‘Rubber Soul’
Rubber Soul album cover - The Beatles / Youtube
How the Beatles managed to completely transform from a commercial-oriented band into an experimental rock group still has most of us at our wit’s end. Of course, the band was more than capable of doing so in their own right, it’s just that drastic turn in their creative process that shook everybody that followed the band. It’s too late to dispute that now, is it? Well, here are Rubber Soul’s tracks ranked from nay to yay, but you don’t have to agree with us!
One could infer how the band tried to go experimental with the LP in cuts like “Wait”. Instrument upon instrument layer themselves as the song progresses, a valiant effort that just hits short of the mark they set for the album.
13. “The Word”
When Bob Dylan introduced the Beatles to pot, the band made sure to honor the experience on the song, “The Word”. Marijuana’s influence on the band probably became romanticized by hippies back in the day.
12. “What Goes On”
It’s a shame that the band didn’t fully commit to the song “What Goes On”, as it clearly had the potential to be a great track. Stemming from a Quarrymen-era Lennon’s creation, the American influence and skiffle beat just needed a bit more polishing, along with the lyric Ringo Starr contributed.
11. “You Won’t See Me”
The band changing tune from wooing their lovers into being on the verge of a break-up was discussed in “You Won’t See Me”. Surprisingly, it isn’t all gloom and doom musically as McCartney managed to lift some of the decade’s shimmer and plant it upon the song’s progression.
10. “Run For Your Life”
The boys go dark with the song “Run For Your Life”, which probably was quite extreme for some as it led to rumors of Lennon being a serial abuser. Of course, these rumors would remain as is, with no particular evidence leading to it being truth.
9. “I’m Looking Through You”
The album doesn’t entirely abandon the style that The Beatles were most known for. “I’m Looking Through You” is a simple rock and roll tune that was written about Paul McCartney’s relationship with Jane Asher. The song became a classic, but McCartney’s fling went a different route.
Looking back to where you came from is age-old wisdom that many have followed, including the Beatles. By doing so, the classic rocker in “Girl” has the band singing about a dream girl, reminiscent of the prevalent theme of rock and roll during their era. They also managed to squeeze in some naughty lyrics that left George Martin scratching his head and the Beatles laughing about it.
7. “Drive My Car”
The album welcomes the listener into their experimental wonderland in a smooth process thanks to the opener “Drive My Car”. Clearly derived from pop influences, the fun and upbeat track is a glimpse into the recent past of the band and their undertakings.
McCartney was inspired by Nina Simone’s “I Put A Spell On You” when “Michelle” was coming to be. Lennon contributed a blues accent to the song via the bridge when they wrote it.
5.” If I Needed Someone”
This was a George Harrison track down to the bone. Inspired by Indian music and his then-girlfriend Pattie Boyd, many interpret it as his perspective in the rock and roll life. Harrison addressed the song’s musicality instead, explaining his fascination with chords and how innovations in playing them were important in music’s advancement.
4. “Think For Yourself”
While not the most popular Harrison tune in the album, “Think For Yourself” has the Quiet Beatle pondering about spirituality and its relevance to the modern world.
3. “In My Life”
Lennon was challenged when he consciously thought about the lyrics to “In My Life”, apparently a first in his songwriting stint. The song talks about memories of Lennon coming back to him when he least expected them to arrive, entranced in a state of reminiscing.
2. “Nowhere Man”
Redefining the pop music landscape was “Nowhere Man” – a song that contained the collective consciousness of the band and what they knew of the path they were forging for themselves. Lennon claims that he didn’t write the song, but instead, the song wrote itself when the lyrics came to him as if it were an epiphany.
1. “Norwegian Wood (The Bird Has Flown)”
Trippy as it may seem, “Norwegian Wood” wasn’t complete without Harrison lending a hand to Lennon for the song’s sitar parts. It wasn’t until he stopped bugging Harrison and handed him the duty of crafting the progression that the song began to take shape. The song was also quite a gutsy move from Lennon as he tried to blend in his involvement in affairs into it, probably because of guilt.