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Four fab songs from
former Fab Four

Paul McCartney - Amoeba's Secret (12" Vinyl Only)
(Hear Music)
4 stars (out of 5 stars)
Reviewed: Aug. 11, 2008
Paul McCartney

Review by Tony Bonyata

On June 26th, 2007 former Beatle Paul McCartney joined Ringo Starr along with the widows of John Lennon (Yoko Ono) and George Harrison (Olivia Harrison) at the Mirage in Las Vegas to dedicate the one year anniversary of the Cirque du Soleil's Beatles production "Love" in honor of the two deceased Beatles. With a star-studded media conference, nationally televised interview with Larry King and The Fabs attending the anniversary show later that evening (with both Paul and Ringo taking a grand curtain-call onstage after the show's performance), there was no doubt that, for this celebratory evening at least, Paul and Ringo were still every bit as much Beatles as when they first touched down at New York's JFK Airport back in February of '64.

It wasn't even twenty-four hours later, however, that McCartney would eschew his Mop Top persona in favor of promoting his own latest solo studio album, Memory Almost Full - which, by early 2008, would ship over a million copies. This particular promotional event was held at the venerable independent music retailer Amoeba Records in Los Angeles where Sir Paul (remember he was knighted in '97 for his 'services to music') performed a 'secret' in-store performance for 700 lucky audience members.

While he and his band were there to promote Paul's latest solo effort, it was also a show that weighed heavily on Wings solo material and, thankfully for the many faithful in attendance, many Beatles numbers including "Hey Jude," "Drive My Car," :Back in the U.S.S.R.," "Let It Be" and others.

To commemorate this rare, intimate performance (one that even Paul mentioned to the crowd that night as being,"the most surreal gig ever") McCartney's latest record label Hear Music (own by the Starbucks coffee chain) produced a very limited four-song-EP from this show entitled Amoeba's Secret. The interesting aspect of this release is that it's not only being touted as an authorized live bootleg recording but that it's available only as a 12" vinyl record, with no further plans to release either digitally or on CD. Even the packaging would lead one to believe that this is an actual bootleg - from the pixilated cover photo of Paul to the small white rectangle labels used as the sole markings on the actual vinyl record.

Perhaps thinking of this as a 'bootleg' (even though the sound quality is fantastic for a live recording) or even that it will definitely become a sought-after rarity in the not-too-distant future, is enough to pique the interest of both Beatles fans and serious record collectors alike. Whatever the case you should definitely take the time to search out this short-but-sweet gem, as it features Paul & Co. not only delivering a punchy and youthful take of The Beatles' 1964 hit "I Saw Her Standing There" but also a version of Wings' quaint 1972 faux-reggae number "C Moon," which originally appeared as the b-side of their "Hi Hi Hi" single. The remaining two tracks on the record are from his latest Memory Almost Full effort, and although he sidesteps the obvious choice of adding his successful mandolin-driven pop hit from the record, "Dance Tonight," he instead includes the hard-rocking swagger of both "That Was Me" and "Only Mama Knows" which just goes to show that at 65 years-old this musical legend not only sounds as good as ever, but can still rock with the best of them.

Related articles:

The Beatles reunite for one-year anniversary of Cirque du Soleil's LOVE - June 2007
The Beatles Love Media Launch at Abbey Road Studios - Nov. 2006
Concert review - Milwaukee, WI - Sept. 2002
Memory Almost Full Album review
Flaming Pie Album review
Run Devil Run Album review

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