Nobody needs me to tell them that The Beatles were terrific. However, the more you get into them, the more realize that their big radio hits were just the icing on the cake. And, here we have some of the meat of the cake as it were the Beatles' self-titled 1968 album more commonly known as the White Album.
The Beatles version of "Helter Skelter" is just mind-blowing in its precision and McCartney's ability to hit just the right tone with an extremely difficult vocal. Add in some terrific guitar work by George Harrison, the right deliberate pacing by Ringo, and Lennon chipping in some nice guitar work as well, and this is quite possibly the most towering Beatles song of them all.
When you realize that this was the same time that Paul was working up "Martha My Dear," you realize this is no ordinary talent at all. This is the birth of heavy metal to boot. That's right - "Helter Skelter" by the Beatles led directly to groups like Iron Maiden, Metallica, Kiss, and the career of Ozzy Osborne which took off with Black Sabbath. Black Sabbath, incidentally, formed in 1968, the same year that the Beatles released "Helter Skelter," but they did not head in the heavy metal direction until 1969.
Unfortunately, Paul no longer really has the voice for "Helter Skelter," and in any event, he rushes through the song in concert. The White Album version is fine, but this take just blows the album version away. Enjoy this leisurely tour through the song that is spot on, in a pristine recording.