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Old 10-29-2006, 06:54 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Providence, RI
Posts: 29
Default The Byrds - Younger Than Yesterday


Younger Than Yesterday by The Byrds
Originally released February 20, 1967 as Columbia CL 2642 (Mono) and CS 9442(Stereo)


1. So You Want to Be a Rock 'n' Roll Star
2. Have You Seen Her Face
3. C.T.A. - 102
4. Renaissance Fair
5. Time Between
6. Everybody's Been Burned
7. Thoughts and Words
8. Mind Gardens
9. My Back Pages
10. The Girl With No Name
11. Why

Younger Than Yesterday is a masterpiece and a shining gem in the Byrds' discography. After the trying their hand at psychedelia on Fifth Dimension, an album that unbelievable strong points as well as some major mis-steps, the band really returned to form with this record. Younger was both Chris Hillman's and David Crosby's time to shine in terms of songwriting, and the album contains some of the best songs that those guys ever contributed to a Byrds record.

The album's lead single, the phenomenal "So You Want to Be a Rock 'n' Roll Star", is a perfect send-up of the Monkees. "Just get an electric guitar and take some time and learn how to play. And when your hair's grown right and your pants are tight, it's gonna be alright." This song and "C.T.A. - 102", a fun, if not eccentric, song about trying to communicate with aliens, are leader Roger McGuinn's two main contributions to the album.

Chris Hllman delivered in spades on Younger and, moreso than any other Byrds record, proved that he was a better songwriter than anyone was ready to give him credit for. "Have You Seen Her Face", "Thoughts and Words", and "The Girl With No Name" are all Byrds classics, but not on the same level as "Time Between". That song is remarkable by any standards and Hillman still performs it regularly to this day.

David Crosby delivered some noteable classics here as well, namely the hippie anthem "Renaissance Fair" and "Everybody's Been Burned", a poignant song about love gone bad. Crosby's other contribution, "Mind Gardens", is definitely not going to please everyone. It's an utterly bizarre song and possibly this album's only real mis-step.

What Byrds record would be complete without a great Bob Dylan cover? Some perhaps, but not this one. The Byrds cover "My Back Pages" here, and in doing so created the definitive version of the song. Everything that the Byrds were famous for doing to Dylan's songs, they did here. Great harmonies, a great rock beat, nice guitar, etc.

The album's closer, "Why", is a song with great beat and great melody, but probably some of the most misunderstood lyrics in the Byrds' cannon. The song deals with viewing life from two different angles. The way that the adults were viewing the world, and the way the kids and hippies were viewing the world. The girl in the song is representative of the kids rebelling and questioning all the rules and limits placed upon them by their parents' and grandparents' generations.

Overall, while the Byrds would wait one more record to put out their best, this is essential to any Byrds collection, and any music collection really. It's just that great.

5/5
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Drop out of school before your mind rots from exposure to our mediocre educational system. Forget about the Senior Prom and go to the library and educate yourself if you've got any guts. Some of you like Pep rallies and plastic robots who tell you what to read. Forget I mentioned it. This song has no message. Rise for the flag salute.
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