The Smithereens to release second Beatles tribute album


US rock band The Smithereens plan to follow up their 2007 Beatles tribute album, Meet The Smithereens, with a second tribute album, titled B-Sides The Beatles. It will contain cover versions of twelve of the Fab Four’s earliest B-sides.


Formed in New Jersey in 1980, The Smithereens have always been best known for writing and playing catchy 1960s-influenced power pop songs with distinct echoes of The Byrds and The Beatles.


The new album is expected to follow a similar format to Meet The Smithereens which was the band’s own track-by-track homage to Meet The Beatles – the first Beatles album to be released in the United States.


Meet The Smithereens featured the band’s respectful re-recordings of every song from the original Beatles LP, including ‘I Want to Hold Your Hand’, ‘Little Child’, ‘This Boy’, and ‘Not a Second Time’. They mostly stuck to The Beatles’ original arrangements, right down to Paul McCartney’s famous “1-2-3-4!” countdown on I Saw Her Standing There’.


B-Sides The Beatles – which is expected to be released in September 2008 – will contain cover versions of a dozen Beatles tracks originally recorded in 1964 and early 1965.


The full track-listing is: ‘Thank You Girl’, ‘There’s A Place’, ‘I’ll Get You’, ‘You Can’t Do That’, ‘Ask Me Why’, ‘Cry For A Shadow’, ‘P.S. I Love You’, ‘Happy Just To Dance With You’, ‘If I Fell’, ‘Slow Down’, ‘I Don’t Want To Spoil The Party’, and ‘Some Other Guy’.


The B-Sides The Beatles CD will also feature some surprises for die-hard Beatles fans – including an appearance by session musician Andy White who played drums on ‘P.S. I Love You’, the B-side to The Beatles’ first single ‘Love Me Do’ in 1962.


The album will also include in-depth liner notes written by Beatles author and historian Bruce Spizer.


The CD cover was created by legendary illustrator Jack Davis, best known for his work on Mad magazine in the Fifties and Sixties.


“This project started while we were making demos in preparation for the next original Smithereens album,” said Smithereens co-producer Kurt Reil. “As the band warmed up on some obscure Beatles B-sides they used to play in clubs, we soon realised there was some unfinished Beatles business for The Smithereens, especially in light of the success of Meet The Smithereens … and the idea for a follow-up was born.”


Who knows, maybe they’ll have a crack at Revolver next …


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