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Rock'n'Reel (reprint)
February 2010

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Off The Beatle Track 
Comprising five seriously talented musicians from Seattle, Apple Jam are unique among Beatles cover bands. What distances them from the pack is a preference for the more obscure Beatle tunes and the fact that ‘live’ they are augmented by original Plastic Ono Band drummer Alan White on ‘Instant Karma’ and other Lennon solo material. Thus, not surprisingly maybe, Off The Beatle Track isn’t just a retread of songs The Beatles released themselves but instead features tunes John and Paul gifted to acts such as Peter & Gordon, Billy J. Kramer, Cilla Black, Tommy Quickly, The Fourmost and The Strangers with Mike Shannon. Apple Jam have here taken these giveaways and skilfully arranged and recorded them in the style of The Beatles circa With The Beatles/A Hard Day’s Night. Hence ‘A World Without Love’ recalls the semi-acoustic lilt of ‘And I Love Her’, the big band blast of Cilla’s ‘Love Of The Loved’ becomes something altogether more Mersey Beat and a take on the ‘lost’ George Harrison song, ‘You Know What To Do’, cleverly provides Apple Jam with their very own original Beatles ‘cover’. It’s a winning formula that makes for an enjoyable addition to any discerning Beatle fan’s album collection.

Colin Hall