Guardian - In praise of... Sgt Pepper
The transformation of cheeky mop-tops into artists was also marked by the lyrics being printed on the sleeve, so that they might be read as poetry. George Martin's production exploited classical instruments and eight-track technology alike, making for a sound the world had never heard before. And there is still no icon in pop history to match Peter Blake's inspired cover, which shows the band with stars, writers and their younger selves. Even where it falters, the album innovates. Within You Without You may be a dirge, but it exposed the west to the sitar and provided the prototype for many a hippy sermon. Like no other record, Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band ushered in a new age- one with long hair, dope and time for a number of things that weren't important yesterday.I got back from the record shop and played the album non-stop all day long. It was wonderful. What a great summer that was. 40 years on and two of them are dead and we are all getting scarily close to that dreaded sixty four. Shit!