12" vinyl re-mastered at abbey road, housed in a triple panel card package with historical notes and a mini documentary on the album. directed by bob smeaton, the documentary is included as quicktime files on each album. it contains archival footage, rare photographs and never-before-heard studio chat from the beatles, offering a unique and very personal insight into the studio atmosphere. though some might argue that the beatles' unprecedented evolution from british invasion pin-ups to pop music visionaries began with 'beatles for sale', 'rubber soul' is without a doubt the first album to definitively put the fab four in the running for greatest band ever. virtually every aspect of the liverpool quartet's incredibly diverse sound is in evidence here: the dark, irony-filled dylanism ('norwegian wood,' 'nowhere man'), pop perfection ('in my life'), the passion for classic tin pan alley balladry ('girl,' 'michelle'), and the love of good 'ol rock and roll music ('drive my car').
Peppered with nasty fuzz bass, exotic sitar, cartoonishly sped-up piano that sounds like harpsichord, and elements of country, motown, and classical music, the album reveals a creative scope and willingness to experiment so revolutionary it can now only be termed beatlesque. though the fabs don't go as far out on a limb here as on the more overtly experimental 'revolver', 'rubber soul' is perhaps the beatles' most finely crafted and accessible work, and consequently many fans' and critics' favourite.