In a World of Pure Imagination … “McCartney III Imagined”

Okay, sometimes being an old fart is a good thing but sometimes being an old fart can just get in your way.

Take for example this new CD that just arrived in my mailbox called “McCartney III Imagined”.

This groovy new CD takes Paul McCartney’s latest album that was released a few months ago and casts it in a new light featuring the entire album redone with new remixes and new takes of the songs by some of today’s modern musicians. I won’t pretend to know most of them besides Beck (the old fartitis I was talking about) but I was curious to hear what they had done to McCartney’s album.

Actually the music on this CD has been available online for weeks but when it was first announced I was, shall I say, less than enthused about the idea and decided to not listen to these new remixes/versions online and waited for the old fart physical disc to be released.

Well that disc was released today and voilà here we are and here that discs sits in my old-fashioned CD player.

I sat and looked at the new cover and read over the contents and thought “well, here we go, let’s give it a try.”

And here’s where the old fart gets in the way. I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised to find that I sort of liked some of these remixes. Actually most of them were pretty darn good! I pretty much enjoyed the entire CD and that  did surprise me. I’m happy to say that this new CD is a lot of fun and not what I was expecting.

My initial worry was that this album would sound like one of those tribute albums that barely resembled a Paul McCartney album. I thought I’d have to really dig deep to hear any trace of McCartney in these new versions of the songs from “McCartney III” but I was totally and happily mistaken.

Not is McCartney all over these new remixes but much of the album reminds me of the experimental remixes McCartney himself put together in the 1980s especially for the material on his 12-inch singles (remember those?) and his 45 b-sides (remember them?).

Here’s a run down of my thoughts on each track on this new 2021 version of “McCartney III”:

Find My Way (featuring Beck) – I actually really enjoyed this take. It reminds me a lot of ’80s McCartney and is the perfect link to the McCartney II album. It definitely has a much more experimental vibe much more so than the mix that was on the original album last year.

The Kiss of Venus (Dominic Fike) – Not bad but not my cup of tea. I do enjoy hearing a modern spin on this track but prefer McCartney’s original.

Pretty Boys (featuring Khruangbin) – I actually love this! Again reminds me of McCartney II. Love the atmosphere of this version. This takes the track to another level, very fun. Also reminds me of the late 1980s McCartney b-sides which I love.

Women and Wives (St. Vincent remix) – Now this is really cool. Great remix. Love the jazzy yet bluesy feel. I may prefer this mix to the original. I’m surprised at how much I’m really enjoying this album so far. It’s actually quite good probably my favorite on the album.

Deep Down (Blood Orange remix) – The beginning of this remix reminds me of Brian Wilson for some reason. I love the transformation of this track too, really interesting. While I love the original track this remix has a little bit more variation which is really fun to hear. This remix has a bit lighter touch than the original yet still atmospheric.

Seize the Day (featuring Phoebe Bridger’s) – Now I really enjoy this version. I like Bridger’s vocal. This is modern yet retro as well – my sweet spot. One of my favorites on the album. It shows how strong McCartney’s writing is when other people can make the songs shine.

Slidin’ (EOB remix) – I still really love this song it reminds me of the great lost Wings single from the ’70s. This remix is actually pretty terrific. This sounds a little bit more like the Foo Fighters but still very interesting.

Long Tailed Winter Bird (Damon Albarn remix) – Pretty cool remix actually. A little soul, a little techno – great vibe to this mix. I still prefer the original but this is pretty cool.

Lavatory Lil (Josh Homme) – Not bad but doesn’t add much to the track. Not horrible. Not my favorite but I can listen to it, interesting.

When Winter Comes (Anderson .Paak remix) – This is interesting but I love the simplicity and the beauty of the original. Fun and not bad but the original is a minor McCartney classic that really stands on its own and doesn’t need a thing added to it.

Deep Deep Feeling (3D RDN remix) – I’m kind of meh on this remix. I like the atmosphere of the original much much better. Probably my least favorite remix on this album though I do enjoy the “Temporary Secretary” riff throughout. This may grow on me.

Long Tailed Winter Bird (Idris Elba remix) – Interesting but near the bottom on my list of the remixes on this album. There are parts I enjoy but maybe a little too modern sounding for my taste.

There you have it. One really good new/old yet new Paul McCartney album – and that’s never a bad thing.

Like I said when I’m wrong I’m wrong. I’ll think I’ll actually come back to this album a lot. It’s very atmospheric and much much better than I was anticipating. This time around though I’m skipping the multi-colored vinyl editions and different cover variations – this one CD version will do me just fine.

But I’m happy to say that this CD is a really well worth seeking out especially for all those other old fart McCartney fans out there who may have pooh-poohed it. Go on, give it a try. Hunt down a copy or hunt it down online. It’s really fun and very Paul McCartney.

Well, there you have it. Just a quick note on this new Paul McCartney album. I’m old so it’s time to take a nap.

Until next time be well and see you soon.

Take care and be well … AND GET VACINATED!!!