November 15, 2009

The Beatles Box of Vision Takes A Catalog and Makes It Better

Come to think of it, my Beatles CDs really don’t belong on the same shelf as Bananarama and the Barenaked Ladies. Nothing against you other groups, of course; the Beatles are just better than you.

Even amid the bands and artists represented in the most comprehensive music libraries of countless audiophiles, the Beatles are indeed a special case. And for those (like this writer) who appreciate them as such, there’s now—lo and behold—a special case.

The Beatles Box of Vision (authorized and licensed by Apple Corp. LTD.) is designed with Fab Four aficionados and collectors in mind, boasting customized sleeves for all official compact discs that comprise the Beatles discography—from Please Please Me to Love—with album cover art designating each album's correct, chronologically-sequenced placement. 

Compatible (and issued to correspond) with the Beatles Remasters, for which it accommodates the digi-pack cases as well as the compact discs, it suits the regular CDs (minus the standard, plastic cases) just as well.

Undoubtedly the most intrinsically valuable piece in this package is a hardcover coffee-table book the size of an LP, in which the original album art for the band’s catalog—both the UK and US releases—is rendered in brilliant colors and thick-paper quality throughout nearly 200 pages. It's a fantastic visual document in an of itself, making the whole package all the more worth seeking out.

Supplement to the hardcover book is a (considerably thinner, paperback) Catalography, in which each official UK and US release is chronicled. An introductory essay by noted Beatles author Bruce Spizer introduces this constructive resource, followed by liner notes that accompany each title, lending context to each one—particularly the contrasts between albums released by EMI Records in Britain and those released by Capitol Records in America.

It should be noted that no music in any format is included here; this is strictly a companion collectible. And considering its contents, it’s a bit of a heavy one at that, especially with the hardback book inside. However, it’s not designed to be portable luggage. And for its intended function—as a custom-designed case that sits atop a shelf or coffee table—The Beatles Box of Vision is really something special.

The Beatles Box of Vision can be ordered at the product's official website.