FC 36511 McCartney II
Produced by Paul McCartney
Released on May 1980
UK CHART POSITION #1 . . . US CHART POSITION #3 . . . GOLD RECORD
Find it at GEMM
FC 36511 cover  

K ronomyth 12.0: WINGING IT ON HIS OWN. A McCartney solo album is never a good sign. The first signalled the breakup of The Beatles; the second, the breakup of Wings. I’m fairly certain McCartney III is mentioned by name in Revelations. Of course, the breakup of Wings couldn’t be counted a disaster by any but Denny Laine and his dependents, and with an irresistible new song on the radio (“Coming Up”), McCartney II took its rightful place at the top of the charts. Those who heard the album were quickly struck by its new wave sensibilities; McCartney II is as close as Paul has come to making a Yoko Ono album. Synthesizers figure prominently in many of the songs, and the whole album has a herky-jerky feel to it. Saying McCartney II is underdone compared to London Town and Back To The Egg is misleading, since Paul has always taken a scrapbook approach into the studio. Yet the fact remains that the first McCartney album and McCartney II are different by design, as they find the artist at home on his own and unplugged from the star maker machinery. No doubt some people are galled by the mere existence of these albums, just as (presumably many) other people have gazed appreciatively into the window afforded by them. Compared to its earlier namesake, McCartney II features a stronger collection of actual songs, albeit filtered through a slightly distorted lens of synthesizers and pajama-time production. These songs are by turns too fast (“Coming Up,” “Temporary Secretary”) or too slow (“Waterfalls,” “One of These Days”), but at least listeners won’t be frustrated by tantalizing tidbits like “The Lovely Linda” or two too-short versions of “Junk.” Originally issued in the US with a one-sided, seven-inch single of “Coming Up (Live At Glasgow),” McCartney II has since been re-issued with a few bonus tracks (1993) and a bonus disc of unreleased and non-album tracks (2011) that features forty minutes of forgettable and sometimes regrettable music including “Rudolph the Half-Assed Reindeer” (a/k/a “Wonderful Christmastime”).

FC 36511 inner gatefold 32798 front cover AE7 1204 free 7-inch
FC 36511 inner gatefold 32798 front cover AE7 1204 free 7-inch

TRACK LISTING

  1. COMING UP    3:49
  2. TEMPORARY SECRETARY    3:13
  3. ON THE WAY    3:36
  4. WATERFALLS    4:41
  5. NOBODY KNOWS    2:51
  6. FRONT PARLOUR    3:30
  7. SUMMER'S DAY SONG    3:25
  8. FROZEN JAP    3:38
  9. BOGEY MUSIC    3:27
  10. DARKROOM    2:18
  11. ONE OF THESE DAYS    3:35
  12. (*Free 7-inch single:) COMING UP (LIVE AT GLASGOW)    3:51

    Expanded CD reissue bonus tracks
  13. CHECK MY MACHINE
  14. SECRET FRIEND
  15. GOODNIGHT TONIGHT

    Expanded 2CD Archive Collection bonus disc
  16. BLUE SWAY (WITH RICHARD NILES ORCHESTRATION)    4:33
  17. COMING UP (LIVE AT GLASGOW, 1979)    4:09
  18. CHECK MY MACHNE (EDIT)    5:50
  19. BOGEY WOBBLE    2:59
  20. SECRET FRIEND (FULL LENGTH VERSION)    10:30
  21. MR H ATOM/YOU KNOW I'LL GET YOU BABY    5:55
  22. WONDERFUL CHRISTMASTIME (EDITED VERSION)    3:47
  23. ALL YOU HORSE RIDERS/BLUE SWAY    10:10

    All songs composed by Paul McCartney

CREDITS

PAUL McCARTNEY -- instruments, voices, engineer, mixing
Linda McCartney -- additional vocals, photographs
Eddie Klein -- engineer (Coming Up live at Glasgow)
Mark Vigars -- engineer (Coming Up live at Glasgow)
Geoff Emerick -- mixing (Coming Up live at Glasgow)
Jon Kelly -- mixing (bonus disc track 12)

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK May 1980 Parlophone LP/CS PCTC 258 gatefold cover, lyric sleeve
US May 1980 Columbia LP*/CS FC/FCT 36511 gatefold cover, lyric sleeve,
LP feat. bonus 7-inch (*)
BRA 1980 Parlophone LP 6663812  
CAN May 1980 Columbia LP XFC 36511 lyric sleeve
SPA   Odeon LP C0680 63812  
YUG   Jugoton LP LSPAR 78024  
US   Capitol CD 52024  
UK August 9, 1993 Parlophone CD/CS 891372 digital remaster w. bonus tracks
JPN 2000 EMI/Toshiba CD 65512 limited edition w. bonus tracks
US 2011 MPL 2CDX 32798 Archive Collection w. bonus disc

 

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