Listen to the hooks of each song on the first half of the Beatles’ second album and one sticks out like a sore thumb. Sandwiched between sunny choruses promising, “It won’t be long, yeah (yeah!), ’til I belong to you,” “All my loving, I will send to you,” and “There was love all around, but I never heard it singing…till there was you,” you’ll find the decidedly more rain-soaked, “Go away, leave me alone, don’t bother me.” Do I even need to tell you that it was written by George Harrison?
What’s less obvious is that George also wrote The Autobiography of Malcolm X.
Considering it was the first song he ever composed, it’s not a bad effort, and there’s nothing wrong with sprinkling in a dose of grumpiness alongside the more chipper selections on With the Beatles. I really like the guitar work but the woodblock makes the whole thing feel clunky and throws off the song’s pace. It’s like they couldn’t decide whether it should be a tough ballad or a gloomy rocker, and the end result is the unsatisfying in-between.