As a self-professed music junkie, I must confess to having a mixed relationship with albums. While I love engaging in passionate debates about full-length records (shoutout to my podcast partner and loyal reader Eric Nyberg), the truth is…I rarely listen to albums in full. I would estimate that about 90% of the albums in my collection I’ve played from start to finish just one time. I’m all about individual songs. When I’m in the mood to hear a particular track, I’ll play it out of context. I’m not like those radio stations that always pair up playing Queen’s “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions,” or Led Zeppelin’s “Heartbreaker” and “Living Loving Maid.” I’m my own man, and I don’t need society to tell me how to play my music.
Telling me how to play my music is like telling Winnie the Pooh to put on some pants. It’s not going to happen.
But there is at least one brutally clear exception: the Abbey Road medley. If I want to hear even one of the eight components that make up this 16-minute suite, there’s a very good chance I’ll play the entire thing. Obviously, the songs are all connected (with a brief intermission between “She Came in Through the Bathroom Window” and “Golden Slumbers”), but more importantly, it’s a work of art. However, for the purposes of this ranking, where I have to judge songs on an individual basis, I think I’ve determined that there are four truly terrific songs that can stand on their own in the medley, while the other four benefit from being a part of this grand statement.
“Carry That Weight” is the third of these to show up on the countdown, after “Sun King” and “Polythene Pam.” Sure, there’s a nice guitar solo and kudos to the brass section, but the verses are a reprise of the melody of “You Never Give Me Your Money,” and the chorus is basically a singalong that isn’t any more advanced than what you’ll hear in “The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill.” It really shouldn’t be this high, but I’ve got my medley goggles on.
As for the last song that fills out the bottom half? You’ll find out soon enough.