This week marks 50 years since the release of The Beatles’s self-titled ninth record, known more adoringly by the world as The White Album.
If the cover is as simple as they come – a sea of white accompanied by the band’s name imprinted just over halfway down – the tracks it contains are anything but: a compilation of oddities with varying genres that were clearly deemed too extraordinary for the charts (none were released as singles in the UK).
The majority of tracks were written in the spring of 1968 when the quartet famously travelled to Rishikesh in India to partake in a course of Transcendental Meditation under the guidance of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. When the band returned home, their recording sessions for the album would spark creative differences, prompting walkouts and rivalries that would continue until the group disbanded in 1970.
The White Album may showcase both the top and bottom of each band member's game, but the result remains The Beatles’s most enchanting record. Below is a ranking of all 30 tracks.