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Paul McCartney & Wings: Band on the Run reissue

Concord

Recording in Lagos, Nigeria, proved to be a nearly disastrous decision as McCartney attempted to wax his third project with Wings, and fifth overall, in the summer of 1973. Local luminary Fela accused him of stealing his country's music, Paul and wife Linda were mugged at gunpoint and their demos stolen, and two of the band's members bailed before even leaving England. Somehow the threesome - which included guitarist Denny Laine - persevered, and with McCartney as ad hoc drummer, the result was his best-selling post-Beatles disc. The album's new reissue (its third in the digital era) benefits from slightly improved sound, but also includes a second platter of singles and live performances plus a DVD collecting stray videos and rare footage of the project's creation. Band on the Run remains a glowing example of how his taut, bouncy, melodic pop-rock coalesced into a batch of timeless tunes, many of which are considered his finest. (4 out of 5 stars)