If you're looking for the ultimate Beatles collector's item, look no further than Beatles Box of Vision, a lavish storage case for not only the remastered CDs, but other releases such as the Anthology volumes, Love, Let It Be…Naked, and more. Ultimately the package provides the user with a powerful connection between two kinds of art: their music and their visual impact.
The cloth case holds a treasure trove of Beatles album artwork—an LP-sized book reproducing all the cover art, sleeve, and gatefold art for the UK and American releases; a Catalography guide to the Beatles' entire catalog; and vinyl sleeves in which to store CDs.
Each sleeve is emblazoned with a black and white reproduction of each album cover, enabling the user to easily store the CDs in chronological order. CD booklets may be stored right in the same sleeve as the discs. Both are held in separate sleeves, so the CD can be removed without disturbing the booklet.
Collectors will find the Catalography a particularly useful resource, as it displays the UK and American releases side-by-side. Essays explaining the differences in cover art and music content accompany each album. The tome also features an essay by Bruce Spizer, author of such essential reference books as The Beatles' Story on Capitol Records and The Beatles Are Coming: The Birth of Beatlemania in America.
The cloth-bound album artwork book displays, in beautiful full-color resolution, all cover artwork, back covers, and gatefolds from each Beatles release. Readers can view each cover in exquisite, close-up detail. Like the Catalography, the book includes the UK and American releases as well as special releases like Love and Let It Be…Naked.
As a final touch, the back of the cloth box is emblazoned with the last line from Abbey Road's “The End”: “And in the end/The love you take/Is equal to the love/You make.”
Jonathan Polk, creator of the Beatles Box of Vision, first conceived this ultimate tribute to The Beatles over nine years ago. The main catalyst was his continued frustration with CD storage issues and album artwork shrunk down to CD booklet size. “I wanted to address all the things that frustrated me about CDs, and what I felt was disconnecting fans, especially young fans, from artists and albums: the abandonment of large size album artwork, and the difficulty of organizing and displaying CD collections in a satisfying way,” Polk states.
After imagining the product, Polk encountered another obstacle: locating quality images of the album artwork, particularly more obscure photographs. “The actual Beatles package took close to two years to get together,” he explains. “The artwork comes from a combination of Apple Corps archives, EMI's archives, collectors and Ebay.” Eventually he hired a team of restoration experts who “color corrected, cleaned up and created the gorgeous prints. I learned a lot, and we spent many hours on very small details, but I had a great team to help me…with such beautiful art, I was not going to start skimping on the final product.”
The ultimate goal of the package, Polk states, is to reconnect fans with The Beatles' vast catalog. In addition, he wants to appeal to younger and older fans alike, “to give new young fans the context to appreciate the career and chronology of the Beatles, and on a much deeper level, so that it at least approximates how we got to appreciate it,” he says. “And of course, to give long time fans a context to re-connect with the artwork and their memories, especially when they pull out the remasters.”
Thus far, the Beatles Box of Vision has received positive reaction from fans. “I love hearing from fathers who sat down with their kids to listen together and look at the album covers and talk about what the music meant to them when they were kids,” he explains. “I get emails every day from people who are over the moon excited and in love with it. As long as they appreciate it—whether it is because of re-connecting with their memories, discovering new things, or getting to share it with their kids—I'm all good.”
The Beatles: Box of Vision retails for $89.99 (plus shipping) and can be ordered through the Box of Vision website. Descriptions of the box's contents as well as a virtual tour are also available on the site.