Not surprisingly, Abbey Road's "lighter" songs fare best from the dub overhaul. "Octopus' Garden" sounds charmingly bouncy, although Ringo Starr's vocals are replaced by a trumpet. Still, the song's original humorous, childlike tone fits in well with reggae. "Here Comes the Sun" also benefits from the dub treatment, although the horn section seems an unnecessary, overdone element for a delicate song. Still, the track works so well that it seems tailor-made for reggae. Ambient fans may enjoy "Something," which contains more electronic effects, although is curiously absent of lyrics.
However, it always comes back to whether some tracks do not lend themselves well to an upbeat treatment. "Oh! Darling" clearly illustrates the Beatles' love of the blues, with Paul McCartney's screaming vocals representing one of his best performances. On Abbey Dub, George Jamison's pleasantly smooth singing style seems counter to the song's gritty origins.
Then comes the biggest challenge: the Abbey Road medley. "Because" soars because of the Beatles' close harmonies (used to chilling effect on the Love soundtrack). Yellow Dubmarine chose to eliminate the vocals, perhaps feeling they could not duplicate the original. Instead, they let the horns do the heavy lifting, accompanied by very subtle percussion. While this certainly emphasizes the beautiful melody and chords, it strips "Because" of its best feature. "You Never Give Me Your Money," written during the Beatles' turbulent time fighting over Apple Corps and the future of the group, does not retain its original hopelessness and somewhat angry emotions. Conversely, "Sun King" works fairly well with a reggae/dub rhythm, although those distinctive Beatles harmonies do not shine through as much as on the original. Yellow Dubmarine's slower tempo on "Polythene Pam" robs the track of its back-to-basics rock and roll. But "Golden Slumbers" still sounds gentle with a mellow reggae beat, most likely due to its lullaby origins.