This track – from 1967's Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band – comprises two different compositions: McCartney's more lighthearted middle section is sandwiched on both sides by Lennon's more somber, piano-driven verses. The two are connected by massive, noisy orchestral crescendos.
Lennon's haunting lyrics, inspired by a newspaper article about the death of a personal friend who was killed in a car accident in 1966, are placed in sharp contrast to McCartney's bridge, a story about a man drifting into a dream in the midst of his daily routine.
'A Day in the Life' is the final track on what Allmusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine calls the Beatles' most historically significant album, saying, "after Sgt. Pepper, there were no rules to follow -- rock and pop bands could try anything, for better or worse. Ironically, few tried to achieve the sweeping, all-encompassing embrace of music as the Beatles did here." Music writer Paul Grushkin has called the song "one of the most ambitious, influential, and groundbreaking works in pop music history," and appears on many top song lists.
'A Day in the Life':