to pretty much quote Paul from the ANTHOLOGY:
"It's the bloody WHITE ALBUM. Shut up!"
there IS a solo aspect to this album, but I don't think it hurts it at all. There were solo aspects before, too ("Yesterday," "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away," "Eleanor Rigby," "Within You Without You," and others), but that didn't tarnish the quality of the songs, or take away the Beatles stamp of approval on them. Years later, we hear (mostly from John and George) how they hated this and hated that, blah, blah, blah...but, that's Monday Morning QB-ing.
I have zero problem with the Beatles acting as each other's session musicians. I couldn't think of ANY other group of people I'd rather have. They were at the HEIGHT of their writing powers at this point, as well. Lennon's stuff is brilliant. Paul's stuff is brilliant. George's stuff is brilliant.
Had the Beatles stayed together, and put together a double album (or triple album by then) in 1970-71, I would have no trouble with songs from IMAGINE, ALL THINGS MUST PASS, and RAM done by the Beatles instead of session guys.
Obviously, a few of those RAM and IMAGINE songs that John and Paul wrote attacking each other might not make the cut (in particular, "How Do You Sleep?"), but, otherwise, I think it would have been pretty good stuff.
But, not as good as the WHITE ALBUM. Not NEARLY as good.
in years to come/they may discover/what the air we breathe and the life we lead are all about/but it won't be soon enough for me