Revolver is the seventh studio album by the English rock band the Beatles. Released on 5 August 1966, it was the Beatles' final recording project before their retirement as live performers and marked the group's most overt use of studio technology up to that time, building on the advances of their 1965 release Rubber Soul. The album's diverse sounds include tape loops and backwards recordings on the psychedelic "Tomorrow Never Knows", a classical string octet on "Eleanor Rigby", and Indian-music backing on "Love You To". The album was reduced to eleven songs by Capitol Records in North America, where three of its tracks instead appeared on the June 1966 release Yesterday and Today.
The Beatles recorded the album following a three-month break from professional commitments at the start of 1966, and during a period when London was feted as the era's cultural capital. The songs reflect the influence of psychedelic drugs such as LSD and the increasing sophistication of the Beatles' lyrics to address themes including death and transcendence from material concerns. With no thoughts of reproducing their new material in concert, the band made liberal use of studio techniques such as varispeeding, reversed tapes, close audio miking and automatic double tracking (ADT), in addition to employing musical instrumentation outside of their standard live set-up. Some of the changes in studio practice introduced by Revolver, particularly ADT, were soon adopted throughout the recording industry. The sessions also produced a non-album single, "Paperback Writer" backed with "Rain", for which the Beatles filmed their first on-location promotional films.
In the UK, Revolver's fourteen tracks were released to radio stations throughout July 1966. In the US, it was the last Beatles album to be subjected to Capitol's policy of altering the band's intended running order and content. The release there coincided with the Beatles' final concert tour, which was marred by the controversy surrounding John Lennon's remark that the band had become "more popular than Jesus". The record topped the UK Albums Chart for seven weeks and America's Billboard Top LPs list for six weeks. Together with the children's novelty song "Yellow Submarine", "Eleanor Rigby" became an international hit when issued as a double A-side single. The album cover was designed by Klaus Voormann, whose work combined Aubrey Beardsley-inspired line drawing with photo collage and went on to win the 1967 Grammy Award for Best Album Cover, Graphic Arts. The 1987 international CD release standardised the album's content to the original Parlophone version.
Revolver expanded the scope of pop music in terms of the range of musical styles used on the album and the lyrical content of its songs. The album was influential in advancing principles espoused by the 1960s counterculture and in inspiring the development of subgenres such as psychedelic rock, electronica, progressive rock and world music. Many music critics recognise it as the Beatles' best album, surpassing Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. The album was ranked first in Colin Larkin's book All-Time Top 1000 Albums and third in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the "500 Greatest Albums of All Time". In 2013, after the British Phonographic Industry had changed its sales award rules, Revolver was certified platinum in the UK. The album has been certified 5× platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America.