My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Brief Background: Sticky Fingers was recorded over a period of a year from the end 1969 through January of 1971. “Brown Sugar” and “Wild Horses” were recorded at Muscle Shoals Studios in Alabama, the rest of the songs recorded in their mobile studio. The album is almost as famous for its packaging as it is for the songs it contains. The cover originally featured a working zipper and belt buckle which was done by Andy Warhol. The band had planned to record the follow-up to this album (what became Exile on Main St) at Muscle Shoals as well, but a whirl-wind of troubles forced the band to France.
What I think:
This is an album that has always snuck up on me when I think about how good it is. I always think “yea that’s a pretty damn good album going into it”, but I never expect to be blown away by it and I always am. Top to bottom you have the Stones at what might be their best (with the exception of “You Gotta Move”, see the white boys blues thing from post 779.)
I mean this thing starts out with the deceptively saccharine “Brown Sugar”, I think most people understand there is some sexuality in the song, but that first line is what the song is really about and for them to have it played on the radio and featured in commercials is really quite an oversight of meaning. Following that is probably the best one/two punch of ballads ever in “Sway” and “Wild Horses”, two songs that will fight for the chance to be stuck in your head over the next 24 hours. “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking” is a great jam, that was only supposed to be half as long as it is, but the band kept going to wonderful results. “Bitch” has a great horn section that sets up another great set of horns on “I Got the Blues” in which the Stones do their best imitation of Memphis Soul and pull it off with wondrous results. “Sister Morphine” is the Stones at their most creepy (and after reading the lyrics much less illicit than I thought it was). “Dead Flowers” follows with it’s mock country and is probably up there with “I Got the Blues as my favorite track on the album”. “Moonlight Mile” ends the album in a perfect ballad/anthem highbred about coming home. I can just see the full moon, the tall grass and and the back country southern gravel road.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? Ummm…. yea. One of the best ever.
Rating (Out of 5): 5
Sticky Fingers Amazon Review (Out of 5): 4.5
Is this my first time hearing this album? No (46/224)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 79%