My attempt to blog all of the entries from the book 1001 Albums to Hear Before You Die
Brief Background: Exile on Main St was mainly recorded during 1971 and 1972 in Nellcote, France and later Los Angeles, CA. The double album was released in May 1972.
What I think: Here we have what many people consider one of the best albums of all time. It is also one of the most mythical albums ever released, because of it being recorded in France and the characters and shenanigans that happened during that recording. I agree that it’s a great album, but have always had a hard time buying into one of the best ever. I would personally rate Sticky Fingers as their best album and subsequently a better album than this. That being said, there are some amazing songs here. “Rocks Off” starts things with wonderful intensity and “Rip This Joint” keeps that going. “Tumbling Dice” is one of my all time favorite songs. “Sweet Virginia” has the Stones patented Faux-Country sound done to an amazing degree. So if you follow the track list of the album, all of the best songs are on the first disk. Leaving a lacking second disk that has some good stuff, but also has too much filler. Had this been a single album, I think I could get behind it so much more. So what I’ve done is picked twenty four minutes worth of music that I would have cut to get it down to a single album.
I would cut:
Now these aren’t all easy cuts for me. I really like “Shake Your Hip” and “Sweet Black Angel”, but I think “Happy” and “Stop Breaking Down” are better songs and make the album better in the end.
This tight 43 minute single album (or something similar) should have been the way they went.
Do I agree or disagree with the writers as to this being an album you must listen to? There is no doubt that this should be here, it just loses momentum just after the half-way point.
Rating (Out of 5):4
Exile on Main St Amazon Review (Out of 5): 5
Is this my first time hearing this album? No (65/280)
Percentage of Albums that are new to me: 77%