Tuesday , February 20 2024
The Rolling Stones: Chapter 4.

Music Review: The Rolling Stones – Out Of Our Heads

Out Of Our Heads, released July 30, 1965, was the Rolling Stones coming out party. The album would top the National American charts and quickly sell over a million copies.

The opening guitar line from “Satisfaction” has gone down in rock & roll history as one of the most recognizable. You can talk about signature songs for a group or artist but “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” remains a signature song for rock & roll.  

“Satisfaction” may be rock & roll but through it The Rolling Stones pay homage to their rhythm & blues roots. Through songs, such as “Satisfaction,” the Stones were changing their R&B vision and bringing it to the white American music buying consciousness. This adaptation of the rhythm & blues idiom into rock structures would be at the heart of The Rolling Stones continuing commercial appeal. “Satisfaction” quickly reached the number one position on the Billboard singles charts.  

“The Last Time” was one of the first songs that The Rolling Stones created rather than just recorded. Keith Richards laid down the rhythms, and then Brian Jones was brought in to intertwine his lead guitar throughout the songs structure. Finally the bass and drums were added to the mix. This layered sound was then matched to Mick Jagger's vocals. “The Last Time” was the true beginning of the modern Rolling Stones recording process.

“Play With Fire” was a great cover song for The Rolling Stones and Mick Jagger in particular. This negative love song was about London’s social strata. By this time Jagger was a part of the London elite that he was putting down. Mick Jagger also created a sexual tension that would not only continue throughout this song, but his career as well. In addition the harpsichord was a brilliant instrument to use for this bluesy ballad. 

Counting “Play With Fire,” there were now only four non-original songs on this album.

“Mercy Mercy” was a typical Rolling Stones frenetic run through a rhythm & blues standard. This long forgotten gem from the Rolling Stones catalogue is an excellent example of a favorite Stones recording technique. “Good Times” finds Mick Jagger bringing his raspy vocal to this smooth Sam Cooke song. 

I still enjoy “The Under Assistant West Coast Promotion Man.” This song was released as the flip side of the American single release, “Satisfaction.” The song has wonderfully satiric lyrics set to a fun and not very serious melody. It was a good counterpoint to the intensity of many of the other songs contained on this album.

Out Of Our Heads would establish The Rolling Stones as one of the most popular and creative bands in the world. Out Of Our Heads would also propel Jagger and Richards to write more and more of their own material. The Rolling Stones were now on their way to becoming the greatest rock & roll band in the world.    

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