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You got to hand it to the Stones: For a band who easily could have retired before some of us were even born and still would be considered one of the biggest bands ever, they still continue to make raw and catchy rock-music. A Bigger Bang makes no exception. Ok, in all fairness one must admit there’s nothing new on the album, but do we really the Rolling Stones to re-invent themselves? And although it’s no “Sticky Fingers” or “Exiles…” it’s still a good rock ´n´ roll album! 16 (!) songs on any album seems a lot and given the stones tendency to get lost in some of their more bluesy songs, the album would work better with a few less songs. The accusing finger points especially at mr. Richards, who (again) insists on having two songs sung by himself. Sorry Keith! I have great respect for you as an artist and songwriter but for some reason it’s always those few songs you sing that make the album seem longer than necessary! The variety of songs stretches from an almost Hellacopterish rock on the opening track “Rough Justice” to the roots blues of “Back Of My Hand”. The playing is loose and almost careless ,which of course is a bit of a trademark, but that is exactly why The Rolling Stones stand out and continue to sound raw and fresh. Mick Jagger is a frontman by the grade of God who spits out words even more vulgarly than in his youth and adds really the finishing touch to the whole thing. Even though the lyrics are mostly about broken hearts and dirty girls (there’s a song about a female dominatrix), the song that has got the most attention is “Sweet Neo Con”, which is a direct criticism of the Bush administration. Yeah, I know… Millionaires trying to prove they have a conscience, but Hey!!! These young rebels just got bleeped at the Super Bowl so I guess they’ve made Big Brother worried! They said it was for “sexual content” but I wonder…? So, if you’ve ever had any sympathy for the devil, checking out “A Bigger Bang” isn’t the worst of ideas. You might actually be surprised! But for those of you who consider the Stones to be a bunch of old farts who never did anything good anyway, this album won’t change your minds.
Saskia Meerbaum, translation: Klaudia Weber
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