Saturday, November 8, 2008

Coming Down Again

Goats Head Soup
Side One, Track Three
"Coming Down Again" – 5:54

[Download link]

Why does every song on this album sound like a Tattoo You reject?

That's probably unfair. It's just that I heard Tattoo first, as an impressionable young man. If I was born in 1961 instead of 1971 I would probably be commenting on how the Stones ripped off their own Goats Head album to make Tattoo.

Anyway. "Coming Down Again" is an almost impossibly vanilla ballad, overproduced and 70s-mellow in that way I hate so much. Wikipedia tells me that

"Coming Down Again", in the words of Tom Maginnis, "...concerns the well-worn topic of love gone bad." The lyrics tell of Richards' relationship with then-girlfriend Anita Pallenberg and his taking of her from Brian Jones.
Heavy. I'd love to hear how Keith approaches this soul-bearing topic...
Slipped my tongue in someone else's pie
Tasting better every time
He turned green and tried to make me cry
Being hungry it ain't no crime
Oh. Wow, Keith. What say you never write lyrics again, okay?

Also, Mick's funny backing vocals.

Friday, November 7, 2008

100 Years Ago

Goats Head Soup
Side One, Track Two
"100 Years Ago" – 3:59

[Download link]

I spent 10 minutes trying think of what song the Stones ripped off for "100 Years Ago" before I gave up. My conclusion: although it appears that the band created the song from scratch, it is bland enough to recall a thousand other mediocre songs.

Some passing notes because the song is far too forgettable to inspire me to compose actual paragraphs:

  • No, it's really bugging me: what song are they ripping off for the first section of the song? If you know, drop me a line.
  • That is Billy Preston on the clav. Man would play for anyone, wouldn't he?
  • That is the full Mick Voice for the "lazybones" bit.

  • Let's let wikipedia do my job:

    Credited to Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, guitarist Mick Taylor said at the time of its release, "Some of the songs we used (for the album) were pretty old. '100 Years Ago' was one that Mick [Jagger] had written two years ago and which we hadn't really got around to using before."[1] The song is described by Tom Maginnis in his review as having a, "wistful air with a country lilt... before making several tempo shifts into a funky, sped-up groove..."[2] The song's lyrics see Jagger reflect on aging;
    Now all my friends is wearing worried smiles, Living out a dream of what they was; Don't you think it's sometimes wise not to grow up?
    Went out walkin' through the wood the other day; Can't you see the furrows in my forehead? What tender days, we had no secrets hid away; Now it seems about a hundred years ago
    The song then veers into a distinctive breakdown, slowing considerably before Jagger begins singing a verse in a noticeable drawl, before speeding back-up and turning into a funk jam of sorts.[2]

    Recording took place at Kingston's Dynamic Sound Studios in November and December, 1972, with a final mix conducted in June 1973. Jagger performs lead vocals and is accompanied by Taylor on backing. Taylor performs the song's guitars while Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts perform bass and drums, respectively. Nicky Hopkins provides piano while Billy Preston performs clavinet.