- This vintage Decca pressing has incredible Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound from the first note to the last
- This Mono pressing (made from the mono tapes) will show you the real, honest sound of the early, early Stones
- White Hot Stamper sound on both sides – here’s the midrange magic that’s surely missing from whatever 180g reissue has been made from the tapes (or, to be clear, a modern digital master copied from who-knows-what-tapes)
- 4 1/2 Stars: “…[No. 2 includes] one of the group’s best blues covers, their version of Muddy Waters’ “I Can’t Be Satisfied,” which wasn’t released in America until 1973 and features some killer slide playing by Brian Jones.”
This vintage UK Decca mono pressing has the kind of Tubey Magical Midrange that modern records cannot even BEGIN to reproduce. Folks, that sound is gone and it sure isn’t showing signs of coming back. If you love hearing INTO a recording, actually being able to “see” the performers, and feeling as if you are sitting in the studio with the band, this is the record for you. It’s what vintage all analog recordings are known for — this sound.
If you exclusively play modern repressings of vintage recordings, I can say without fear of contradiction that you have never heard this kind of sound on vinyl. Old records have it — not often, and certainly not always — but maybe one out of a hundred new records do, and those are some pretty long odds.
The Real Sound of the Real Tapes
The best word I could use to sum up both the sound and the music on this record is HONEST. If you want to hear how early Rolling Stones records sound when they sound right, this is the ticket. This is the real sound of the early, early Stones.
Probably what any modern engineer would want to do to the album would only end up making it worse. It is what it is and that’s good enough for us. Since the tapes are now more than 60 years old, no reissue will sound remotely as good as this one.
Some tracks do sound quite a bit better than others, recorded as they were in three different locations (including Chess studios) by two different engineers (Ron Malo and Dave Hassinger).
The Stones wanted their stuff to sound like the old Blues albums they grew up on and revered, and with that sound in mind you can’t argue that they didn’t succeed here.