THE ROLLING STONES

(UNITED KINGDOM)

VOODOO LOUNGE

(1994)
LABEL:

VIRGIN

GENRE:

ROCK

TAGS:
Bluesy, Easy-Listening
"If it is not the best album of the Rolling Stones, "Voodoo Lounge" is nevertheless an undeniable success."
LOLOCELTIC (28.05.2014)  
4/5
(0) opinions (0) comment(s) (1) Biography + (6)
There was a lot to worry about during the five years following "Steel Wheels", an album that was nevertheless reassuring as to the artistic health of the Rolling Stones. First of all, Bill Wyman decided to leave the band. On the advice of Charlie Watts, he is replaced by Darryl Jones (Sting, Miles Davis, Eric Clapton), without the latter being able to obtain the status of full member. Then it was Keith Richards who decided to devote himself to a solo album ("Main Offender" - 1992), followed closely by Mick Jagger ("Wandering Spirit" - 1993). The relations being more and more tense between the two charismatic leaders, the speculations started to swell until the group met again around the producer Don Was to record its 20th album (22nd for the US market), an opus entitled "Voodoo Lounge" in the honor of a stray cat saved by Keith Richards in Barbados and having elected residence on the terrace of the guitarist.

Passed these historical details which are not without importance, it is then time to concentrate on the contents of this new opus for which Don Was had to show a great diplomacy. Decided to bring back the Rolling Stones to sounds in relation with their past, he also had to manage the repeated conflicts between Jagger and Richards, the first one wishing to get closer to more trendy things while the second one was involved to come back to the roots of the band. At the level of the sound, the paw of Was is undeniable. More rock, efficient and clear, the production emphasizes each instrument, in particular Watts' drums, proving the finesse and the technique of the most discreet member of the band ('Moon Is Up', 'Suck On The Jugular').

With 15 tracks on the counter, "Voodoo Lounge" starts off with an unexpected energy and an unstoppable sense of catchiness. Reminiscent of Keith Richards' 'Wicked As It Seems', 'Love Is Strong' opens the hostilities on a groovy note, relayed by the direct and irresistible 'You Got Me Rocking' followed by 'Sparks Will Fly', a song inspired by a dispute between Keith Richards and Jerry Lee Lewis. Invited to come and play, the latter had started to want to direct the musicians of Richards who had quickly made known his dissatisfaction with all the diplomacy which can be his.

What follows is a tour of many of the band's familiar areas. The ballads are for the most part very successful such as 'Out Of Tears', delicate and moving or 'Blinded By Rainbows' and its subtle balance between serenity and emotion. Rocks are direct and efficient ('I Go Wild') and some attempts of more modern evolutions imposed by Jagger manage to slip into the tracklist like 'Suck On The Jugular' at the border of R'nB, while Keith Richards puts his sandpaper voice on two tracks.

In the end, if it is not the best album of the Rolling Stones, "Voodoo Lounge" is nevertheless an undeniable success. Perfectly managed Don Was, Richards and Jagger prove once again what great composers they are and how the explosive alchemy between them is unique. Solidly attached to its roots without locking itself in a sterile conservatism, here is an album which will be without any doubt a new essential of the discography of this legendary group.
- Official website

TRACK LISTING:
01. Love Is Strong - 3:50
02. You Got Me Rocking - 3:35
03. Sparks Will Fly - 3:16
04. The Worst - 2:24
05. New Faces - 2:52
06. Moon Is Up - 3:42
07. Out Of Tears - 5:27
08. I Go Wild - 4:23
09. Brand New Car - 4:15
10. Sweethearts Together - 4:45
11. Suck On The Jugular - 4:28
12. Blinded By Rainbows - 4:43
13. Baby Break It Down - 4:09
14. Thru And Thru - 6:15
15. Mean Disposition - 4:07

LINEUP:
Benmont Tench: Claviers
Charlie Watts: Batterie
Chuck Leavell: Claviers
Darryl Jones: Basse
Frankie Gavin: Violon & Flute
Ian Neville: Claviers
Keith Richards: Chant / Guitares
Mark Isham: Trompette
Mick Jagger: Chant / Harmonica & Percussions
Ron Wood: Guitares
   
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