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33 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Change Of Direction From The Stones
'Between The Buttons' is a little lighter and possibly a little more uneven than the Stones previous album 'Aftermath'. However it still contains some very inspired moments although its style is less than typical for the Stones.

'Between The Buttons' fits very well into the timeframe it was recorded (late 1966) as its musical direction is quite typical for a...
Published on 4 Oct 2006 by Jervis

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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Rolling Stones' Abandoned Baby
Parked unobtrusively between the critically acclaimed Aftermath and the misguided (though enjoyable) psychedelic pudding, Their Satanic Majesties Request, was this musical curiosity from the Rolling Stones: Between the Buttons. Released at the beginning of 1967, Between the Buttons emerged at a time when the Stones were jaded after three years in the limelight, and it...
Published on 20 Mar 2010 by A.G.


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33 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Change Of Direction From The Stones, 4 Oct 2006
By 
Jervis - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Between The Buttons (UK Version) (Audio CD)
'Between The Buttons' is a little lighter and possibly a little more uneven than the Stones previous album 'Aftermath'. However it still contains some very inspired moments although its style is less than typical for the Stones.

'Between The Buttons' fits very well into the timeframe it was recorded (late 1966) as its musical direction is quite typical for a number of groups from around that time (for example The Kinks). There is a certain vaudeville influence on one or two of the songs as well as a real Old English flavour to virtually all of the songs.

On the whole the songs work extremely well with Brian Jones once again making his mark playing some unusual instruments. I particuarly love his accordian playing on the waltz influenced 'Back Street Girl'. It's a little like 'Lady Jane' with its slight aristocratic associations. 'Yesterday's Papers', 'Connection' and 'Who's Been Sleeping Here? are all great - the latter featuring a cast of characters is very reminiscent of Bob Dylan's in its style of writing. 'She Smiled Sweetly' is another unusual sounding song - this time resembling a church sermon.

The only times the album sounds less convincing is when the Stones put more emphasis on the vaudevillian influences ('Cool Carm And Collected' and 'Something Happened To Me Yesterday') yet these songs are still very enjoyable.

'Between The Buttons' is a long way from the Stones more celebrated style of music yet it contains a number of real treasures. It's just a shame the Stones today seem to neglect so much this rich part of their musical legacy.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classy Melodic Stones Album, 25 Sep 2009
By 
N. Watts (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Between The Buttons (UK Version) (Audio CD)
It still puzzles me why this album is so criminally ignored, especially in direct comparison to 'AFTERMATH' which is considered a classic by critics. There isn't a duff track on the album (how many other Stones albums can you truly say that about? Maybe 'STICKY FINGERS'?) which is completely written by Jagger/ Richards.

Perhaps the most striking difference when compared to most Stones albums is that it is far less rock/ rhythmn & blues orientated; instead its an album chock full of melodic pop songs. Lyrically it still features the 'poison pen' approach that the Stones have always been good at but with a new found musical awareness (check out the waltz time accordian driven 'Backstreet Girl' or psych-pop of 'Yesterday's Papers').

This perhaps is the key to the success of the album, as the music goes into Dylan terrority ('Who's Been Sleeping Here?'),vaudeville ('Cool, Calm, Collected'),psychedelia ('Please Go Home') and Dixie Jazz ('Something Happened To Me Yesterday'). In addition the songwriting is very strong as they rely less on riffs and more on melody and harmony. On several songs Jagger seems to really attempt to stretch his vocal range and its actually quite appealing.

The Stones would continue in this "softer" direction with the even more psychedelic (and indulgent) 'THEIR SATANIC MAJESTIES REQUEST', before returning to their roots with 'BEGGARS BANQUET'. They haven't really strayed too far from their core sound since. Given the fact that tracks from this album are rarely found on Stones comps it makes getting this album all the more essential.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Rolling Stones' Abandoned Baby, 20 Mar 2010
This review is from: Between The Buttons (UK Version) (Audio CD)
Parked unobtrusively between the critically acclaimed Aftermath and the misguided (though enjoyable) psychedelic pudding, Their Satanic Majesties Request, was this musical curiosity from the Rolling Stones: Between the Buttons. Released at the beginning of 1967, Between the Buttons emerged at a time when the Stones were jaded after three years in the limelight, and it showed; the album didn't really know what it was about and the band seemed momentarily bereft of inspiration. Consequently, this is the Rolling Stones album that time has all but forgotten, perhaps deliberately so; Mick Jagger later said he hated it.

Yet Between the Buttons is not really a bad album as such; it's just not a very memorable one. It contains a number of enjoyable songs, and in places it is musically quite stylish, lyrical and poignant, though the adjective of choice for all the tracks here on offer is 'lightweight'; no song from Between the Buttons will ever pop up on a list of the Rolling Stones' best. That said, there is a strangely modern feel to this album, and if I was hearing two or three of its songs for the first time, I'd never guess that they were four decades old.

The track list is a mix of high-tempo pop songs, some very English whimsy, and a couple of maudlin, downbeat tunes. A few studio 'effects' are in evidence and the guitars clearly benefited from a fuzzbox or two, though the reverb was overdone. All Sold Out, Connection, and Complicated are probably the pick of the upbeat songs, the latter especially, while My Obsession and Please Go Home, though interesting, are messy and sloppily produced. The two slow tunes, She Smiled Sweetly and Back Street Girl, are both endearing, with the second being actually quite beautiful. Something Happened to Me Yesterday is a five-minute whimsical effort that completes the set, and is unusual in that Keith Richards sings the chorus. The song is fun.

It's difficult to know who will buy this album now; Stones fans will already own it, and its reputation is not so great as to attract many curious listeners from the present. However, Between the Buttons, though critically damned over the years, is an eccentric and interesting collection that still deserves our attention. This album was probably the last gasp from the Rolling Stones as pure pop stars before they slowly morphed into "the greatest rock and roll band in the world" with the seminal albums Beggars Banquet and Let it Bleed, so because of its role as an important link between the first two stages of the band's evolution, Between the Buttons deserves to be remembered and enjoyed.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very underrated classic stones mk 1, 30 Sep 2003
By A Customer
This is a very underrated album and it's about time it received due praise. At the time of its original release (Jan '67) it garnered good reviews in the music press (best stones album yet etc etc) but has sadly suffered in the years since, partly due (possibly) to the stones' intense dislike for the album (both jagger and richards called it 'crap').
Which is a shame because there really is a lot of great music present. The musicianship is more accomplished than the earlier albums (ie. the overrated Aftermath)and each band member excels.
Lots of weird and wonderful instruments played by Mr Jones; great and innovative guitar playing from Mr Richards (i.e.Miss Amanda Jones); Jagger is in fine voice and the drum sound is excellent throughout (i.e. Yesterday's Papers). 'Something happened to me yesterday' has Keith's first recorded solo vocal (shared with Mick). There's not a bad track on it.
The series of classic Stones albums begin here. Right through to It's Only Rock n Roll and Mick Taylor's departure.
Recommended!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars to be SACD or not to be SACD, 12 Sep 2010
By 
Gav (Bournemouth) - See all my reviews
While this is obviously a classic Stones album (of it's time), it's the Amazon categories that are at fault here. It's not an SACD, even though it's listed as such. So anyone who thinks they're gonna get a bargain SACD, beware. That was me!
I didn't send it back though - so it must be pretty good!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Stones 'Marmite' Album., 18 Nov 2009
By 
S. Muzyka (Rugby,Warwickshire,England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
No other Stones album divides opinion quite like this one. Speaking personally, it's my favourite. I first heard the album when I was about 5 years old as I was hooked on music from a very early age and could use the family record player before I could tie my shoelaces. My dad had all the early Stones L.P's and singles and I enjoyed them all but this was the album I played again and again. I absolutely loved it and still do. Unfortunately, some so-called Stones fans are very sniffy about this record. They seem to be affronted by the fact the group are clearly having fun on tracks like 'Cool,Calm & Collected' and Something Happened To Me Yesterday' Lighten up! It's okay to do fun songs now and again. The album contains many top-notch songs with 'Yesterday's Papers' 'Back Street Girl' 'All Sold Out' and 'Miss Amanda Jones' particular highlights. The fact that Mick and Keith have nothing good to say about the album does it no favours either but it's a far more enjoyable listen than the previous 'Aftermath' (good but not a masterpiece) which is often over-praised. Soundwise, the original mono vinyl that I grew up listening to was very murky (a result of the band doing too many overdubs onto a 4-Track machine), but 'Yesterday's Papers' ran a full 20 seconds longer than the stereo mix which is the only version (officially) available on C.D. For this reason I strongly advise seeking out the mono version of this album for the definitive mix of this track. As for the new SACD Re-master, the sound has been improved tremendously and for a fan of the album it's good to have the choice between the hi-fi stereo C.D. and the more 'authentic' mono mix. I know Stones fans either love it or hate it but all I can say is it's the most enjoyable album they've ever made and that should be reason enough to add it to your collection.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rolling Stones going Merseybeat, 21 Dec 2007
This review is from: Between The Buttons (UK Version) (Audio CD)
If you like Hollies, Kinks and so on then this is the Stones album to get. More melodic than their otherwise more rock'n'roll based albums. As we all know there are two versions of this:
The UK version contains "Backstreet girl" (a nice ballad) and "Please go home" (a pointless rockier song). The US version instead contains their two hits "Let's spend the night together" and "Ruby tuesday". So all in all, the US version has more good songs. But if you own "Singles collection" or any similar compilation it's of course better to purchase the UK version since it contains only non-single tracks.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Semi-detached Suburban Stones, 11 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Between The Buttons (UK Version) (Audio CD)
The only song I knew from this album before I bought it was the superbly gutsy opener, 'Yesterday's Papers'. As a fan of the Brian Jones era, the prospect of an album containing eleven Stones songs I'd never heard before makes me wonder why I've waited so long to buy it. Perhaps my inexplicable delay could be down to the eternal critical dismissal of 'Between The Buttons' as the point when the Stones lost their way. But losing their way from what exactly? Giving their audience more of the same? They've certainly done that for the past 40 years, but it's worthwhile revisiting a period when the Stones were spreading their musical wings and absorbing what was happening around them rather than looking back to old bluesmen.
The Beatles, Kinks and Dylan appear to be the prime influences on 'Between The Buttons', with the recent release of 'Blonde on Blonde' evident in 'She Smiled Sweetly' and 'Who's Been Sleeping Here?'. But overall, I think this is the band's most recognisably ENGLISH album, their own answer to 'Revolver', if you like. And one element very present here that also permeated 'Satanic Majesties' is something that's conspicously absent from 'Beggar's Banquet' and 'Let It Bleed' - a sense of humour. It's present in 'Cool, Calm and Colllected' as the band speed up at the song's frenetic climax, and in Jagger's sign-off at the end of the Music Hall-meets-Dixieland Jazz closer, 'Something Happened To Me Yesterday', reminding the listener to wear something white if they go out at night, a witty touch that had no place during the band's headlong dive into Americana that coloured their musical palette from '68 onwards. They actually sound as if they're having fun and enjoying themselves on here - and why not?
As with The Beatles, the stresses and strains of touring had come to an end and the Stones were able to take stock, survey the landscape they'd created, finally enjoy the material fruits of their labours, and begin to use the album as a freeform vehicle for their sonic explorations. But Brian Jones needed decent songs to justify his elaborate instrumentation, and there are some decent songs on this album, the best perhaps being the marvellous 'Backstreet Girl' - and how this song isn't more well-known is a genuine mystery.
With one of the great 60s sleeves, capturing the band as five stoned wanderers in an atmospherically wintry London park, the contents are definitely worth checking out, especially the proper UK version without the two singles tagged-on. Any library of mid-60s British Pop, when the leading lights turned away from America and began to look closer to home for inspiration, is incomplete without this album to sit alongside the more celebrated examples of a brief but enduring sub-genre.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A GEM, 30 Dec 2011
This review is from: Between The Buttons (UK Version) (Audio CD)
This album was panned by the critics in 1967 because it was so different from Aftermath (1966) and opinions tend to be for or against rather than neutral. I think it's a gem and my son (aged 22) plays it all the time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars When Brian ruled., 30 Oct 2009
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This review is from: Between The Buttons (UK Version) (Audio CD)
This is an album when Brian Jones heavily influenced the Rolling Stones output. More lyrical, less rock. If you were around at the time you'll know whether you like it or not, if you weren't then you can find out that the Rolling Stones weren't always just a vehicle for Mick's pout.
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Between The Buttons (UK Version)
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