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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Its only the most surprising remaster...
Let me say straight out that I am a lifelong Stones fan and I have had this album since it was released in October 74. To be honest for me, it has never been in the class of their purple patch (Beggars Banquet through to Exile on Main St) but of all the recent remastered albums I think this one has come up with the biggest shine.

It has its high spots; the...
Published on 18 Feb 2011 by R. G. Bell

versus
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Insubstantial Offering From The Stones
'It's Only Rock 'n' Roll' does display some rock 'n' roll vitality which is largely missing from the previous more subdued 'Goats Head Soup' but this hardly results in contributing to a great Stones album. In fact it's difficult to claim it's even a good album although it does have its moments.

The album's first three songs are all highly energetic, displaying...
Published on 27 Sep 2006 by Jervis


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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Its only the most surprising remaster..., 18 Feb 2011
By 
R. G. Bell (Ascot, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: It's Only Rock 'N' Roll (Audio CD)
Let me say straight out that I am a lifelong Stones fan and I have had this album since it was released in October 74. To be honest for me, it has never been in the class of their purple patch (Beggars Banquet through to Exile on Main St) but of all the recent remastered albums I think this one has come up with the biggest shine.

It has its high spots; the title track, the Philly inspired "If you really want to be my friend," Fingerprint FIle with its echoes of post Watergate paranoia, and the fabulous Time waits for no one with My Taylor playing some beautiful guitar are all excellent. If you can't rock me, Ain't too proud to beg and Dance Little Sister are all more than credible as album tracks and considerably sharper thanks to the remastering process. All that said, Till the next goodbye is toe curdling bad and Luxury despite a great review from the writer Roy Carr, is an attempt at reggae cross over which doesn't quite get there - in fact Jagger's attempt to sound vaguely Jamaican doesn't help proceedings. As for "Short and Curlies" well along with the album cover I think it might have been better left for another day.

In summary, some high points, a sparky intro / opening to the album, Mick Taylor's playing on Time waits for no one and the overall quality of the remastering make this worthy of further investigation. At time of writing this can be purchased for less than 7 from Uncle Amazon which in my book is good value for money.

If you have all of their albums from the aforementioned purple patch then this is worth buying - more to this album than one might initially think on first listen and on balance it would compare quite favourably with most of their output post "Tattoo You."
I hope the above helps
Roger Bell
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I know, its only rock & roll but I like it..., 6 Feb 2006
By A Customer
This review is from: It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (Audio CD)
I would give this 4.5 stars but have rounded up. The last Stones album to feature Mick Taylor and the first one to be produced by Jagger and Richards under their pseudoname 'The Glimmer Twins'.
ITS ONLY ROCK N ROLL is not as good as 'STICKY FINGERS' or 'EXILE ON MAIN STREET' but much better than the previous 'GOATS HEAD SOUP' in which the group sounded drained of energy and is a much better album than is given credit.
Some really good tracks on the first half - the title track, the opening 'If You Can't Rock Me', 'Til the Next Goodbye' and 'Time Waits for Noone', although long, has got one of Mick Taylor's best guitar solos. Side two unfortunately features some filler; 'Dance Little Sister' is overly repetitive, as is 'Short and Curlies', although the latter is quite amusing. 'Luxury' is a strong stab at reggae and the closing 'Fingerprint File' is excellent.
Enough good stuff to ensure that it remains a permanent fixture in my collection. Only recently upgraded from the vinyl to the remastered CD which enhances the sound quality. This and 'SOME GIRLS' are easily the best Stones albums post 'Exile on Main Street'. The others are fairly average. 'Its Only Rock N Roll' is well worth considering.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Its only a rock'n'roll remaster but I like it!, 19 May 2009
By 
Smitty Werbenjaegermanjensen (real name) (Thread rehab facility 37) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: It's Only Rock 'N' Roll (Audio CD)
As I stated in my review of Sticky Fingers 2009 remaster I got the rest of this current batch of remasters. This one is a real relevation. Once again the new technology has allowed more information and less dirt/noise to get through.

I always beleived that there was no excuse for a duff sounding record since about 1950 as the technology and talent to nail a great performance onto tape was out there. The proof is in the loads of stunning jazz and classical recordings that folk have in their collections eg. Kind Of Blue by Miles Davis. Giles, Giles and Fripp 1968 "The Brondesbury Tapes" is a testament to the ingenuity of Peter Giles' abilities with a Rvox F36 two track recorder in the modified front room of their flat in London, and sounds stunning.

So where did the Stones go wrong? The only reason I can think of to explain away the muddy sound that this album suffered under until now is the wholehearted joining of all involved in "recreational" pursuits. The music was presented in a sonically murky and limited way.

The last remaster, Apogee chiz chiz by Bob Ludwig, went a long way to redressing this problem, however this version is noticeably better again. Jaggers singing really stands out, the guitars all sound well separated, previously unnoticed keyboard parts make themselves known.

At last the album can be heard as it ought to be, bright and shiny lively music and not a grimy trudge. The overall sound on this album is improved by a larger margin than Sticky Fingers.

Disappointing sleevenotes, uplifting music!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 stars for the music; 3 stars for the package, 8 May 2009
By 
Amazon Customer (Livingston Scotland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: It's Only Rock 'N' Roll (Audio CD)
So the first batch of Stones remasters are upon us and what are we getting for our hard earned cash?

The packaging is the same as the previous Virgin issues from 1997, no extra photos from the cover shoot or sessions. No insightful sleeve notes from someone like Roy Carr or Charles Shaar-Murray whose long out of print Rolling Stones - An Illustrated Record is still required reading.

The mastering is an improvement over previous issues but not as startling as I would have expected given high resolution technology etc. It is still better than the original vinyl which was a bit muddy in places.

On the down side the discs have not been issued as hybrid s.a.c.d. like the A.B.K.C.O. issues of the Stones' Decca back catalogue from a few years back which set the bar higher for Stones issues.. The c.d. cases are also those flimsy super audio jewel boxes which seem to be the fashion these days and they break all too easily.

As for the the music I now feel that this is a much under rated album having initially been viewed as part of a creative slide after Exile On Main Street. I think time has been a bit kinder to it. Mick Taylor excels and Keith's rumoured absences during the sessions has yielded a different sounding Stones album.

A Stones nut like me will buy without hesitation. Others will have to decide if the sound improvement is worth the extra outlay.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars lf I could stick a pen in my heart..., 15 Dec 2003
This review is from: It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (Audio CD)
I've never understood why the Stones' 1974 offering has been so overlooked by both fans and critics. It is after all not only a far better record than the jaded 'Goat's Head Soup' and the lightweight 'Black n' Blue' that have sandwiched it in time. Of course it is also the final release by what most Stones' fans consider to have been the ultimate Stones line-up.
Mick Taylor's playing on his swansong is magnificent - 'Time waits for no-one' is beautiful and poignant. The Stones rock the room with the outrageous 'If you can't rock me', swagger like a bunch of drunks on 'Its only rock n'roll' and party like only they know how on 'Dance little sister'.
It adheres to the classic Stones album formula with a soul cover 'Ain't too proud to beg', a couple of ballads and closes with a riffing masterpiece 'Fingerprint File'.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I like it too....., 4 Sep 2003
By 
Docendo Discimus (Vita scholae) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (Audio CD)
The title track off 1974's "It's only Rock 'N Roll" may be the only real classic that this album has produced, but it's far from being the only good song here, and even the "filler" is quite agreeable.
The title song is one of rock's true classics...excellent guitar playing from both Keith Richards and Mick Taylor, and a supremely catchy chorus.
"Dance Little Sister", "If You Can't Rock Me" and "Ain't Too Proud To Beg" are tough and sinewy. "Time Waits For No One" and "If Your Really Want To Be My Friend" are two great rock ballads. "Luxury" is a fine, swinging, Calypso-tinged (!) tune, and the catchy, good-natured boogie of "Short And Curlies" is great fun.
"It's Only Rock 'N Roll" is, in my never appropriate humble opinion, one of the most well-arranged Stones records...it's not overproduced, sticking to a basic, yet muscular sound with lots of great guitar playing, and Nicky Hopkins and Ian Stewart add some excellent piano parts.
Definitely one of the better Stones albums...not quite on par with "Exile" or "Sticky Fingers", perhaps, but "It's Only Rock 'N Roll" is certainly more than worth your while.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Insubstantial Offering From The Stones, 27 Sep 2006
By 
Jervis - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (Audio CD)
'It's Only Rock 'n' Roll' does display some rock 'n' roll vitality which is largely missing from the previous more subdued 'Goats Head Soup' but this hardly results in contributing to a great Stones album. In fact it's difficult to claim it's even a good album although it does have its moments.

The album's first three songs are all highly energetic, displaying some great vitality. The only problem is once the listener has had a little time to digest them they've very little more to offer. They seem so very shallow as if the Stones were now content just going through the motions. Unfortunately this seems to be the problem with the rest of the album also.The ballads 'Till The Next Goodbye' and 'If You Really Want To Be My Friend' seem pleasant if lacking in a little substance.The Stones seem as though they are content at this point to just parody their former selves.

The most satisfying track for me is 'Time Waits For No-one' which succeeds mainly through guitarist Mick Taylor's wonderfully inspiring guitar solos. 'Luxury' with its slight reggae influenced sound (in particular the vocals) is another enjoyable track.

Ultimately though too many of the songs are a little too sketchy to be anything above average which leads to an album that is ultimately unsatisfying.

It's a scenario that Stones fan would become all too familiar with in the years that followed.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars And so farewell to the great Mick Taylor, 14 Mar 2010
This review is from: It's Only Rock 'N' Roll (Audio CD)
Mick and Keith have always come up with great ideas which have then been rendered special by the contributions of other band members (or guests). In the 63-69 period the fairy dust was sprinkled liberally by Brian Jones and between 1969-1974 it was Mick Taylor who held the magic wand. Regrettably, since 1974, fairy dust has only been sporadically available. So, back to this album - the last of Mick Taylor's era with the band - and it's a good one, although the first signs of future complacency are already here.
"If You Can't Rock Me" contains an addictive riff, and although the song doesn't really develop beyond the riff, it is so insistent that the track remains a strong one. "Ain't Too Proud To Beg" is one of the better Stones covers, but I prefer the original. "It's Only Rock n'Roll" is a wonderful swampy soup of a song - God knows how many guitars are on there from how many sessions - and I've always been surprised by its relative lack of success as a single. "Till The Next Goodbye" I regard as a lost classic. It is a simple, plaintive and evocative song about love and sees the Stones on top form. "Time Waits For No One" is already acknowledged as a classic, and showcases beautiful guitar work from Mick Taylor that lifts the track into a whole different class. Rumours are that Taylor co-wrote the track with Jagger and that his not receiving a writing credit was one slight too many. "Luxury" has a nice groove and "Dance Little Sister" has the drive and edginess to transform a one riff track to a near classic. "If You Really Want To Be My Friend" is where it starts to unravel for me. No matter how many times I listen to it I can never find it convincing. It sounds like Mick trying to write about something he can't personally feel or connect with. I find it slightly embarrassing. However, compared to "Short and Curlies" it is a masterpiece. A few reviewers see this as a fun song, but I think it's just lazy and uninspired. In fact, more than that, it is awful, and the start of the Stones placing at least one terrible track on each album. "Fingerprint File" is an interesting one. I can't say I warm to it greatly, although it is quite inventive. I would like it a lot better without the contrived whispery/shouty bit in the middle.
This album is good but not great, but the highlights are very good indeed. Certainly not deserving of the "Stones slump" tag that it was given back in '74. More tracks from this album should be played live.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Its only rock n' roll and its great!, 28 May 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (Audio CD)
This record is a fitting successor to 'exile on mainstreet', which was released two years before. The title track is a classic in its own right and there are several strong numbers to support it such as 'luxury', 'time waits for no one' and ' fingerprint file'. Overall this is a welcome addition to the stones' catalogue. oh yeah!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Seems to be a hidden gem in the Stones repertoire, 26 July 2007
By 
Adamski (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (Audio CD)
If this had come after Exile On Main Street instead of Goats Head Soup then it would have been far better received. People were still smarting about how the run of 4 great albums prior to that had been ruined when It's Only Rock 'n' Roll came along. This is a much warmer, melodic offering than the Stones had ever released and contains some fine lead guitar work from Mick Taylor. Keith took a bit of a back seat on this album due to his addictions and as a result the overall sound is less Stonesy, perhaps this different vibe is what puts some fans off? The songs are very strong and the production much more appealing than Goats Head Soup which was a bit of a shocker in my opinion. This is definitely one of my favourite Stones albums.
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