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4.6 out of 5 stars
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 17 April 2017
Arrived on time and as described.
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on 9 July 2017
Happy
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on 3 June 2017
Clear centred mono remaster, original British track list makes for a surprisingly fresh album of many unknown Stones recordings
Loving it on first listen
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on 16 May 2015
IMO the best Stones album ever!
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on 21 July 2017
Verry Good
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on 3 June 2014
I loved school. They say your schooldays are the best of your life and I wouldnae argue. I don't remember what I had personally after maths but I know it would have been a right bleeding laugh. Talking of which, mick Jagger's dad was a PE teacher, was he not, leading one thusly to surmise that a better, more apt, title might have been After-PE? Then again, perhaps I'm being daft, perhaps PE was After-Maths, after all. I'm quite sure young Mick liked PE as he's always kept himself fit, has he not? I remember seeing the boys at Roundhay Park, Leeds, back in 1982, and my god but the effort that that man put in, while Richards was famously drugged up to the eyeballs, Wood drunk, Watts sitting down, while Wyman (Perks) stood stiff as a board obsessing over sandwiches. Is Under Your Thumb on this, I love it? Some people thinks it's sexist, but what do women know, eh? And Out of Time's a classic too, similar sort of weft or weave or whatever. I sometimes think... But then sometimes I just don't bother. It's a shame how things have turned out though, isn't it, for the world, I mean, the human race and everything? It could have been so much better. How can some people sit on great stacks of money while others starve, little children suffer, are crushed, quite literally in some cases. And cricket, what on earth is that for?
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on 16 June 2017
Early era stones records were all patchy affairs, and 1966's 'Aftermath' was to be no different. Brilliant as the band now were, their prime cuts more often than not found themselves issued as singles only. This policy robbed aftermath of the majestic 'Paint it Black', and there simply wasn't (as yet) the quality to spare. 'Mother's Little Helper' and 'Stupid Girl' are both great, but overall a bit.. meh.
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on 11 March 2001
Hear about the Beatles' famous butcher cover? That photo was a protest against how some British groups' albums were being mangled Stateside. As a US fan, I've enjoyed the superior (and longer) UK versions of early Beatles albums made available in my country when their catalog was being issued on CD. Too bad the same hasn't been done with the Stones; worse, UK fans are being forced to endure the US reshuffles (splitting _Out of Our Heads_ into two separate albums, for example) and redundancies (_Flowers_, where "Out of Time" wound up, plus recycled tracks from _Aftermath_ and US _Buttons_)...
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Just to clarify one thing first. Below is the order of tracks on the original UK vinyl release. It was changed for US release with four tracks being dropped and "Paint it Black" being included. When the first CD release was made in the UK, Decca chose the US track selection rather than the UK selection. However with the release of several of the albums in digipak format in the UK in 2002, "Aftermath" (thankfully and at long last) reverted to the original fourteen tracks.

Mother's Little Helper
Stupid Girl
Lady Jane
Under my thumb
Doncha bother me
Goin' Home
Flight 505
High and Dry
Out of Time
It's not easy
I am waiting
Take it or leave it
Think
What to do

Not content with releasing a totally self-penned album, whereas previously only the odd few Jagger/Richard tracks had come out (and most of these on singles), the original and now restored, release of "Aftermath" contained fourteen tracks, one in excess of eleven minutes in length and with the total album lasting for longer than 53 minutes. All of this was revolutionary for a pop industry used to getting away with albums not much longer than thirty minutes.

So what were/are these tracks like? The first thing to say is that there's no trace of the Diddley and Berry sounds the lads had grown up with. Nor is there any real evidence of the Chicago blues they loved. There is some blues but it's not so easy to trace. "High and Dry" relates more to songs like "San Francisco Bay Blues" originally from Jesse Fuller but made popular by Ramblin' Jack Elliott. Ramblin' Jack was popular with the folk cum arty crowd in London with whom both Jagger and Richard had had some relationship (and not always amicable according to Keef's book). The old-timey sound of this track was utterly unlike anything the Stones had done before. Another blues track, "Goin' Home" is at once both more and less conventional in terms of blues. More, in that it uses recognised blues patterns. Less in that it strings all these together in one very long instrumental. The idea, and indeed, ambition, was good but the execution didn't quite match it - perhaps this idea might have been worth revisiting when Mick Taylor was on board.

The other songs are mixed and colourful: "Lady Jane" is a baroque cum historic number reminiscent of the Stones penned, Marianne Faithfull number, "As Tears go by"; "Think" and "Out of time" are melodramatic numbers written for Chris Farlowe, a London based white soul singer; "Take it or leave it" is light and poppy and formed a pretty good single for the Searchers; "Mother's little helper" is social comment - something the Stones hadn't concerned themselves with up to now; "Stupid Girl" has, perhaps, unfortunate words but is still a very neat little rocker; "Under my thumb" could well be bracketed with "Stupid Girl" but it has a light almost jazzy feel; and "I am Waiting" is one with an air of mystery.

Not only the songs but the instrumentation was new on this album. The story is of Brian Jones being let loose in a music shop. Certainly there's an argument that this was Jones' greatest hour - he features on more instruments than you can imagine - if there are some unusual sounds on a song then they most likely came from something played by Brian. But these sounds aren't gratuitous - they work.

There are a few throwaway songs here (mainly on the old vinyl side two) but every track has some attractions and a few are real standouts. When I first heard the album, back in those days, I was turned, overnight from a blues snob to someone who was interested in lots more forms of music (and whose next step was to go out and buy Dylan albums). It is still that good? Most definitely. To it's the first of the Rolling Stones classic albums.
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VINE VOICEon 1 October 2006
I think it's fair to say that to a point 'Aftermath' is greater than the sum of its parts.
That's not to say the songs are necessarily inferior but it's the culminative effect of the broad soundscope created primarily by Brian Jones that is perhaps its greatest strength. Brian dabbles with all types of sounds including rarely played instruments such as the dulcimer, marimbas and sitar to create arguably the most colourfully varied sound to be found within the entire Stones catalogue. Brian (and the Stones) never choose the obvious as a number of these songs could just as easily have been arranged to accommodate more traditional 'rock' arrangements. 'Lady Jane' with its dulcimer and harpsicord instrumentation could just as easily be mistaken for a 16th century Elizabethan ballad.
'Aftermath' does contain more than its fair share of great songs, however, in particular 'Mother's Little Helper', 'Lady Jane', 'Under My Thumb', 'I Am Waiting' and 'Out Of Time' - each one of them highlighting a different aspect of the range of Brian's instrumentation. It's not quite the typical Stones sound that one unacquinted with their albums would be familiar with but it's nonetheless crucial in understanding what the Stones are all about.
It's probably true to say there are a few fillers ('It's Not Easy', 'What To Do' etc.) and the eleven minute 'Going Home' doesn't seem to go anywhere but these songs fit into such a seductive whole that it hardly matters.
Many present day Stones fans long for the return of virtuoso guitarist (and Brian Jones replacement) Mick Taylor to help them reconnect with their primary influence the blues, but upon listening to this album it would be perhaps a good idea also for the Stones to reconnect with some of the more unusual influences Brian Jones brought to the group.
'Aftermath' is certainly the Stones first great album and a reminder that there needn't be limitations in what popular music can aspire to. There certainly wasn't at the time of the album's release back in 1966.
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