After "A Bigger Bang" was released in 2005, some people claimed that it was the Rolling Stones' final album. Needless to say, they were wrong in their prediction. Instead of breaking up, RS decided to move forward with the mission of showing how long it is possible to keep a band relevant and active - in their case, it's been 61 years.
The biggest surprise of all was how tasty "Hackney Diamonds" turned out to be. Of course, it is too early to declare this to be "their best album.
Right now, what we have is a classic vinyl record, deemed among the top 2023 releases, that seems fitting to be added to one of the greatest compilations in the history of recorded music. This album, featuring 12 tracks and 48 minutes in length, is the band's most concise release since 1986's "Dirty Work." Some of the songs could even find a regular spot in the band's live set, something that hasn't happened since the wonderful "Start Me Up."
"Sweet Sounds of Heaven," a well-known soul ballad featuring Lady Gaga and Stevie Wonder, is among the best options here. The so-called "show stopper", it's easy to imagine it as one of the central points of a live show, which, apparently, will need to have more than 19 songs from now on.
The single "Angry", the disco "Mess It Up", and "Live by the Sword (Feat. Elton John)" (with drums by Watts, who died in 2021 and bass by Bill Wyman, who left the band in 1993) are also among the strongest of the work. The guitarist takes over vocals on, "Tell Me Straight".
The most intriguing aspect of "Hackney Diamonds" is probably the fact that it is an album by the oldest active band on the planet but it does not sound like a "farewell" or "reflection" work something that has become common with artists in their older age.
The last song, a cover of "Rolling Stone Blues ", which was performed by the two surviving members of the original lineup, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, the Bluesman Muddy Waters that inspired the band's name.
The credit here goes to producer Andrew Watt, who manages to work with Post Malone, Jung Kook and Justin Bieber, as well as Ozzy Osbourne and Iggy Pop.
He managed to keep the Stones sound contemporary without using any gimmicks of the modern music industry is quite an achievement.
"Hackney Diamonds" has the following songs:
Get Close (Feat. Elton John)
Depending On You
Bite My Head Off (Feat. Paul McCartney)
Whole Wide World
Mess It Up
Live by the Sword (Feat. Elton John)
Driving Me Too Hard
Tell Me Straight
Sweet Sounds of Heaven (Feat. Lady Gaga & Stevie Wonder)
Rolling Stone Blues