In my household, the answer to the all important, ever-essential, must-be-asked question (The Beatles or The Stones?)… was The Beatles. Saw ‘em on Sullivan, collected all their records and shut out far too many other artists in my endless quest to absorb their every utterance. As a result, I didn’t own any early Rolling Stones albums, despite the irony that I now listen to The Stones far more than The Beatles these days. I liked a lot of their music, and enjoyed albums like Flowers and Beggar’s Banquet via friends, but the LP that completely turned me around on The Stones was 1969’s Through The Past Darkly (Big Hits Vol. 2). Just in time, as it turned out, for their immortal string of LPs from Let It Bleed to Exile On Main St., each of which I devoured on release day. Despite Through The Past Darkly being a collection of hits and singles (some non-LP), to me it was a stand-alone album… and one of the best I had (with a great cover, to boot). Since I didn’t own much else from them, this US version, a smart cross-section of Oldham-era material (“Let’s Spend The Night Together,” “Mother’s Little Helper,” “Ruby Tuesday”), recent psychedelia (“Dandelion,” “2000 Lights Years From Home,” “She’s A Rainbow”) and the “new,” Jimmy Miller-produced Stones (“Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” “Street Fighting Man,” “Honey Tonk Woman”) was a perfect set that made for one great introduction to the best of the Stones’ varied stylings. Of course… having this collection these days is rather pointless, as this stuff is available in various configurations, rendering this set all but obsolete. But, there might be a few others, like myself, who grew to better understand The Stones as a result of this album (and maybe came to grips with the notion that there were other bands besides The Beatles). This is ripped from the 2002 ABKCO hybrid, two-layered, SACD gold disc. It even has a “Certificate Of Authenticity” (oh, boy). Which layer actually gets read during a burn is beyond me, but it sounds good either way. Find this CD version of Through The Past Darkly is at Amazon, HERE and, totally coincidentally… a new vinyl version was just released this week, too… HERE.
Paint It Black (3:24)
Ruby Tuesday (3:18)
She’s A Rainbow (4:13)
Jumpin’ Jack Flash (3:43)
Mother’s Little Helper (2:48)
Let’s Spend The Night Together (3:37)
Honky Tonk Women (3:02)
2000 Light Years From Home (4:47)
Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby, Standing In The Shadow? (2:36)
Street Fighting Man (3:15)
We’ve got more Stones if you want it… Exile On Main St. (Deluxe Edition) and the Exile Promo Flexi-Disc (HERE), Their Satanic Majesties Request (MONO) (HERE), Satanic Sessions, Volumes One, Two & Three – 12CDs (HERE), 2120 South Michigan Ave. (HERE), Stripped (Deluxe Edition) (HERE), Palais Royale Ballroom (2002, HERE), Singles 1963-1965, Singles 1965-1967 & Singles 1968-1971 (HERE), Ladies & Gentlemen… The Rolling Stones (HERE), The Brussels Affair ’73, Hampton Coliseum (Live 1981), Light The Fuse: A Bigger Bang Tour Toronto Live 2005, L.A. Friday (Live 1975), Live At The Tokyo Dome Tokyo 1990, Live At Leeds Roundhay Park 1982, Hyde Park Live 2013 (All HERE), The Harder They Come 1978 Rehearsal Tapes (HERE), “Fancy Man Blues” (HERE), The Paris Rehearsals (1975-1978) (HERE), Some Girls Are Bigger Than Others (1978 HERE), Live In England ’65 (HERE), Sticky Fingers (2011 Mix HERE), Montreux Rehearsals, May, 1972 (Video, HERE), MICK JAGGER & THE RED DEVILS The Famous Blues Session (HERE), JOHN PHILLIPS Pay Pack & Follow (w/ the 70s Stones, HERE) and BEN WATERS & THE STONES (with Bill Wyman in 2011) “Watching The River Flow” (HERE).