Sound — 10
One of the best sounding albums from the Virgin Records Stones era. This album was recorded on standard studio equipment in 1978. The band had become the rock & roll band and was still on top by the time this album was released. The Rolling Stones have transgressed through four decades of musical change and this was one of them. Punk and disco music had become highly popular by the end of the '70s and The Rolling Stones had to change their sound but keep the same conviction that earlier records made them famous for. The Rolling Stones had been knocked to the side by the likes of The Clash and the Bee Gees during this period. The Glimmer Twins (Mick Jagger/Keith Richards) produced a thumping album full of guitar oriented rock with a back beat that would reflect the disco scene. The rockers on this album are a lot more aggressive than many of their earlier rock staple songs. They did a good job in putting on a "punk rock" mask for this album because you can clearly hear the mischievous influence.
Lyrics — 10
Contraire to popular belief, this is in fact a musically versatile album. Many people are scared away by the disco reputation this album has garnered. Don't be that way. There is really only one song that is disco-esque on the whole album, "Miss You." The band really experiments with a few genres of contemporary music on this album. There most honest effort would be the country-rock song "Far Away Eyes" which is convincingly great. Mick Jagger comments on the song: "I love country music, but I find it very hard to take it seriously. I also think a lot of country music is sung with the tongue in cheek, so I do it tongue in cheek. The harmonic thing is very different from the blues. It doesn't bend notes in the same way, so I suppose it's very English, really. Even though it's been very Americanized, it feels very close to me, to my roots, so to speak." Many people may be scared away from The Rolling Stones and them making a punk song don't be. The best example off this album is "Respectable" which has a very fast paced strumming and drumming formula. Keith Richards sounds refreshed and excited to be out of jail along with Ron Wood and Bill Wyman who both seemed ready to take on this challenge of an album. The shinning lyrical moment on the album comes from "Beast of Burden" the blues lick inspired, backseat love song that is about a guy who understands he may not be the best of the best but he makes it clear to the female subject that he'll "never be her beast of burden". An honest, classic rock song. Mick Jagger didn't fully start incorporating falsetto tones into his singing until the next album of left over material "Emotional Rescue" so for critics of his various singing methods, don't be scared off. None of that here.
Overall Impression — 10
As mentioned earlier, there was clearly a punk, country and disco influence on this album. Maybe not as punk as the Sex Pistols, not as country as Hank Williams or as disco as Donna Summer, but a little bit like each genre with a Rolling Stones twang. They're still the Rolling Stones on this album. Some Girls may not have had that young backstreet aggression of their '60s efforts, or the drunk and drugged rock of the their earlier '70s but they deliver a sleazy, trashy, raucous, exciting, sexy, reckless and redeeming record.