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Mounds View High School's student news site.

The Viewer

Mounds View High School's student news site.

The Viewer

Mounds View High School's student news site.

The Viewer

Mounds View High School's student news site.

The Viewer

A new era in the Rolling Stones: ‘Hackney Diamonds’

The Rolling Stones’ latest album, “Hackney Diamonds,” is their first album since “A Bigger Bang,” which was released in 2005.
The+Rolling+Stones+latest+album%2C+Hackney+Diamonds%2C+is+their+first+album+since+A+Bigger+Bang%2C+which+was+released+in+2005.%0A%0APHOTO+VIA+Universal+Music+Group+2023
The Rolling Stones’ latest album, “Hackney Diamonds,” is their first album since “A Bigger Bang,” which was released in 2005. PHOTO VIA Universal Music Group 2023

After the Rolling Stones lost their beloved drummer, Charlie Watts, in 2021, the future didn’t seem promising for the band. Before Watts’ passing, he decided to sit out on a tour and was replaced by his protege, Steve Jordan. After Watts’ death, the band picked up Jordan as their permanent drummer. 

As evident in Hackney Diamonds, released on Oct. 20, Jordan has poorly influenced the sound of the Rolling Stones, and it feels like drums no longer play an important and impressive role in their sound. Surprisingly, the album reached number three on the Billboard Charts, even with Jordan’s weak performance throughout.         

The album has a strong lead with the first song, “Angry,” which has a modern pop-rock feel. It’s a great song, stirring up strong expectations for the following songs. However, the second song, “Get Close,” has a “garage band” feel that doesn’t fit the Rolling Stones as well as other genres do. 

“Depending On You,” the third song, sounds much more depressing. Mick Jagger’s vocals hold a lot of great emotion, but the mood from the last two songs does not properly transition into this one. 

Next, “Bite My Head Off” has an unexpected sound to it. This song consists of very heavy chords with lots of short riffs. It’s also the only song where Jordan showcases his talent with fast, complicated drumming. 

Following several unimpressive tracks, “Dreamy Skies” is an enjoyable blues song. This song shows some variety in Jordan’s skills on his drums; however, the album as a whole still doesn’t show how the band adapts to Jordan. 

The tracklist continues with what sounds like filler. “Mess It Up,” the seventh song, almost sounds like a cover of “Angry.” 

My hope for a decent album returned when I heard  “Driving Me Too Hard.” It has an almost country sound, something that’s great to see from The Rolling Stones. 

One song I didn’t expect to hear on a Rolling Stones album is “Sweet Sounds Of Heaven” — an iconic, original gospel-sounding song featuring Lady Gaga on backup vocals. Yes, it’s not The Rolling Stones’ style, but they aced it with a beautiful melody and great harmonies from Lady Gaga and Mick Jagger. 

“The Rolling Stones Blues” concludes the album. This song has good changes, and it does a good job of diverging from past themes, and it stands out as its own song. The sound of the blues feels authentic and nostalgic for the band’s earlier work.  

This album is a masterpiece in some areas but falls short in others. The passing of Watts greatly impacted the band, and while Jordan will never be able to live up to Watts’s legacy, I hope Jordan will get more opportunities to showcase his skills in the future.

Final Verdict: 3/5

About the Contributor
Brayden Kopf, Staff Reporter
Brayden is a junior staff reporter, and this year is his first year on The Viewer.
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