The Rolling Stones

No Stone Unturned

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The best of the various Rolling Stones collections issued by British Decca during the early '70s, No Stone Unturned is a marvelous gathering of (primarily) non-album B-sides and EP cuts that would not be entirely superseded until the appearance of the three-CD Singles Collection: The London Years singles collection almost a decade and a half later. Indeed, the only serious criticism of the set should be its brevity -- 12 songs merely scraped the surface of the Stones' unavailable catalog, and the presence of two songs that had only ever been issued in the U.S. ("Sad Day" and "Congratulations") simply rubbed salt into the British collectors' wounds. In the years before ABKCO consolidated the Stones' U.K. and U.S. catalogs, those old American B-sides and album-fillers were impossible to find in Britain, and their piecemeal distribution over sundry compilations was seen as nothing short of opportunistic gouging. That said, No Stone Unturned certainly cherry-picks the best of the Stones' period rarities, from the post-psychedelia of "Child of the Moon," all the way back to the primeval beat-boomery of the instrumental "Stoned" and their grinding take on "Money" -- the song that illustrated for early-'60s observers just how far removed from Beatle-dom the Stones' early influences really were. When the Fab Four sang the same song, after all, they sounded like they were willing to go out and work for their pay. The Stones sounded just as happy to live off somebody else's.

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