The Rolling Stones

Emotional Rescue

Song Review by

A lot of old-school Rolling Stones fans absolutely hate "Emotional Rescue." Even those who gave "Miss You" a pass because of the way it mixed a disco pulse with the Stones' own familiar sound blanched at the full-on Euro-disco coldness of this track, which reduces Keith Richards and Ron Wood to mere sidemen to Nicky Hopkins' electric piano, Bill Wyman's bass and synthesizer, and Charlie Watts' typically precise drums. On top of this, Mick Jagger sings in an arch, fey falsetto that deliberately undercuts any sense of emotion in the lyrics. However, the whole thing works, largely due to the in-the-pocket groove that Wyman and Watts build, which is more Booker T. & the MG's than Giorgio Moroder, connecting the song to the Stones' R&B roots. That is, it works until the last two and a half minutes or so, when Jagger drops the falsetto and goes into an extemporized (at least, one hopes he didn't actually take the time to write all this down) rap that he delivers in a bizarrely draggy, over-enunciated drawl. That part of the song, for sure, is awful. The rest of it is surprisingly good.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Emotional Rescue 1980 Universal 5:39
Rewind (1971-1984) 1984 Columbia / Rolling Stones Records 5:40
Jump Back: The Best of the Rolling Stones (1971-1993) 1993 Virgin 5:40
Forty Licks 2002 ABKCO Records 3:42
LP Sleeve Box Set 2005 Toshiba EMI
The Singles: 1971-2006 2011 Polydor 5:41
GRRR! 2012 ABKCO Records 3:43
Honk 2019 Interscope 3:42
Some Girls/Emotional Rescue Rolling Stones Records
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