8 April 2010, gsparaco @ 5:15 am
Time Trip 1966-1974 (Dog N Cat DAC-063)
This four disc Time Trip on the Dog N Cat label collects and presents the past Scorpio releases in one convienient package. For the most part the sound quality and content is the same, but there are some minor variations on the latter discs of the set. Talking about Stones outtakes is tricky because there are a plethora of releases, both on vinyl and compact disc, that listing and discussing them all will take up a lot of time. Rather, it is important to point out the effect the Time Trip series on Scorpio had. Must like the release of The Beatles’ Ultra Rare Tracks in the late eighties, this series displayed the potiential of the cd medium with its pristine quality outtake material.
Some of these tracks have been floating around since the seventies, but it was the uncirculated sessions that causes more than one collector to further investigate the unreleased material by the Rolling Stones. The Scorpio titles have been out for a while and are hard to come by Dog N Cat provide a service by making these excellent titles available again for new collectors (and yes, there are new Stones collectors just joining the band wagon. Seasoned collectors might not have much use for this set, but for newer ones this is a welcome release).
Much of this material was re-released on The Black Box (Yellow Dog YD 046, YD 047, YD 048, YD 2000), but again that box set was a limited edition set and is hard to find today. The four discs cover a span of eight years with the earliest tracks dating from 1966 and the latest dating from 1974, so it coves the latter days of the Brian Jones era and the entire time with Mick Taylor in the band. This basically covers what many collectors argue to be the most creative and influential period in the long history of the Rolling Stones and is therefore the most interesting. This review will not discuss and compare every track in this set (believe it or not I do have a life), but will point out some of the more interesting tracks found in the set.
Time Trip Vol. 1: Gimme Shelter (Olympic Sound Studios, London – March 15th, 1969), You Got The Silver (Olympic Sound Studios, London – February 17th, 1969), Sister Morphine (Olympic Sound Studios, London – March 22nd – 31st, 1969), Loving Cup (Olympic Sound Studios, London – June 10th – July 2nd, 1969), You Gotta Move (Olympic Sound Studios, London – December 9th & 10th, 1969), Brown Sugar (Muscle Shoals Studios, Alabama - December 4th, 1969), Shake Your Hips (Rialto Cinema Theatre, Montreux, Switzerland – May 17th – 21st,1972), Tumbling Dice (Rialto Cinema Theatre, Montreux, Switzerland, May 17-21, 1972), Bluesberry Jam (Rialto Cinema Theatre, Montreux, Switzerland, May 17-21, 1972), Ventilator Blues (Sumet-Burnet Recording Studio, Dallas, Texas, June 23, 1972), Bitch (Mobile Recording Unit, Newbury, March 1970), Brown Sugar (Olympic Sound Studios, London & Mobile Recording Unit, Newbury, May 9 – August 1970), Wild Horses (Olympic Sound Studios, London & Mobile Recording Unit, Newbury, March-May 1970), Angie (Dynamic Sound Studios, Kingston, Jamaica, November 25-30 & December 6-21, 1972), Shine A Light (Olympic Sound Studios, London, July 23, 1970)
Time Trip Vol. 1 opens with “Gimme Shelter,” recorded in Olympic Studio on March 15, 1969. this version features Keith on vocals, Nicky Hopkins on piano and Jimmy Miller on percussion. “You Got The Silver” has Hopkins again on piano and organ. “Sister Morphine” comes from the March 1969 sesion featuring Ry Cooder on slide guitar.
“Loving Cup,” recorded right before their free concert in Hyde Park, is an early version with Mick Jagger repeating the end of lines one and two (“come on up” / “face full of mud”), has no female back-up vocals and no brass. “You Gotta Move” from the Muscle Shoals Sound Studios after their North American tour. This is a different mix of the track as it appears on Sticky Fingers.
“Brown Sugar” on Sticky Fingers was recorded in an all night session between December 3 to December 4, 1969 in Muscle Shoals Studios in Florence, Alabama and the final mix was completed on April 24, 1970 at Olympic Studio in London. The first “Brown Sugar” on disc one is the second take with Ian Stewart on piano, no saxophone, and is the so-called “Decca Acetate.”
Three tracks, “Shake Your Hips,” “Tumbling Dice,” and “Bluesberry Jam” date from the 1972 US tour rehearsals at the Rialto Cinema Theatre in Montreux, Switzerland and this comes from the television broadcast (“Top Of The Pops” on May 21, 1972 and “Old Grey Whistle Test” on May 27, 1972).
“Ventilator Blues” dates from the June 23, 1972 mid-tour rehearsals where the band were preparing for the filming of the next four shows in Dallas and Houston. This is a song that has only been performed in Vancouver on that tour and didn’t make it into the Texas shows. The artwork dates “Bitch” from March, 1970 but that is incorrect. The song was recorded after the European tour in October, 1970 at Stargroves and mixed later at Olympic Studio. The final track is an early version of “Shine A Light” with Billy Preston on piano and organ.
Time Trip Vol. 2: Bitch (Mobile Recording Unit, Newbury, March 1970), Brown Sugar (Olympic Sound Studios, London & Mobile Recording Unit, Newbury,May 9- August 1970), Wild Horses (Muscle Shoals Studios, Alabama, December 4, 1969), Dead Flowers (Olympic Sound Studios, London, December 9 & 10, 1969), Sway (Mobile Recording Unit, Newbury & Olympic Sound Studios, London, March- May 1970), Winter (Dynamic Sound Studios, Kingston, Jamaica, November 25-30 & December 6-21, 1972), Sister Morphine (Olympic Sound Studios, London,March 22-31, 1969), Tumbling Dice (Rialto Cinema Theatre, Montreux, Switzerland, May17-21, 1972), Bluesberry Jam (Rialto Cinema Theatre, Montreux, Switzerland, May 17 – 21, 1972), Shake Your Hips (Olympic Sound Studios, London, July 27, 1970), Stop Breaking Down (Olympic Sound Studios, London, June 16, 1970), Loving Cup (Rialto Cinema Theatre, Montreux, Switzerland, May 17-21, 1972), John’s Jam (Rialto Cinema Theatre, Montreux, Switzerland, May 17-21, 1972), Brown Sugar (Olympic Sound Studios, London & Mobile Recording Unit, Newbury, May 9-August, 1970), It’s Only Rock N Roll (Mobile Recording Unit, Newbury, April 10-15, 1974), Honky Tonk Women (UK-BBC-TV,”Top Of ThePops”, London, July 3, 1969)
Time Trip Vol. 2 begins with a six minute long track of “Bitch.” It is a frustrating listen since the tape keeps being stopped and rewound. The following two tracks, “Brown Sugar” and “Wild Horses,” are alternate mixes of the Sticky Fingers tracks with only slight, minor variations in the mix.
“Wild Horses,” for example, is missing the electric guitar ornament and is purely acoustic.
“Dead Flowers” is the second cut from the December, 1969 sessions with Ian Stewart on the piano and with “Little Susie” being changed to “Little Lucy” in the latter half of the song. (Mick apparently forgot who he was singing about!) The liner notes claim “Sway” was recorded in the spring, 1970 sessions but that is incorrect. Like “Bitch,” it dates from soon after the European tour that year in the October 17 to October 31 sessions at Stargroves and the version included on volume two lacks the string arrangement on the polished cut.
“Winter” dates from the late 1972 Kingston, Jamaica sessions for Goats Head Soup. This track is sourced from an acetate and has four seconds of backwards tape at the beginning. The following track “Sister Morphine” sounds identical to the finished version. “
Tumbling Dice,” “Bluesberry Jam,” “Loving Cup” and “John’s Jam” come from the same Montreux rehearsals found on the first disc and the first two tracks are identical. This is obviously redundant and Dog N Cat should have cut those two tracks and replaced them with something else more interesting. In the middle of the Montreux tracks is an early long version of “Shake Your Hips.” This dates from the summer 1970 sessions at Olympic Studio and four minutes and twenty-one seconds long, almost a third longer than the final version on Exile On Main Street.
“It’s Only Rock And Roll,” is a slightly different mix than the final version but again, nothing revealing. Neither is the final track, a taping of “Honky Tonk Women” on July 3, 1969 for “Top Of The Pops.” This is the first of two taping of live vocals over the backing track.
Time Trip Vol. 3: Mother’s Little Helper (RCA Studios, Los Angeles, CA, December 3 – 8, 1965), Family (Olympic Sound Studios, London, May 13 – 23, 1968), Blood Red Wine (Olympic Sound Studios, London, May 13 – 23, 1968), And I Was A Country Boy (Olympic Sound Studios, London, March 23, 1969), I’m Going Down (Elektra & Sunset Sound Studios, Los Angeles, October 17 – November 2, 1969), Down Town Suzie (Olympic Sound Studios, London, May 13 – 23, 1968), Give Me A Hamburger (Olympic Sound Studios, London, May 13 – 23, 1968), Still A Fool (Olympic Sound Studios, London, May 13 – 23, 1968), No Expectations (Live in London, Hyde Park, July 5, 1969), Prodigal Son (Live in Oakland, CA, Coliseum, November 9, 1969, 2nd show), Highway Child (Redlands, Sussex, February – March, 1968), Street Fighting Man (Olympic Sound Studios, London, May 13 – 21 , 1968), All Down The Line (Sunset Sound Studios, Los Angeles, CA, December 4 – 19, 1971 ), Bye Bye Johnny (Live in Charlotte, North Carolina, Coliseum, July 6, 1972), Rip This Joint (Live in Charlotte, North Carolina, Coliseum, July 6, 1972), Sweet Virgina (Olympic Sound Studios, London, June 30 & July 20, 1970), I Ain’t Signifying (Mobile Recording Unit , Nelcote , Villefranche, France, September & October 15 – November 23 1971), I Don’t Care (Sunset Sound Studios, Los Angeles, CA, March 28, 1972)
Time Trip Vol. 3 has the same tracklisting as the Scorpio release (Scorpio 15-172-01) in the same sound quality. The first track is the first take of the instrumental track for “Mother’s Little Helper” recorded at the RCA studios in Los Angeles in December, 1965 in excellent quality. Also in excellent quality is the following track “Family.” This is an early “slurred” version which features an electric guitar in the beginning in contrast to later takes which began with acoustic guitar.
“Blood Red Wine” (aka “Red Blood Wine,” “Blood Red & Wine,” and “Bloodred Wine”) is a well known, never released Beggar’s Banquet outtake recorded early in 1968. this unreleased, potential classic first surfaced in the late seventies on the Trident Mixes LP and this version, straight from Scorpio, is likewise copied from a clean vinyl copy.
“And I Was A Country Boy” is from the March, 1969 sessions and is a basic instrumental version of the song with Nicky Hopkins on the piano. An upgrade of this track surfaced in RSVP with improved sound quality and no bleeding of the instruments. Scorpio and Dog N Cat credit “I’m Going Down” to Elektra & Sunset Studios in Los Angeles during the pre tour sessions in 1969. The song was first written early that year and was mixed, but what is present on this release is the recording done on July 14th -15, 1970 at Olympic Studio with Bobby Keys on sax, Rocky Dijon on percussion, Stephen Stills on guitar, and Bill Plummer on upright bass and released in 1975 on Metamorphosis.
“Down Town Suzie” dates from Olympic Studio, London on April 23, 1969, and is sung as “Down Town Lucy.” “Still A Fool” is the full ten minute version of the Muddy Waters track. Some date this session from the May, 1968 and other from the June, 1968 sessions at Olympic Studio, this track also circulates under the title “Two Train Blues.”
Nicky Hopkins plays piano, Keith Richards plays the bass and Jagger’s vocals are treated to make him sound like the blues singer. This unreleased Muddy Waters cover is an inspiring, creative jam is a true gem and is a shame it has never been given official release.
“No Expectations” comes from the July 5 Hyde Park television broadcast and sounds distorted, and “Prodigal Son” comes from the Bill Graham soundboard of the second Oakland show on November 9, 1969. The other live tracks, “Bye Bye Johnny” and “Rip This Joint,” come the July 6, 1972 concert in Charlotte on what has been described as the best sounding audience recording from The Stones’ 1972 tour. The disc ends with two interesting rarities.
“I Ain’t Signifying” (aka “I Ain’t Lying,” “I Ain’t Signifying,” “I’ve Been Here Before,” and “Mean Women Blues”) is a rare Exiles On Main Street outtake that was discarded by Jagger never to appear. It is a simple twelve-bar blues over which Taylor improvises various riffs while Jagger delivers an intense vocal performance over the piano. Jimmy Miller joins them on percussion. The track is in very good quality with a minimum of tape hiss and runs for three minutes and forty six seconds before it abruptly ends. All that is present is the first verse, the chorus, an excellent Taylor guitar solo and the chorus a second time and it has the potential to be another classic from the classic LP.
The final track is the almost three minutes long “I Don’t Care.” This dates from March 28, 1972 at Sunset Sound Studios in Los Angeles. It is a poor to fair sounding demo featuring just Mick at the piano and singing.
Time Trip Vol. 4: Dear Doctor (Olympic Sound Studios, London, May 13 – 21, 1968), No Expectations (Olympic Sound Studios, London, May 13 – 21, 1968), Sister Morphine (OIympic Sound Studios, London, March 22 – 31, 1969), You Go The Silver (Olympic Sound Studios, London, February 17, 1969), Gimme Shelter (Olympic Sound Studios, London, March 15, 1969), You Can’t Always Get What You Want (Olympic Sound Studios, London, March 15, 1969), Jumping Jack Flash (Olympic Sound Studios, London, April 20, 1968), Child Of The Moon (Olympic Sound Studios, London March 17 – 29, 1968), Citadel (Olympic Sound Studios, London, June 9, 1967), Citadel (Olympic Sound Studios, London, June 9, 1967), Citadel (Olympic Sound Studios, London, June 9, 1967), Citadel (Olympic Sound Studios, London, June 9, 1967), Citadel (Olympic Sound Studios, London, June 9, 1967), In Another Land (Olympic Sound Studios, London, February 14 – 22 & July 13, 1967), We Love You (Olympic Sound Studios, London, June 12 – 13, 1967), Dandelion (Olympic Sound Studios, London, November 8 – 26, 1967), 19th Nervous Breakdown (RCA Studios, Los Angeles, CA, December 3 – 8, 1965), Yesterday’s Papers (RCA Studios, Los Angeles, CA, August 3 – 11 , 1966), Get Yourself Together (RCA Studios, Los Angeles, CA, August 3 – 11 , 1966), Connection (UK-ATV, “Sunday Night At The London Palladium”, January 22, 1967), It’s All Over Now (UK-ATV,”Sunday Night At The London Palladium”, January 22, 1967), Carol (Live in New York, Madison Square Garden, November 28, 1969, 1st show)
The final disc contains Scorpio’s Time Trip Vol. 4 with the additional track “Get Yourself Together” that was not on the original release. The first two tracks on this disc come from the spring, 1968 Begger’s Banquet sessions in excellent quality.
“Dear Doctor” is different than the released version and called take one by the engineer at the beginning of the track. This features Hopkins on piano, Dave Mason on guitar, no backing vocals and a different take of the lead vocals.
“No Expectations,” in the words of one collector, “opens with studio banter between Mick and Keith concerning Stu’s organ. As compared to the Beggar’s Banquet version, there is audibly more hiss, while the slide checks in lower in the mix. Keith’s acoustic rhythm, on the other hand, has much greater definition. Mick’s vocal is more stark and striking than Beggar’s Banquet. During the final instrumentation passage, Jagger hums along very prominently, while Stu’s organ competes for space with Nicky Hopkins’ piano. Very nice. IMHO, a better overall listening experience than Beggar’s Banquet’s version.”
“Sister Morphine” is the finished track but with a different mix of he piano. “Get Yourself Together” is a song that was not included on the original Scorpio release and is a rare variation on this set. This demo was only released on Who The Hate Is Brian Jones on Shaved Disc and is a welcome addition. The disc ends with various live appearances including “Carol,” which is the same version as on the officially released LP Get Your Ya Yas Out, but with a different mix. This is packaged in a fatboy jewel case and the sound quality on the songs varies as can be expected, but in general is all very good. The track listing information is printed on the inserts with a photo of the Mick Taylor era band on front and Brian Jones era on the back. There isn’t anything really gained with this release, but is a nice supplemental edition of the Scorpios which was released soon after Scorpio released Time Trip Vol. 5.If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)