THE ROLLING STONES have released the second single, “Sweet Sounds Of Heaven”, from their upcoming album “Hackney Diamonds”, due on October 20
The track features a bravura vocal performance by Lady Gaga, alongside Stevie Wonder on Fender Rhodes, Moog and piano.
A gospel-infused STONES epic in the lineage of “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” and “Shine A Light”, “Sweet Sounds Of Heaven” came about in a spontaneous fashion. THE ROLLING STONES frontman Mick Jagger was at his home in London one sunny afternoon, the leaves were rustling as the wind blew through the trees around outside, and he started playing a chord pattern of C, F and B Flat on his piano.
The track was recorded at Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles; Metropolis Studios, London; Sanctuary Studios, Nassau, Bahamas and written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. During sessions in Los Angeles, THE ROLLING STONES invited Stevie Wonder and Lady Gaga to work on “Heaven”.
Both Lady Gaga and Stevie Wonder have previously performed with THE ROLLING STONES. Lady Gaga joined THE STONES onstage as part of the “50 & Counting” tour in 2012. Their performance of “Gimme Shelter” was eventually released on “GRRR Live” album. Stevie Wonder toured with THE STONES on their American tour in 1972 regularly performing a medley of “Satisfaction” and “Uptight (Everything’s Alright)” together.
“Hackney Diamonds” album opener, the recently released single “Angry”, is followed by a further 11 tracks. Late drummer Charlie Watts features on two tracks, “Mess It Up” and “Live By The Sword”. “Live By The Sword” additionally features bass from former STONES bassist Bill Wyman. “Bite My Head Off” has bass from Paul McCartney, and “Get Close” and “Live By The Sword” feature piano from Elton John.
THE ROLLING STONES “Hackney Diamonds” track listing:
02. Get Close
03. Depending On You
04. Bite My Head Off
05. Whole Wide World
06. Dreamy Skies
07. Mess It Up
08. Live By The Sword
09. Driving Me Too Hard
10. Tell Me Straight
11. Sweet Sounds Of Heaven
12. Rolling Stone Blues
The 12-track album, was recorded in various locations around the world, including Henson Recording Studios, Los Angeles; Metropolis Studios, London; Sanctuary Studios, Nassau, Bahamas; Electric Lady Studios, New York; and The Hit Factory/Germano Studios, also in New York.
Earlier this month, THE STONES launched the album at a globally livestreamed event from Hackney Empire in East London. The livestream was followed by the premiere of the video for “Angry” starring Emmy-nominated actress Sydney Sweeney (“The White Lotus”, “Euphoria”, “The Handmaid’s Tale”),which to date has had over 17 million views.
“Hackney Diamonds” is THE STONES‘ first studio set of new material since 2005’s “A Bigger Bang”. Since then, THE STONES have continued to smash box office records for fun on a series of global sellout tours and released 2016’s Grammy Award-winning “Blue & Lonesome”, which featured their brilliant versions of many of the blues tracks that helped shape their sound, and topped album charts around the world. Last year, they thrilled European audiences totaling nearly a quarter of a million on the anniversary “Sixty” tour.
“Hackney Diamonds” marks THE ROLLING STONES‘ first collaboration with New York-born producer and musician Andrew Watt, who was named “Producer Of The Year” at the 2021 Grammy Awards and has worked with Post Malone, Iggy Pop and Elton John.