7inch Sunday: Mick Jagger – Visions of Paradise

7inch Sunday
is a segment devoted entirely to 7” vinyl and the all-encompassing experience surrounding it. Although most publications cover major releases, the vinyl single is often overlooked and given nothing more than a half-hearted nod of acknowledgement. This weekly feature is a hub for 7” reviews, exploring the B-sides and rarities of artists that may often go unnoticed.

Each Sunday I will review 7” vinyl from artists who venture this extra mile to hold their singles high above the sea of digital releases. I hope to embody the spirit of vinyl while sharing some fantastic music with you, the reader. Let’s get started.

When Mick Jagger was creating the demos for what would be 2001’s Goddess in the Doorway, he did not hesitate to bring in a number of heavy-hitting personal contacts to help out. Ranging from featured performances by Bono and Kenny Aronoff (John Mellencamp, Chickenfoot) to collaborations with Lenny Kravitz and Rob Thomas, the record successfully kept Jagger in the limelight during a brief break with The Stones. Serving as spectacular promo for the album, a limited-edition run of picture discs were released for the single “Visions of Paradise” and a remix of “God Gave Me Everything.” I was lucky enough to snag one of these beauties recently while visiting Chad’s Records in Chattanooga, TN.

The cover of the vinyl is a classic shot of Jagger against hectic, scrawled lettering that radiates tribal undertones… it also labels the sleeveless release. Song credits and promo information (date of album release, Virgin Records name-drop, etc.) are littered across the back. Metadata aside, it’s a beautiful vinyl with equally impressive tracks within the grooves.

“Visions of Paradise,” the A-side of the single, is the first track of Goddess in the Doorway and a collaborative effort between Jagger, Rob Thomas and Stones musical director Matt Clifford. A heartfelt track with early 2000s pop sensibilities, Jagger punches through the interrogation of a lover whose promise for a brighter future is marred by present conflict. Light piano and drums prelude a sweeping string section that furthers the tracks poignancy, allowing Jagger to show a softer side than his usual Stones sass.

The B-side, “God Gave Me Everything,” showcases the Jagger we all know and love and features Kravitz on guitar. For this record, however, the song has been remixed by none other than Dan the Automator (Gorillaz, Deltron 3030, etc.). Known for his extensive production work, Dan takes this rock tune and gives it a slight yet significant twist. Percussion similar to the latin flair of “Sympathy for the Devil” controls the verses alongside Jagger’s reverb-heavy vocals and DJ scratches. This same power continues throughout the entire track and is only stopped by a lengthy fade.

Check back next week for The Tontons’ Bones.

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