Song of the Week: The Rolling Stones’ “Sweet Sounds of Heaven” Is an Instant Classic

The post Song of the Week: The Rolling Stones’ “Sweet Sounds of Heaven” Is an Instant Classic appeared first on Consequence.

Song of the Week delves into the fresh songs we just can’t get out of our heads. Find these tracks and more on our Spotify Top Songs playlist, and for our favorite new songs from emerging artists, check out our Spotify New Sounds playlist. This week, The Rolling Stones are back with their second single from the upcoming Hackney Diamonds, “Sweet Sounds of Heaven.”

On paper, a seven-and-a-half-minute jam from a legacy rock band whose most celebrated material lies decades behind them sounds like a punishment. And yet, this new The Rolling Stones song, “Sweet Sounds of Heaven,” actually… rocks? And not just because of the guests? What year is it!?

An anthemic, surprisingly emotional cut from their upcoming album Hackney Diamonds, “Sweet Sounds of Heaven” sounds more impassioned, more inspired, and (by some miracle) more youthful than a Rolling Stones song in 2023 has any right to be. From the guitar licks to Mick Jagger’s roaring lead vocals, the performances brim with life.

Appearances from Stevie Wonder and Lady Gaga make the tune all the better. The former holds down a soulful piano melody, while the latter proves that she’s still one of the most impressive voices in contemporary pop. The interplay between Gaga and Jagger’s voice, in particular, makes the extended track feel like it breezes by in an instant.

With a false ending and some light studio chatter thrown in for good measure, “Sweet Sounds of Heaven” is easily one of the best late-stage songs The Stones have to offer. If the rest of Hackney Diamonds follows suit, rock fans of all ages will be in for quite the treat.

Jonah Krueger
Editorial Coordinator

Honorable Mentions


There’s something about this track from Saya Gray that leaves the listener just a bit on edge, and that’s probably by design.  The Japanese-Canadian producer is aware of the sonic intimacy she’s able to cultivate in her music. It’s impossible to know where this track is going to go next, one minute untethered, the other conversational, but every moment evocative. — Mary Siroky

julie – “catalogue”

Trio julie is back with their first single of 2023, “catalogue,” continuing to build momentum and energy ahead of a fully sold-out run of tour dates. The shoegaze band, which originated in Orange County, is moving full steam ahead with this one, a frenetic, claustrophobic track that only builds anticipation for a live show format. The instrumental outro alone, when the band just lets loose, is enough to get someone excited for how “catalogue” will sound in a performance setting. — M. Siroky

alexalone – “All I Need”

Now two years removed from their impressive debut ALEXALONEWORLD, Austin-based musician Alex Peterson is back with the dense, dynamic, and enthralling sophomore effort of their project alexalone, ALEXALONE TECHNICAL RESEARCH. Released in full today (September 29th), the project kicks off with the seven-minute opener “ALL I NEED,” a patient but explosive sonic journey that sets an experimental foundation upon which the following four tracks go on to further explore. Fusing slowcore signifiers with a Slint-esque approach to structure, it’s a perfect tone-setter for another stellar record from an ever-evolving indie act. — J. Krueger

Anxious – “Down, Down”

Ever since the release of their 2022 debut, Little Green House, Anxious has been on a hot streak of non-album singles, each one catchier than the last. “Down, Down,” the latest in the band’s run of absolute bangers, does nothing but bring Anxious’ already impressive average even higher. Boasting blood-pumping performances, surprisingly sweet melodies, and an earworm of a hook, “Down, Down” proves Anxious hasn’t yet lost their magic touch for penning incredibly engaging works of modern punk — and by all accounts, they won’t be losing it anytime soon. — J. Krueger

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Song of the Week: The Rolling Stones’ “Sweet Sounds of Heaven” Is an Instant Classic
Jonah Krueger

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