The Rolling Stones' 'Hitleresque' recordings

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 7 May 2010

The Rolling Stones' Keith Richards

Keith Richards described sessions for The Rolling Stones' 'Exile On Main Street' album held at the Nellcote mansion in France as ''Hitleresque''

Keith Richards described sessions for The Rolling Stones' 'Exile On Main Street' album as "Hitleresque".

The band's 1972 double album was recorded the previous summer at the rented Nellcote mansion in the south of France - a residence rumoured to have been a base of Nazi operation in World War II - and Keith recalled sessions for it being held in the basement, and being a trying time for the band.

He explained to radio station Xfm: "It was hard work down there. It was kind of Hitleresque

"It was a bit like stoking the boilers. It was the height of the summer in the south of France and it did get pretty sticky down there, it had a dust floor."

Singer Mick Jagger was similarly damming of recording conditions describing the making of the album as "very difficult".

He said: "Things were getting done but they were very disorganised. We should have recorded in the drawing room, which is what we did at my house in England before, but we didn't.

"It was very hard to record there. We did get stuff done, but it was pretty chaotic."

Drummer Charlie Watts - who, at the time, completed the group with bassist Bill Wyman - also takes a dim view of the recordings - but rather than the recording environment, blames the chaos of the band's life.

He added: "It was very druggy so it was totally unstructured. We went on Keith time. When he woke up we'd go and record something, and if he was awake for 15 hours, we'd play for 15 hours."

'Exile On Main Street' is re-released in a remixed format on May 17.

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