With BLACK AND BLUE the Rolling Stones geared up for another installment of records as the world's best-loved rock and roll band. Aided by Ronnie Wood's enrollment as foil to Keith's unmistakable guitar, BLACK AND BLUE assured, to those who dared doubt, a new era had begun. Flavoring their existing rhythm-and-blues format with Caribbean beats and cocktail-swilling pianos, BLACK AND BLUE's strongest moments are in the band's obvious enjoyment. Catering to Mick's lounge-act instincts, "Melody" seems the obvious precursor to "Miss You", allowing Billy Preston's piano and vocal harmony to carry the Stones with a more stylized, less formulaic batch of songs. BLACK AND BLUE was the resting period which allowed the band to release a followup album with the punch of SOME GIRLS. The casualness of the album's material served as perfect contrast to the Motown-esque stylings of IT'S ONLY ROCK 'N ROLL and allowed the band to save their energy for another decade of releases.