I do remember '72 and the first time I put that album on the turntable very cleary. Exacty the two friends I was with. True rock and roll soldiers, a little older than me and really good players too. Rocks Off followed by Rips...I just stopped right there and listened to the first two again. And then Rip a couple more times before we even moved on. It was pretty good. ;-)
I recall my first listen as well, vividly. My mum was a travel agent and had picked up a copy in the UK when over on an "educational". Returned it to Perth one day before it's Aussie release. I did NOT want to listen to it on my little Philips flip lid record player, mono, so I begged some friends of Mum and Dad, who had a large Grundig stereo, to let me play it first at their place. THEY loved Mantovani....
I dropped the needle onto Side one, track one, with Al and Anita in their kitchen, some 5 meters away, turned the volume knob up, a touch, a waited...
I was startled. THEY were horrified. I picked the needle up and used a small brush to clean the needle - THAT must be the fault! Dropped it again.
Nup - same result. It sounded, after Sticky Fingers, so cluttered, raw and ... hurried.
Al and Anita went out to their back patio. I played it on...and on...
...IT WAS an experience I will never forget. Music I felt, music that was primal and primitive, no sheen, no polish. Real.
I played it thru three times, side one to four. Extraordinary day.
With the result that I went out and bought my own 'good' stereo!