Right after recordings for the Ed Sullivan TV show, the Rolling Stones flew to Australia and commenced an Australia/New Zealand tour (February 18 - March 2, 1966). The return trip went via Fiji and then back to Los Angeles. This gave the band the opportunity to once again enter RCA Studios, Hollywood (March 6-8) to record some ten new songs for their upcoming fourth studio album, Aftermath. As usual, Dave Hassinger and Jack Nitzsche assisted with production.
Nitzsche contributes piano on "Out Of Time", supporting Ian Stewart, who is on organ. Brian Jones was featured on yet another newly acquired instrument, the marimba, which was first played by Stu on a cover of Sam Cooke's "Good Times". The African instrument, translated as 'the voice of wood' is played like a xylophone. Its resonance is unique due to the wooden keys mounted above resonators.
The Stones' association with the female 'put down' theme is much debated. It may have been derived from insecurity or simply the boredom of impersonal hotel groupies, who knows? At least "Under My Thumb", another lyrically revelistic and chauvinistic song, is inspired by late-night groupie encounters. The song has a strong rhythmic base, with almost African connotations. This primeval feel is enhanced by the marimba, which is again played by Brian Jones.
It provides the song's unique riff against Bill Wyman's tight bass sound. Keith Richards plucks the guitar on the rhythm breaks and there is a de-tuned groan chorus riff, in the style of the previous year's Spencer Davis Group's "Keep On Runnin'". The song speeds up at the end as Mick Jagger jives 'take it easy babe', with Ian Stewart keeping pace on piano.
Adapted from the following source: Martin Elliott, The Rolling Stones. Complete Recording Sessions 1962-2002, Cherry Red Books, 2002.