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The Rolling Stones @ London Olympic Stadium 22.05.18

May 24, 2018

Review written for Record Collector magazine

View: Down the front in Pit A (Ronnie’s side)

A beautiful summer evening and a packed stadium augured well for the Stones return to their home town and they did not disappoint. Mick Jagger’s opening remarks emphasised how much London means to the band, even claiming that they played at nearby Dalston Baths (they did, in November 1963). The No Filter tour has featured a stripped back stage with walkways and massive video screens, allowing the band to project to the back of the 80,000 capacity venue. The sound was loud and clear, with a mix that emphasised the guitars. Street Fighting Man made for an emphatic set opener, highlighting the increasingly robust contributions of Keith Richards. Whilst co-guitarist Ronnie Wood still played the majority of the solos Keith was a more active partner in their guitar weaving and delivered a tough solo version of Before They Make Me Run.

Winner of the audience vote was Under My Thumb, delivered in a bouncy arrangement reminiscent of the 1966 original, albeit with some of the more sexist lyrics edited out. Adding more variety to their two hour, nineteen song set was the ballad Fool To Cry, not performed live since 1999. Jade, the daughter that Jagger sings about putting on his knee, is now 46 and she watched the song from behind Charlie Watts’ drum riser. Ride ‘Em On Down was the only blues number, this and a  raucous Midnight Rambler provided Jagger with a chance to show off his considerable harmonica prowess. There was a real visceral impact to Ronnie and Keith hitting the opening chords of Sympathy For The Devil in unison as the stage flooded with blood red light – a great mix of visuals and music. Some hardcore fans are claiming this as the best Stones London show since Wembley in 1982. And it’s only the second gig of the tour – in the words of Keith Richards they are just getting warmed up!

Chuck, Wendy, Simon, Keith, Mick

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From → Gigs, Music

One Comment
  1. Steven permalink

    Best show in London since 1982 : ah ah ah !

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