It's Only Rock'n Roll
Nickelback (warmup) : 7:25pm - 8:15pm Rolling Stones : 8:50pm - 10:50pm
More general comments, - although the keyboards and horns (when on stage), were low enough in the mix, the guitars could have been up - seemed almost like the drums were deliberately up sometimes to carry things along. Keith was favouring his white hollowbody, which actually seemed a bit muddy to me. On the other hand, his Les Paul Junior sounded fantastic for Rambler.
Keith's slot began with him saying "Hello, ladies and Wellington - Hey, I just thought that up, that's pretty good" or something like it. Charlie had to replace a cymbal, and it was commented by Mick that he hardly hit them, let alone replaced them.
Mick was highly energetic, and sung brilliantly, whereas Keef and Ron tended to stck by Charlie, playing to him. No problems with Ron's solos tonight. I doubt they'll be back in town, so it's one for the history books.
There was also a bit more banter between Mick and the crowd, he mentioned that they hadn't come to Wellington since 1966 and that he didn't think he was even born then! There was the usual "anyone from place x" bit and when he said Auckland many people booed, I had to laugh at that, some New Zealanders hate Auckland so much they boo at the mere mention of it.
There was a priceless stuff-up during the first verse of tumbling dice, usually when such a thing happens, half the band will follow Mick and half will play it the right way-except this time no one followed Mick and he was left in the wilderness, again a funny moment, and a reminder that these rock-Gods are human after all.
A rousing cheer also followed when Keith was seen lighting a cigarette on the screen at the start of midnbight rambler, and whenever he threw 1 into the crowd. It was great to see Keith being Keith especially since smoking is banned in bars, clubs and a million other public places here.
This was probably the last time Kirk will get to see the Rolling Stones given Charlie's rumoured announcement that he won't do any more world tours, I'm just glad my last show was so good, the crowd was into it and the sound loud and clear, and the venue was better organised than in Auckland.
It was an awesome show, there is no comparison really with the Rolling Stones, how can you compare Springsteen or U2 to this? Simple: you can't, they are simply a gas gas gas...
There were a few different songs and it was great to hear shes so cold. Midnight Rambler was again the highlight for me and it was another outstanding version.
Another reason was I was able to sneak up to the B stage as well and get front for that. Was so cool to see them in that setting close up.
After giving away my pick at Auckland (another story) I got one of Ronnies at Wellington which was very very cool as well as the set list they threw at the end.
The sound was great, they were all having a great time as always and to me they tried to give it their all for the final date of this leg.
My next show is Stockholm which is only a few months away. I enjoyed this show more than the sydney Licks arena shows and the guitars were loud and Ronnie seemed to play more solos this tour than the last. that is what my hazy memory tells me anyway.
Great to hear gimme shelter which wasnt played in auckland.
Once again we are the luckiest fans, they still rock, they still love it and we get to enjoy seeing them again and again and again.
Highlights? A long to be remembered "Angie" a caressingly beautiful solo from Mick of a personal favourite of mine. Keith the same with 'This Place is Empty'. 'Sympathy for the Devil', fresh revamped and wild, wild wild. True of the whole set list really. All those songs we know and love, the sing alongs, being brought in by Mick as he worked the stadium round. Amazing , all of the line up getting a buzz. Nothing you can fault - just honest great performances all around.
Why are they the best loved band of generations? Because they deliver, over and over, every concert. Now that's professionalism and that's love. The " A Bigger Bang" world tour is a band at its most generous, giving heaps. Thanks guys.
A still Wellington night 20 degrees centigrade with a nice clear sky and moon. Song choice was excellent although I would have liked Get off my Cloud. Sound quality was excellent and stage lighting was simple but effective. Only low point was Keith Richard's solo. Sorry Keith, stick to your day job of playing brilliant guitar. Stones last toured in 1995 then 1973 before that. We are all looking forward to the Pensioner Tour 2010.
Make no mistake the Stones are built on the 3 pronged foundation of Mick, Keith & Charlie. The sound mix certainly illustrated this – drums especially to the front. Am I the only one that misses the virtuoso playing of Mick Taylor? Imagine what he could bring to the likes of Midnight Rambler (although this was probably still the highlight of the night fpr me), Gimme Shelter, Angie & YCAGWYW (check out European bootlegs from 1973 of the latter two.). In contrast Ronnie was either quiet or sloppy – still looks the part though.
Couldn’t argue with the song selection although there was a drop off for me after the opener JJF to what I would consider 2 minor numbers You Got Me Rocking & She’s So Cold. Angie bought the crowd back alive & they never lost it after that – even during Keith’s 2 numbers.
We can be left out of the loop in this part of the world for this type of show (witness the NZ absence from the Licks tour). A big thank you to whoever swung it to get these guys here. The Rolling Stones are an inspiration.”
So last night, 40 years on, was a joyous confirmation of all of that. Great rock and roll played really well. One or two gaffes - but who cares? The audience loved them and in return they left it all on the stage, nothing in the dressing rooms.
'Angie' brought tears but somehow without nostalgia. 'Rough Justice' brought ironic smiles but somehow without smug self-awareness.
'Gimme Shelter' and 'Midnight Rambler' alone were worth the price of entry. 'Paint it Black' had a frenzied kletzmer flavour and worked well. 'Sympathy', so much more than an anthem, seems to be a Song for the Ages. And so on. They are indeed Gods Grown Old and we will not see their like again.
Thankyou Mick, Charlie, Keith and Ron. It was great to see you again. Perfect.
It's only Rock n Roll, but I like it.
Everyone was playing incredibly tight and it was clear that they were all having fun. Mick ran around like he was still 20, Keith was effortlessly slick and Charlie and Ronnie joked around with everyone. You know they really have to be one of the greatest bands of all time when they can keep playing after 40 years and still have this much youthfull stage presence. They ripped through a great rendition of You Got Me Rocking and an even better version of Oh No, Not You Again, which happens to be one of my favourites off the new album. Angie was terrific live, Wild Horses would have been even better but you cant always get what you want. The definate highlights of the night came next with amazing renditions of Gimme Shelter and Midnight Rambler. Tumbling Dice was good but not quite as great live as the others had been. The horn section was very good though.
Keiths moment in the spotlight came next with a very tight version of This Place Is Empty which sounded much superior to the album version. Happy was good as well. Mick returned with Miss You, and the B-Stage extended even more awesomely then I had imagined. Rough Justice was good but it was Start Me Up of course that really kicked the show into high gear. Honky Tonk Woman was great but Symphony for the Devil was even better (just imagine 30000 fans all going "Woo Woo" along with Mick). Next Paint It Black, which I was amazed to here as they had not played it much this tour at all. Definatly one of my favourites of the night. An extended Brown Sugar was very impressive and the band left momentarily (and some fans tricked by Micks goodbye speech) only to appear with the last two songs of the night. They left clearly in high spirits, possibly as they now get a very well deserved five weeks off. I know I was a very satisfied fan, sure I would have liked to hear Get Off My Cloud or Rain Fall Down but apart from that tiny complaint everything else was amazing. If this is to be their last trip down here then thank god they went out in such amazing style.
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