It's Only Rock'n Roll
The Rolling Stones live at Twickenham Stadium, London UK, Tuesday June 19, 2018 - Photo by Bjornulf Vik
Show start : 8:26pm Show end : 10:30pm
Pre-show info and live comments:
Twickenham London UK 19-June-2018 Rolling Stones No Filter live updates
The playing was great throughout, often seemingly on the edge of chaos, but rescued just in time by Charlie or Ronnie, the Stones as we have always loved them. I thought Midnight Rambler was a particular highlight, as others have reported, although I'd have liked a bit more harmonica, and I guess we have become accustomed to Start Me Up being mangled at the start. It's a shame though, because it's a favourite of many of us, and Ronnie especially shines on it.
I won't mention getting home - let's just say we'll remember the music long after the journey has faded from the memory. And what wonderful memories - thank you Rolling Stones!
However, an unpleasant experience of having a person cut right in before show start, made me lose my temper. It was a repeat of ‘No Filter Paris 2’ in the Pit (AND in lining up before both shows as well) I do not understand how a person can enter the Pit right before the RS come on stage, push their way through, and literally put themselves in front of others (me) after I and others have been standing for hours, securing our positions. It would never occur to me to be this self centered. I am unable to ‘let it go’ Perhaps because I waited 35 years for my position, paid money I do not have in excess, and therefore speak up. Nearly a brawl. It ruins my mood. I was carrying a somber attitude at show start. Furthermore, I was growing concerned that the plastic type tarp over the band (to keep the sound from escaping into the air?) did not allow me to see the 2 middle screens well, and the 2 outer screens off at angles. Plus, Mick was addressing the crowds off to the sides, I want to see Mick!
It wasn’t until ‘Bitch’ that I came out of it (and Mick came back in front of me. RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME. FOR LONG TIME PERIODS, I still can’t believe it. ‘Bitch’ I thought at the reveal, hmm, okay. But the RS rocked it. Boom! Back in elation, dancing, the Stones put fire in it.
The whole set list after the 3rd song, ‘Tumbling Dice’, somehow surprised me. I thought since I follow all the shows, I know what’s coming, except for the 1 shock and awe that’s been happening in ‘No Filter 2’ shows.
I did envision or dare hope ‘Beast of Burden’ coming. So now I am now the goofy chick at the start loudly ‘OH MY GOD’! I really hope that wasn’t picked up in a recording. Or, the, ‘I love you Mick!’ I yelled out. (Maybe twice)
When I got back from the show, I called my husband, and tried to explain what being at their last England show meant to me. To have walked the streets where they started, visiting ‘Eel Pie Museum’ and seeing invoices from 1964 when they were a scrambling, boyish band looking for 45 pounds a gig.
To seeing the emotions of Mick’s face (ever so slightly) I was worried about Charlie. Not about his performance, never, but I thought ‘is he not feeling well?’ Then he’d grin, I saw maybe 3, and that was warming. His solo bow at introduction: He seemed perhaps choked up, but ever and always the professional.
Ronnie Wood carries the load of guitar playing, and he is in top fine form. To me, he SHINES. His solos on ‘Can’t Always Get What You Want’ were dazzling.
‘Satisfaction’ for all the angst and time of getting here, to be with them and have Keith and Mick together, I see them close and clearly, to be a witness to it, I am not a spectator.
Their music has been with me over over over I play the songs, for 38 years. It’s an art they created, I’ve taken into myself, playing the music relentlessly.
I will forever be grateful, honored, and humbled to have been allowed to support them in the last 3 years by writing online, talking about the numerous projects, releases, and of course, finally attending the shows in person, 2015, 2017, 2018.
We often don’t know what we have until it’s gone. But I know. I know The Rolling Stones, and will always.
"Beast Of Burden" was great to hear, and the special voice of guest singer James Bay made the song even better. Normally I am not a big fan of guest artists on stage with the Stones, but this was a really great choice!
The band was in a great mood, and everybody did their best to make a great final show in UK. The power was for sure turned up more than normal, because I have never felt any pain in my ears like tonight, not in years, and certainly not at an outdoor stadium show.
The final song "Satisfaction" ended at 10:28pm, two minutes before curfew time. Keith decided to "rock on", and tonight we got a two minutes extention of "Satisfaction". It seems like they did not want to finish, but at 10:30pm sharp it was all over. Thanks for nine great shows during this mini UK & Ireland tour.
On our way out of the stadium, they said something about "Unfortunately". Thousands of fans walked our way towards tube stations near Hunslow, rather than taking the train from Twickenham. We stayed in Hunslow, and just walked in what we thought was the right direction, it should take some thirty minutes if we walked right. After an hour of walking we gave up and took residence i.e. a break for beers and food at the The Cinnamon Lounge, an Indian restaurant & Bar in Isleworth. I later found out we had walked totally wrong... We had a great time talking to other fans who also took residence there for food and drinks. Two friends at the table next to us said this was their first ever show. One of them had got the show as a birthday present from his friend as he turned 40. What a great idea, and what a great friend. Two hours later it was still impossible to get a taxi. The restaurant closed, and the staff took us for free to Hunslow in their car, even if they were on to a different direction. Excellent British service!
So wind the clock on 55 years or so, and the locals still don't know why it is called Eel Pie island,but the Stones are back in this neck of the woods.Hoping they too might fall into the nostalgia and dig out some obscure gem ?A lot of hope and anticipation.
Support James Bay came and went.Shiny pants and a nice guitar lick or two.Pretty sure I recognised his final number.The crowd were rather blasey about him,and more concerned with grabbing a beer in the collector vessel and soaking up the sun.What a great idea,no discarded items...what a shame I just wanted one.
Security tight in both pits,checking bands.But by the encore it looked just as packed as the Gold circle.Lax security between pitch and the gold areas.Plenty of aloof celebrities below the stage.Kudos to David Walliams ,probably Britain's greatest comedian/entertainer rocking out with Joe Public in the Gold area whilst posing for selfies and chatting to everyone.Britain certainly has musical talent in the house tonight,the greatest British talent ever.
The Stones rocked out onto the sacred rugger turf at 8.20 with "Street fighting man".And what a perfect,polished performance we got tonight from everyone.No bum notes and no technical cock ups.The place was packed to the rafters.In the circle we were liked sardines.It felt like a special night.Charlie's drums seemed to be high in the mix for" Iorr",and that just enhanced it."You think your the only woman in town,well you ain't" snarled Mick. Has he ever sounded so cockney as he bellowed "I like it". Lovely back up vocals by Sasha, she just gets better.
"Lovely to be back in Twickenham" says Mick and they launch into "Tumbling dice". Then "Paint it black" as demonic as ever.
Mick reminds us this is where it all stared , and tells us about playing blues at the Station hotel. This leads us nicely into "Ride 'em on down", and a great solo by Sir Ronnie.J ust love Mick's harmonica playing on this.
Vote winner is "Bitch".Mick makes some joke about sweet chariot and they launch into this rugged classic. Glad they dusted this off. Karl Denson does justice to the sax, Bobby must be looking down smiling.
"Anyone here from Tunisia?" jokes Mick. Lovely to hear "Beast of burden". Not sure about the duet with James Bay. Mick is such a great mover , and Bay is so wooden in his movements. He is stomping his feet and Mick is directing him to do a twirl. All a bit awkward. Vocally it sounded cool.
We move into the predictable sequence of songs now. Wish we had got a few surprises tonight. When you see many shows you can start to take it all for granted. Just looking around me I can see how enthusiastic the audience are. Stones novices becoming Stones converts. Still amazed at Mick's fitness, that full length of the stage sprint he does just before "Brown sugar" is at lightning speed. Pretty sure Ronnie has taken up running too.
A highlight at the end was the extension to "Satisfaction". Ronnie took his guitar off at one point but keef continued to belt out the riff.An unexpected mouth watering finale.
Next stop for me is Warsaw...
Then full power ahead with IORR, Tumbling Dice and (wow!) Paint it Black, before this real classic: Ride Em On Down. According to Ian Stewart’s notes it was on the band’s first ever set list at the Marquee Club in July 1962. Many of the people at the Twickenham concert weren’t even born yet!
Both Bitch and Beast of Burden (tough start, but with this happy youngster James Bay, whom I didn’t even know, sorry, making up for it) were both powerful and refreshing. After that it was, at least for me, back into relax mode, just purely enjoying all those well known songs. There was never a dull moment. It was pure joy to sing and dance along with YCAGWYW, Honky Tonk Women, off course “Silver” and “Run” and so on and to see Keith and Ronnie happily swinging over the the stage. Mick frequently “out of control” during for instance Sympathy and Midnight Rambler and most of all Satisfaction (man oh man !), with in between a swinging Miss You, powerful renditions (Keith and Ronnie) of Start Me Up, Jumping Jack Flash and Brown Sugar. And Charlie, well what to say. Without him ....
The encore with Gimme Shelter (pretty little power voice Sasha) and Satisfaction was almost like a separate show on its own! I left, voice gone, as a very happy man. Thanks once more and, I trust that time is still on our side, see you again!
I hope you get the picture. Like many places in the UK, except the Olympic area, the big stadia are in residential areas and whilst everyone agrees we need better public transport, few people want to pay for it (and we taxpayers pay one way or another) and few want the additional infrastructure close to their home. So when, after the Stones finished their last UK show this year, and some train issues miles away created chaos for fans leaving the stadium, there were few trains from Twickenham if any. Some folks walked for 3 hours to get back home/to their hotels. The staff at the stadium were not that helpful either; the police in the streets were; there were many frustrated people.
Which is a pity because the gig itself was another great one. I stood just behind the normally reserved Dean G, and he was bouncing up and down the throwing his arms in the air – just like everyone else. It was the same mixture of energy and musicianship, performance and emotion from the band. And it started with Street Fighting Man. Right through the now standard 19 songs they rocked.
We got Bitch. A real rocking version; Ronnie playing the riff, Keith the solos, the saxes filling-in throughout. The occasional prompt from Mick as they entered “the bridge”. Beast of Burden started a little hesitantly, with Mick encouraging Keith to wind it up. James Bay disappointed – he didn’t know the words and Mick pulled him forwards from the teleprompter so he looked really lost. Rambler again really rocked and included the Robert Johnson Come into my Kitchen snippet.
There were a few remarks about how the Stones had really got going in west London. Richmond, Ealing, Eel Pie island – all are close by. Mick and Ronnie used to live in Richmond. We had the inevitable comment about Tunisia – England’s soccer team beat them in Russia the previous evening. There was just an occasional glimpse that the band were thinking that this might be the last time in London, or at least in a big stadium. Not that you would have seen any hint of fragility or lack of energy or enthusiasm.
In fact they continued the very high performance standard of this tour. I think that overall they are playing as well, and enjoying it as much, as ever – well at least since the 60s. That feedback loop of energy from the crowd and back sustains them, and us. It also allows some of the other musicians some space to excel – Tim, Darryl and Chuck seem to have more scope to let it loose. Sasha, Bernard and Karl are as strong as ever – and Sasha and Bernard were brought up front to sing with Mick.
What else is there left to say? I wish this level of togetherness, and the consistently high standard of playing had been there for many years. I wish the UK made the tough decisions on infrastructure (money and need). I wish this Tour would go on for many more months…. If any of us had the money and could take the pace.
Photos by Hauke Jürgensen
Photos by Hauke Jürgensen
Photos by Klaus Lauterbach
Photos by Hendrik Mulder
Photos by Bjornulf Vik
Photos by Bjornulf Vik
Photos by Bjornulf Vik
Photo by Bjornulf Vik
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