Pirate World (Refined Masters)
Pirates World Amusement Park, Miami, FL – November 2nd, 1970
(60:23): You’re My Girl, Too Much Woman / Street Fighting Man / Too Much Woman, Maybe I’m Amazed, Country Comforts, Flying, Cut Across Shorty, Plynth -An Old Raincoat Won’t Ever Let You Down – Gasoline Alley, Its All Over Now, I Feel So Good
Pirate World contains rare aural document from The Faces’ poorly documented second US tour. It is an hour long soundboard recording from Miami, Florida that was released before on Pirates World(Gold Standard 95-F-7761) with several non-album singles and Small Faces Featuring Rod Stewart•That’s Evil (93-FA-1791) contains most of this show along with a tape from the Boston Tea Party on March 27th, 1970.
These releases claim it’s an FM radio broadcast, but it’s clearly a rough soundboard recording. The vocals and guitars are centered in the right channel, the drums and bass in the left and the audience noises are pushed to the back. It is very clear and enjoyable, especially given its age.
There is also some dispute about the location. All of the releases say this was on November 2nd at Pirate World, an amusement park in Florida. Nico Zentgraf places this show on October 25th in the Municipal Auditorium in Miami. There is scant internal evidence for the venue, but before they play “It’s All Over Now” Rod Stewart thanks the audience for coming on such a muggy night, something that wouldn’t make sense in an indoor venue like the auditorium.
The Faces were on a double bill with The Grease Band for this show. (The Grease Band were Joe Cocker’s band from Woodstock who set off on their own when Cocker fired them late in 1969). At the beginning of this tape an announcer tells the audience that The Grease Band didn’t show up, and The Faces wanted to play first anyway so they’ll go on.
It’s telling that their set is comprised mostly of covers and solo material. The first song “You’re My Girl” comes from Rod Stewart’s second solo album Gasoline Alley released just a couple months before. Stewart maintained a solo career parallel to The Faces from day one and the sharing of material is not uncommon.
A cover of Ike and Tina Turner’s “Too Much Woman” follows. This was developed purely as a stage piece, a long jam session which veers into The Rolling Stones’ “Street Fighting Man” in the middle. It’s a stunning piece of work which was never officially released by the band although they did play it on the BBC the following year.
Some mumbling on stage and Stewart says: “well, we’re here. We’ve been here the whole time.” and introduces “Maybe I’m Amazed.” It is a faithful cover of the Paul McCartney song. It isn’t until about half way through the show they actually play an original. Stewart describes “Flying” as “our first unsuccessful single.”
The showpiece of the events is the long meditation on “Plynth.” Dominated by Ron Wood’s slide guitar, it lasts for more than eleven minutes with references to “An Old Raincoat Won’t Ever Let You Down” and “Gasoline Alley” (with vocals) before returning to the main “Plynth” theme. It’s a good attempt at having a long improvisational epic which other bands were doing at the time, but it never really goes anywhere and peters out at the end.
The set closes with a long cover of The Rolling Stones’ “It’s All Over Now” followed by “I Feel So Good.” Pirate World is packaged in a digipak with a plastic tray to house the CD. There is a collage of photographs from the early days of the band decorating the package. Refined Masters always do a good job with the mastering and this is no exception. This is a very welcomed release of a rare tape and is worth having.If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)