Buffalo’s Rock ‘N’ Roll Animals (Dog N Cat DAC-027)
Rich Stadium, Buffalo, NY – September 27th, 1981
Disc 1: Under My Thumb, When The Whip Comes Down, Let’s Spend The Night Together, Shattered, Neighbours, Black Limousine, Down The Road Apiece, Just My Imagination, Twenty Flight Rock, She’s So Cold, Time Is On My Side, Beast Of Burden, band introductions, Let It Bleed, You Can’t Always Get What You Want
Disc 2: Tops, Tumbling Dice, Little T & A, Let Me Go, Hang Fire, Start Me Up, Miss You, Honky Tonk Women, All Down The Line, Brown Sugar, Jumping Jack Flash, Street Fighting Man
The Dog n Cat label have made it their mission to give us the most comprehensive collection of Tattoo You 1981 soundboards on the planet. Buffalo’s Rock ‘N’ Roll Animals is another soundboard recording documenting one of the initial shows on their long tour that year. All of the soundboards have been excellent and very enjoyable listening experiences, but the quality of the Buffalo soundboard is perhaps the poorest of the lot.
In contrast to the sterling sound on the Dallas tapes, this one has significant levels of hiss and distortion and an overall fuzziness to the music. Also it was a very windy day at Rich Stadium (the band mention it a couple times throughout the show) and that picks up on the mics. Not to say this is a waste of time, it certainly isn’t. It is great to hear this show is very good quality, but the standard set by the previous boards is very high and this one just doesn’t measure up.
The Stones’ previous visit to the good city of Buffalo was their Fourth of July concert on the Some Girls tour in 1978. That was characterized by everybody wanting to have fun on the holiday but the show fell flat for some reason and the band delivered a mediocre concert. The 1981 concert was the third of the long tour following the opening two dates in Philadelphia.
In front of 80,000 fans they deliver a very interesting show that has some technical problems. Ernie Watts wasn’t on the tour by this time (he would join the tour on October 7th in San Diego) and the arrangements with his saxophone are much missed. The set list contains the rare songs “Down The Road Apiece” and “Tops”, which is horribly out of tune. “Never a wrong note” Mick jokes afterwards.
The soundboard recording is missing the first four songs. “Under My Thumb”, “When The Whip Comes Down”, “Let’s Spend The Night Together”, and “Shattered” come from the very clear audience source that was released in full as Buffalo ’81 on Dandelion (94006/7, 94004/5).
The final two songs are missing from that release so we have “Jumping Jack Flash” and “Street Fighting Man” for the first time. The soundboard source is effortlessly spliced in during Mick’s introduction to “Neighbours”. However with so many excellent soundboards being released by Dog n Cat these days this release will only appeal to the die-hard completist.