The Rolling Stones, ‘Mannheim 1973’ (No Label)
Disk 1: Introduction / Brown Sugar / Bitch / Gimme Shelter / Happy / Tumbling Dice / 100 Years Ago / Star Star / Angie / Sweet Virginia / You Can’t Always Get What You Want (50:23)
Disk 2: Dancing With Mr. D / Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo (Heartbreaker) / Midnight Rambler / Band Introductions – Honky Tonk Women / All Down The Line / Rip This Joint / Jumping Jack Flash / Street Fighting Man (42:23)
Live at Eisstadion, Mannheim, West Germany. 3rd September, 1973.
There are many disputes to flag the Stones best true year of touring – Wide swathes of fans all tend to agree on various differing years spanning between 1969 to 1989, for sure, each of these years has something to be commendable for and it’ll always be a good kick-about argument on the forums as to which song got played best when.
That said, would ‘Brussels Affair’ be so popular a show if 1973 was a bad year? Probably not and to prove that, the shows that exist from this year are also designated some kind of linchpin status because of Mick Taylor, but he’s just one end of the argument. Coming off of the end of a bunch of steaming hot albums, the Stones were one of the big survivors of the 60’s, while loosely intact (Brian, of course, had gone to the big discotheque in the sky) and were holding fast to the mantle of the worlds biggest rock band.
This concert, recorded live in Mannheim, Germany on the lengthy European leg of their tour has seen a few releases before on disks such as ‘Mannheim On Ice’ (Outsider Bird Records), the unfortunately named ‘Fire And Blimstone’ (sic) (Exile), ‘Germany 1973’ (Dog N Cat), ‘42 Years Ago’ (Tarantura) – From an earlier generation than the DNC tape) and ‘Mannheim On Ice’ from SODD. In mid 2020, the internet spawned a matrix by Falo and Captain Acid and put it out for download – Obviously it was bound to get picked up for pressing.
The second show of this leg, the band are in full flight, the break between the Asian leg of the tour with a couple of studio dates in-between has certainly invigorated them and along with their crack backing band of horn players, the band levy up an awesome show.
The sound is possibly the only detriment to this show – despite it’s matrix status of the two recordings being merged, the tapers don’t seem to have captured the best quality, or rather, they’ve caught the best quality that their equipment would allow at the time.
A mid-venue placement with the hallmarks of a 1970’s acoustic set up – Keef and Mick T’s guitars are the biggest noise, Bill’s bass the next rung down along side the horns, poor Charlie nearly indistinguishable from the melee.
The energy of the show is pushed up in to the red – Mick sounds as happy to be there as when his new sequins turn up – the two guitarists spinning silk threads out of electrically charged air. It’s no understatement to say that the audience react to their arrival on stage not unlike the Stone’s private jet touching down either.
I wouldn’t expect another ‘Brussels Affair’ from this set, it’s not the worst capture of a 1973 show to tickle your ears either however and, despite me listening to this show through headphones for the review, through speakers, I’d have to doubt that this show would be given the space to properly sing.
No filler but no killer either. A worthwhile purchase for the long-standing collector.