The Rolling Stones, “No Filter In Stockholm” (Crystal Cat CC 1087/ 88)
Disk 1; Intro / Sympathy For The Devil / It’s Only Rock’n Roll / Tumbling Dice / Just Your Fool / Ride ‘Em On Down / Under My Thumb / Sweet Virginia / You Can’t Always Get What You Want / Paint It Black / Honky Tonk Women / Happy (Keith) / Slipping Away (Keith)
Disk 2; Miss You / Midnight Rambler / Street Fighting Man / Start Me Up / Brown Sugar / Jumping Jack Flash / Gimme Shelter / Satisfaction – Play with Fire (9/9-17) / Out Of Control (12/9 – 17) / Dancing With Mr. D (12/9 – 17)
With this possibly the last release from the tracks as regarding the Stones ‘No Filter’ tour, 2017, it may also be the strongest too – We’ve heard Rattlesnakes contribution and the first Stones release from the Golden Eggs label (As well as the cataloguing of the tour by the No Label releases which were most eager to shoot). As we’ve come to expect from the Crystal Cat, they’ve swept in to your collection once again with a fantastic audience recording of their own capture. Even though the tapes that you’ve heard before have been of an incredible form, sorry guys, the Crystal Cat is THE ONE to own.
A solid taping, full of soundboard-like heft but with a gentle edge of audience to float it, you’d be hard pushed to find anything better that wasn’t official, and even then I might suggest you wouldn’t find it as much fun. You will find yourself slapping your forehead with the palm of your hand, exclaiming, “How DID they do that”, as you hear the sound of a label capturing such clarity, from the middle of an audience in a packed stadium in Stockholm. I honestly don’t think I’ve heard Darryl’s bass playing so keenly, Mick’s voice cracks a little in the middle of ‘YCAGWYW’, some member of the audience say’s ‘Is that him – bass player?’ as Bernard Fowler is introduced (I mean, I’m a fan, but still!), it’s all part of the little bits of audio magic.
Though there is, as always, and respect paid to Keef’s guitar playing, there are some chunky clunkers here – notably ‘It’s Only R n’ R’, the hurried, crumple of fuss at the end of ‘YCAGWYW’ (Though they make up for that with the giddy, jazz styled reprise coda) though Keef does keep the game close to his chest. It has to be said though, the show, from the right side of the 14 dates (IE; After they’d skipped over the bump in the road that was that middle stage), is great, from the 21 seconds of intro onwards, the whole show has a great energy – Our song vote for tonight is a rare, ‘Sweet Virginia’, Jagger cracks on that the band aren’t particularly au fait with the song but also apologises for the fact that they don’t know ‘Stockholm i mitt hjärta’ (Think of it as an anthem for Stockholm county), ‘Sweet Virginia’ sounds brilliant regardless and the woozy sax solo in the middle is just wonderful – Props to the funky jam at the end of ‘Under My Thumb’ especially – a theme that the band seem to return to more than a couple of times. Ronnie’s solo in the middle of ‘Midnight Rambler’ is brilliant enough to see sparks fly and sets a precedent for the rest of the track.
‘Street Fighting Man’ maybe the only disappointment of the evening – Hard to pinpoint but it sounds to be at odds with itself at times – Almost like it’s struggling to get itself in gear, it is however, still pretty evened out and presents Darryl’s bass and Chuck’s piano playing in a fantastic light. ‘Brown Sugar’ starts off a little uneasy as Keith gets his head around the riff but ‘Jumping Jack Flash’ really tries to unravel itself at first – Keith hits the wrong chords a couple of times before he’s able to correct himself, catching his fingers around the strings, he seems to have let the night get to him and it shows, the same happens at the beginning of ‘Gimmie Shelter’, tentative steps before Keith finds his way and then he’s away again. ‘Satisfaction’ gets a large reaction and after a little teasing, it springs to life – Not unconditionally show-stopping but it does bear a solid resemblance to one we used to know
The bonus tracks from Hamburg and Munich, respectively, are rarities from the tour – The sound, while not as comparable are the main set, (A little distant) it’s still very, very strong and more than listenable, ‘Out Of Control’ and ‘Dancing With Mr. D’ are deeply dark renditions and all the better for it.
On top of all of this, the packaging for this set is just as sweet – A trifold digipack close to the old Godfather / New Golden Eggs packaging, just a little taller, packed with some brilliant photos (Some exclusive, some taken from press), a lovely thick book detailing the band, their arrival, their tour dates, the stadium, gig posters, the very large merchandise stalls and two short essays by Ansgar Firshing and Alwyn W, with a short footnote by D.S.
I really can’t praise it enough without over praising. An awesome set with or without headphones – If you are just going to buy the one, it’s this one.If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)