Shake States! (Stones of Fire SOF 9007-A/B)
United Center, Chicago, IL – March 26th, 1999
Disc 1 (45:33): Jumping Jack Flash, Live With Me, You Got Me Rocking, Respectable, Honky Tonk Woman, Moonlight Mile, Saint Of Me, Some Girls, Paint It Black, You Got The Silver, Before They Make Me Run
Disc 2 (57:31): Out Of Control, Route 66, Get Off My Cloud, Midnight Rambler, Tumblin’ Dice, It’s Only Rock N Roll, Start Me Up, Brown Sugar, Sympathy For The Devil
The Rolling Stones’ No Security tour came to the United Center in Chicago on March 26. Scaled back from the massive Bridges To Babylon production the previous year, the band puts on an impressive and sleek performance.
Although the United Center is an acoustical nightmare for concerts, the taper managed to produce a very good recording. It sounds sterile, but is detailed enough to give an accurate presentation of the events onstage. The taper makes occasional statements throughout the show, like how he loves “Saint Of Me” and how he hopes to sell his tape to Vinyl Gang (who obviously didn’t, but Stones Of Fire did).
There are also several annoying little cuts in the tape, normally between songs. No music is affected though, and it also sounds like there are little “bumps” between tracks like it was copied from a faulty master disc.
It starts off with the opening music leading into a rather slow, sloppy and limp “Jumping Jack Flash.” The show picks up with “Live With Me” where the saxophone dominates this particular performance, and the relatively new “You Got Me Rocking” truly gets the audience interested in the show. (Quite why people would pay hundreds of dollars to be disinterested in beyond me).
In general, the newer songs and newer added songs are performed much better than the Stones warhorses. “Moonlight Mile” sounds despondent, melancholy, but very uplifting in this recording. “Saint Of Me” thunders from the stage, as does “Out Of Control.”
“Some Girls” was the other innovation for this tour, having never been performed until this tour. Keith has a lot of laughs making fun of himself during his two songs set, “You Got The Silver” (“I’ve been trying to get this right for thirty years” he quips) and “Before They Make Me Run.”
“Route 66,” “Get Off Of My Cloud” and a very effective version of “Midnight Rambler” are played on the B-stage. The taper catches some of the funky instrumental music as they make their way back to the main stage for “Tumblin’ Dice.”
Unfortunately things become quite stale for “It’s Only Rock And Roll,” “Start Me Up” and “Brown Sugar.” They all sound very tired and played by rote. But the show really is saved with a scorching version of “Sympathy For The Devil” as the encore. The percussion, piano, and guitar frills all work perfectly together for the best number of the night.
Shake States! is packaged in a double slimline jewel case with basic tour pictures on the artwork. On the back it proudly states it was pressed on silver discs and to be wary of cheap imitations of cheap CD-R. That was common on this family of labels (also including Heart Breaker and The Diagrams Of Led Zeppelin), and things would change with the CDR format becoming popular than silver discs.
Nonetheless, this is a good souvenier if you were at this show. There are much better titles from this tour in circulation, however, and this one can be safely passed over.