The Rolling Stones – The Sad Tortured Story of .. (Rattlesnake RS 266)

rolling stones (2x) available

The Rolling Stones, “The Sad Tortured Story Of ..” (Rattlesnake RS 266)

Shepherds Bush Empire, London, England. June 8th, 1999

Some Girls / Melody / I Got The Blues / Brand New Car / Moon Is Up / You Got The Silver / Route 66 / Tumbling Dice / Brown Sugar / Jumping’ Jack Flash.

We all get stung sometimes. Maybe it’s an April fools joke, a comment that we make or a simple pratfall that causes to look around and make sure no-one was looking. Feel for the Rattlesnake label, a brand who have given us so much over the years, unearthed many fantastic studio recordings and concerts for our delectation who have seemingly fallen for a snipe attack which has given them cause to curse a tape collector who promised them an un-bootlegged tape – Known to have traded in collectors circles for some time – and has set them up royally.

The partial Brixton soundboard tape was announced to be forthcoming in March of this year along side a field recording from the Stone appearance at the Pinkpop festival in 2013. The track listing seemed to be very interesting indeed – Plenty of songs were played at the show that wouldn’t be played out on the larger shows on this tour. The Brixton show was intended to show the Stones eyeballing the crowd and warming up some of the great unleashed tracks from the vaults. The full show was originally released on the Dandelion labels, “Cow Skin and Pig Shoes”, an excellent audience recording over 2 disks, so we already knew what to expect but in much better quality.

So deep was the excitement for this soundboard, as soon as it was released, it was picked up and torrented, that when the doubt set in. One bat-eared listener and collector noticed that this was’t a true soundboard. Once measured against another set that they had in their collection, namely Crystal Cat’s “Sweet Home London” recorded on the same night as “Cow Skins ..” but from another, different but also very rich audience source. There was a cut in ‘Melody’ which marked the tape out as incomplete, trouble is, this was obvious on the Rattlesnake recording too.

It’s a shame that the RS label have suffered this attempt to bruise their reputation – Since their previous club gigs of the past year or so have been some of THE shows to collect, the artwork is, as usual, top notch and the only vintage recordings that you should be collecting seem to have come from this gang (With a few notable Eat A Peach, IMP and Goldplate releases in the mix) it’s an unfortunate turn of events. No doubt there’s more to come however and we’ll forget about this blemish in time.

File under unfortunate.

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  1. This Shepard’s Bush gig was also released by Sister Morphine in 1999 as ‘ Don’t Bust The Crust”. Its an excellent audience tape of a great show. Shame the above referenced title didn’t come up with the goods. FYI Sister Morphine also released another fine audie of the January 25. 1999 No Security opener in Oakland. This tape is often mistaken for a soundboard such is the quality. The SM label has taken some knocks over the years ( particularly by downloaders) but I always enjoyed them .


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