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Thierry's review of the show, part 1

(Posted to Undercover on June 22, 1998)

Hi y'all, me again !

Now the Stones part...

The intro started at 21:28, Keith came up very quickly on stage, but Ronnie was there having fun behind Charlie's drums before Keith could be spotted.


Keith hit the first note of Satisfaction at 21:30:02. He was widely smiling having obviously a wonderful time. The weather was still very warm, I'd say about 27°C (80°F). A big roar from the crowd when Keith stepped on stage, and he walked around the front of the stage for a long moment, smiling and laughing before he played, pointing a couple of people with his finger.

Then Mick arrived by the horn section area. His voice was loud, really strong, and he seemed to feel very comfortable.

The tempo was a little bit slow, very relax. They all seemed to be enjoying themselves a lot.

Very good version of this song. Great sound, very clear, not too loud.

Let's Spend The Night Together

Another great version. A little slow too, or maybe it was not slow, but very relax and confident. The crowd was not very reactive, but the guys were having great time on stage.

Flip The Switch

I like this song very much, one of my favorites on B2B (easy, I have about 9 favorites on this album, but this one is in my personal Top3), and I loved it in Toronto, and in MSG1 too, even if the NY version was not as clear. But this version really blew me out !!!

Keith was so easy, Mick's voice perfect, Charlie's tempo perfect (a little slower too). Not much of Ronnie, he smoked more than he played, but he was as always funny to watch. The backing singers were very clear and loud (not too loud), and the sound was so good I could hear separately the 3 of them without any effort.

Gimmie Shelter

I love this song but I hate what Lisa's efforts make of it this tour. But I must say she was a little bit less "obvious" this time, so she wasted it less (to me). First, she was not having her big red scarf she always waves stupidly (Hope someone stole it and she doesn't find another one before Paris), and also she didn't take the stage over as much as she did in the shows I saw in the US/Canada.

Great guitar solo. Ronnie and Keith were interacting a lot by times. Everybody was really ON... but the crowd. I was amazed to see very few people dancing, none clapping, none singing. Maybe I was in a quiet VIP zone, but I couldn't even hear anything from the back of the ground. Strange. After song applause was not big for 60,000+ crowd.

Dead Flowers

When I saw the acoustic guitar handed to Mick, I thought they maybe wouldn't play ASMB (I'm fed up with this song, it bores me but I never heard it live), and I hoped they would play Sister Morphine... Dead Flowers was a good surprise. Not much slide, no pedal steal guitar, but Ronnie was playing!

When Mick announced the title of the song, I knew he trusted his voice, as it is a tricky one to sing, with very high notes. Actually, he cheated a lot, more than before, using low tone for usually high notes, but this version was great, and his voice was perfect. This guy is a pro ! Impressive.

It's Only Rock'n'Roll

Nice fuck up at the start. Mick wanted to launch the song (1-2-3-4 !), but Keith was in front of Charlie talking with Ronnie, and apparently having fun, and didn't start. Then K&R turned to Mick who was looking at them with his eyes wide open in amazement, and they all laughed out, when Mick realized it was just a joke Keith was doing. Maybe I'm wrong about this, but I think this is really what happened. Can anybody confirm ? Anyway, Keith started the opening riff just a few seconds later, and they rocked the place!!!

But the crowd response was still very weak, and Mick had to go on the sides of the stage and then got only "local" response. What an audience... Do the Belgians always go to sleep at sundown, whatever happens ?

Anyway, very good version, and still this incredible sound quality... Never heard such a great live sound.

Saint Of Me

What can I say ? Again a fantastic version, quiet, confident, a bit laidback. As for Flip The Switch, the only word I could find to describe it compared to MSG, Chicago or even Toronto is that I feel these songs have reached perfect stage "maturity". They really "master" these songs now, and are not yet bored with playing them. Obviously to me, they were also having great fun.

At the end, all stopped and Mick made the crowd sing "Oh yeah... you'll never make a Saint Of Me" 4 or 5 times, and it is the only time I heard the crowd singing, except maybe for LARS on the B-stage. Even Miss You had no crowd response...

Out Of Control

Shinny jacket... Perfect voice, Mick even tried (carefully, though) a few extra stunts. Not much spaz dance, he didn't go as wild as he did in Toronto, but also a musically very mature version. Crowd asleep. Too much beer ? Too much emotion from the football game ?

Love In Vain

Mick made the usual little speech about the website and cybervote, but a very short "downscaled" version. I could see Keith being handed his creamwhite tele and thought "We lost"... But Ronnie had his black dobro style tele he uses for slide parts, and I it wouldn't be UMT :-) The screen scrolled down very slowly, Mick made a few comments about the losing songs ("Respectable - not enough people had respect for this song to win tonight"), and then LOVE IN VAIN was the winner !!!!!

My kids were blown away, as they were the ones who started the original wish : they asked me, separately and spontaneously, if I could ask my friends on the web to vote for this song. As I love this song, I voted for it too, and talked with other glimmers going to Werchter1, and all of them agreed to request this song, and then you all voted for it ! Thanks so much Mayumi, Chrissss, Thomas, Peter, Lieve, Michael, MarcL, MarcB, Phil, and all of you who actually voted and made people vote on the list !!!!

My kids on the way back asked me to write themselves an email to UC to thank personally the list, so they might post one someday. They're so happy and proud that the Stones played one song "just for them". It will stay forever in their memory.

So we had a very different version than the Toronto one : Keith was playing electric, Ronnie did a very different solo part (In Toronto, he played really close to the GYYYO Mick Taylor version), apparently completely improvised, with a few fuckups but real full of heart.

And Mick sang one of the best blues I heard him sing.

Purrrrfect !!!! ;-)

Gotta work now. Soon part 2 !

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