Gig of the Week: The Rolling Stones, 02 Arena, London SE10


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The Independent Culture

No one expected the Stones' 2012 gigs to include a free show (plus butterflies) at Hyde Park, but it's still a downer that these gigs have generated as much press for their reflection of the state of the ticketing market as for the 50th anniversary of the band who defined rock'n'roll's free spirit.

The booking fees alone cost more than many other bands' gigs – and don't even start us up on the satanic "secondary market". Still, if you had money and luck on your side, the chance to bag a ticket to see the band who patented the moves most bands have copied would be hard to resist, especially since their energies seem largely intact.

Ronnie's off the sauce, Mick is a miracle of stamina, and new song "Doom and Gloom" is livelier than "Streets of Love", even if it does sound like ZZ Top.

Whether Keef will come down from planet Zog for the event remains to be seen, but you can rely on Charlie's backbeat to prop him up – and the reunions with Mick Taylor and Bill Wyman may just help take fans' minds off the expense.

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