Glastonbury 2013 - review: The Rolling Stones prove you can always get what you want on The Pyramid Stage
It's only rock 'n' roll, but Glastonbury liked it: Rolling Stones dip in to deepest back catalogue in rock for festival debut
Glastonbury 2013 has been, and will be, defined as the year that the Stones finally, finally made it to Worthy Farm. Everywhere you look on site a pair of the band's famous lips stares out from a T-shirt. Usually being worn by someone barely old enough to remember Bridges to Babylon, let alone Beggars Banquet.
But they've finally agreed to a show. Or, “after all these years, they finally got around to asking us,” says Mick, having barely broken sweat swerving around the stage for “Jumpin' Jack Flash".
The notion that this is a Glastonbury moment to compare to Jay-Z's momentous 2008 showing, or Radiohead's famous 1997 is helped by the vast, vast swathes of people at the Pyramid Stage. If you squint, you can just about make out a mesh of tents on the horizon.
The Stones have had 50 years to work out how to put on a show worthy of this stage and here they prove it to the many thousands too young (or too poor) to buy a ticket to one of their regular shows. ”Paint it Black“ follows ”Jumpin' Jack Flash“ before Jagger and long-term backing singer Lisa Fischer team up to howl their way through ”Gimme Shelter“. It's not a bad start.
Mick's keen to point out that he and his boys are in the Glastonbury spirit and haven't just helicoptered in for two hours: ”We were here for Arctic Monkeys and I tried to go up the tower (an observation platform in the festival's Park area) but the queue was too long,“ he drawls before starting an edited version of Beggar's ”Factory Girl“ with location-appropriate lyrics: ”Waiting for a girl by my tipi/ waiting for a girl she took all my ecstasy.“
Keith is enjoying himself too, drawing one of the loudest cheers of the night when stepping up to sing Let It Bleed's ”You Got the Silver“ and a raucous "Happy“. Meanwhile erstwhile guitarist Mick Taylor is introduced by Sir Mick and ends up hanging around for most of the night, including for the evening's one flat point - a 10-minute-long solo run in ”Can't You Hear Me Knocking“ which gives approximately 20 per cent of the crowd an excuse to run to the long-drop loos. But it's all good from there, like ecstatic versions of ”Honky Tonk Women“ and ”Miss You“, before ”Start Me Up“ which extracts howls from the vast crowd as soon as Richards' plectrum hits the first two strings of his guitar. It's hit layered upon hit.
Before an encore of ”You Can't Always Get What You Want“ and a closing ”(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction“, ”Sympathy for the Devil“ and its field-filling ”woo woos“ steals the show. Of course, that's aided by a giant, animatronic phoenix sat atop the Pyramid stage throwing flames and waving its wings, as much as being the band's greatest work.
At a rate of one show every 50 years, it's unlikely the Stones will be back at Glastonbury any time soon, so this one's a collector's item. As the four (plus Mick) leave the stage to a raft of fireworks, even a band who've seen everything from Altamont to Wembley Stadium look stunned at the size of the crowd they've pulled. Heck, even Charlie's smiling.
Art Piece taken off website amid 'severe security alert'
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Academy criticised after no non-white actors nominated
tvAn expose of hooliganism masquerading as an ideological battle
artLee Hadwin can't draw when he's awake, but by night he's an artist
‘Remember the attackers are a cold-blooded, crazy minority’, says Blek le Rat
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Benedict Cumberbatch says Hollywood is better for black British actors
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 3 UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
- 4 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 5 Warriors in ancient Iraq suffered Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder more than 3,000 years ago, say researchers
Heavy metal producer's corpse to be mutilated by models as per his dying wish
Mr Selfridge series 3: Actress Kara Tointon says 'we're starting to see his demise'
Benedict Cumberbatch says Hollywood is better for black British actors
Downton Abbey season 5 episode 6 - review: Thomas and Lady Edith show sad signs of the times
Sia apologises for 'Elastic Heart' music video that sees Shia LaBeouf wrestle 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
George Galloway condemns 'racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag' Charlie Hebdo at freedom of speech rally
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd