Iggy Pop And The Stooges, Hammersmith Apollo, London

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The Independent Culture

Expectation for the reunited band outweighs their historic lustre. This is because the first two of The Stooges' three albums are still suspended at the heart of anything that calls itself punk: raw, primal, sexual rock'n'roll that nothing has yet overtaken.

The sense that The Stooges have walked straight out of 1975 into this venue is driven home by every move Iggy Pop makes. His sinewy, topless body is ageless. Humping and riding the speaker stacks, he is the iconic sleeve of Raw Power brought to life. When, on "Dirt", he clutches imaginary dust from the air, then arches his back unnaturally as he leans forward into the crowd, we are witnessing sexual rock stagecraft from another era. Iggy learnt from watching Jim Morrison, after all. The Stooges' dark psychedelic strum behind him also bares witness to the time when they began. But the preceding "TV Eye", in which drummer Scott Asheton booms a vast beat, and his brother Ron studiously rasps another note, reminds you how they wrenched that time out of shape.

The different kinds of confrontational disorder The Stooges deal in then coalesce on "Fun House", as the band hit a perfect moment of Free Jazz breakdown, and Iggy swan-dives straight into the crowd. With Fun House exhausted, the Stooges blast through most of their debut for the encore. The ominous abnegation of "I Wanna Be Your Dog" sees Iggy sink into the crowd again. But for "Real Cool Time", he then takes his constitutional trust in chaos and his fans to the limit by demanding a stage invasion. Swiftly, it's swamped by flailing, dancing fansmany violently grabbing the singer, who seems to relish their roughness. The Stooges are now living history: rock's ongoing essence.