1. Continental Drift (intro)
2. Start Me Up
3. Sad Sad Sad
4. Miss You
5. Rock and a Hard Place
6. Ruby Tuesday
7. You Can't Always Get What You Want
8. Factory Girl
9. Can't be Seen
10. Little Red Rooster
11. Paint it Black
12. Sympathy for the Devil
13. Brown Sugar
14. Jumping Jack Flash
17. Sex Drive
A couple of ballad/blues gems, one great guitar riff, but most of the rock numbers lack true grit
- April, 1991
- Rock On Rock Recommends:
Ruby Tuesday; Little Red Rooster; Jumping Jack Flash; Highwire
RECORDED on the Rolling Stones spectacular Steel Wheels American tour and Urban Jungle European stint, Flashpoint fails to re-create the great concert atmosphere enhanced by one of the biggest stage productions ever seen.
The rock and roll songs are missing bite > except for a fiery Jumping Jack Flash.
But blues hit Little Red Rooster, with a solo by Eric Clapton guesting on guitar, and Ruby Tuesday are a couple of gems to rival their original studio recordings.
Cherished Rolling Stones ballad Ruby Tuesday features great flamenco-style guitar. A similar sound is tried but fails to have the same endearing effect on the rarely played live Factory Girl (from Beggars Banquet album) and Paint It Black.
The album ends with two new studio tracks > hard-riffing rocker Highwire and flat funk number Sex Drive.
Highwire is an anti-Iraq War song > the first Iraq War that is, when George Bush Senior was let into the White House. Keith Richards’ great guitar work is undermined slightly by a repetitive chorus in an otherwise hard-edged rocker.
Halfway through the live performance on Flashpoint, Keith Richards says: “OK, let’s cut out the crap … let’s go” > and proceeds to sing a really crappy Can’t Be Seen.
The remaining tracks don’t start me up > they’re caught between decent rock and a hard place.
It’s a bit sad, sad, sad when you can’t get no satisfaction. Oh well, you can’t always get what you want. [OK, that’s enough now – Ed]
SPECTACULAR STEEL WHEELS STAGE
THE stage for the Rolling Stones five-month Steel Wheels tour of America was the largest ever built up to that time.
The multi-storey set displaying urban decay featured fantastic lighting perfectly timed with the music.
The stage took 80 trucks to move and about 350 people to assemble.
STONES SONG “APPALLING IN TIME OF WAR”
Studio single Highwire > with its anti-Iraq War stance , incurred the wrath of, amongst others, British politicians and the BBC. A Conservative member of Parliament called it appalling in a time of war and the BBC added it to a list of songs it “discouraged” its DJs from playing.
There was, surprisingly, little backlash in America.
Mick Jagger told the London Times newspaper: “Pop music should address a broad range of subjects > not just sex and cars”.
> WRITTEN by MALCOLM LIVERMORE