Flashpoint (album)

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Flashpoint
Live album by The Rolling Stones
Released 8 April 1991
Recorded 25 November 19 December 1989, 16 February 28 July 1990 (except "Highwire" and "Sex Drive": 7–11 January 1991)
Genre Rock
Length 76:12
Language English
Label Rolling Stones/Virgin
Producer Chris Kimsey, The Glimmer Twins
The Rolling Stones Live chronology
"Still Life"
(1981)
Flashpoint
(1991)
Stripped
(1995)
Singles from Flashpoint
  1. "Highwire"
    Released: 1 March 1991
  2. "Ruby Tuesday"
    Released: 24 May 1991

Flashpoint is a live album by British rock band The Rolling Stones. It was released in 1991, having been recorded throughout 1989 and 1990 on the mammoth Steel Wheels/Urban Jungle Tour. It was the first live album by the group since 1982's "Still Life" (American Concert 1981). It was recorded using binaural recording. This gives the effect that the concert audience is behind the home listener. The audience cheer track was taken from the Rolling Stones' 1970 live album Get Yer Ya-Yas Out, complete with an audience member shouting out a request: "'Paint It, Black', 'Paint It, Black', you devil". The two studio tracks on the album would be the last for bassist and long-time member Bill Wyman as a Rolling Stone.

History[edit]

Recorded across North America, Europe and Japan, Flashpoint is also the first Rolling Stones release of the 1990s and, unlike previous live sets, includes two new studio tracks: "Highwire" and "Sex Drive"; the former was released as a single earlier in 1991 and was a comment on the Gulf War.

Although the live selections are mostly familiar hits mixed in with new tracks from Steel Wheels, Flashpoint also includes songs like "Factory Girl" from 1968's Beggars Banquet and "Little Red Rooster", originally a No. 1 UK hit single in 1964, featured here with special guest Eric Clapton on guitar.

Bill Wyman's departure[edit]

As Flashpoint was The Rolling Stones' final release under their contract with Sony Music, the band signed a new lucrative long-term worldwide deal with Virgin Records in 1991, with the exception of Bill Wyman. After thirty years with the band, the 55-year-old Wyman decided that he had other interests he wanted to pursue and felt that, considering the size of the Steel Wheels project and tour, it was fitting to bow out at that time. Although he would not officially announce his departure until January 1993 – during the interim the rest of the band had repeatedly asked him to reconsider – he had talked about leaving the band for at least ten years. After his departure, Ronnie Wood was finally taken off salary and made a full member of the Rolling Stones partnership, 18 years after he joined the band.

Release[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 2/5 stars link
Entertainment Weekly F link
Los Angeles Times 3/4 stars link
Robert Christgau link
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars link

Flashpoint was released in April 1991 and was generally well-received, with "Highwire" becoming a rock radio hit, and managed to reach No. 6 in the UK and No. 16 in the US where it went gold.

In 1998, Flashpoint was remastered and reissued by Virgin Records, and again in 2010 by Universal Music.

Track listing[edit]

All songs by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, except where noted.

CD[edit]

  1. "(Intro) Continental Drift" – 0:26
  2. "Start Me Up" – 3:54 (26 November 1989; Death Valley Stadium; Clemson, South Carolina)
  3. "Sad Sad Sad" – 3:33 (19 December 1989; Atlantic City Convention Center; Atlantic City, New Jersey)
  4. "Miss You" – 5:55 (25 November 1989; Gator Bowl; Jacksonville, Florida)
  5. "Rock and a Hard Place" – 4:52 (25 November 1989; Gator Bowl; Jacksonville, Florida)
  6. "Ruby Tuesday" – 3:33 (27 February 1990; Korakuen Dome; Tokyo, Japan)
  7. "You Can't Always Get What You Want" – 7:26 (25 November 1989; Gator Bowl; Jacksonville, Florida)
  8. "Factory Girl" – 2:47 (6 July 1990; Wembley Stadium; London, England)
  9. "Can't Be Seen" – 4:17 (26 November 1989; Death Valley Stadium; Clemson, South Carolina)
  10. "Little Red Rooster" (Willie Dixon) – 5:15 (19 December 1989; Atlantic City Convention Center; Atlantic City, New Jersey)
  11. "Paint It Black" – 4:02 (13 June 1990; Olympic Stadium; Barcelona Spain)
  12. "Sympathy for the Devil" – 5:35 (26 February 1990; Korakuen Dome; Tokyo, Japan)
  13. "Brown Sugar" – 4:06 (28 July 1990; Stadio Delle Alpi; Turin, Italy)
  14. "Jumpin' Jack Flash" – 5:00 (27 February 1990; Korakuen Dome; Tokyo, Japan)
  15. "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" – 6:09 (26 November 1989; Death Valley Stadium; Clemson, South Carolina)
  16. "Highwire" – 4:44
  17. "Sex Drive" – 5:07

Vinyl LP[edit]

Side one
  1. (Intro) "Continental Drift" – 0:29
  2. "Start Me Up" – 3:54
  3. "Sad Sad Sad" – 3:33
  4. "Miss You" – 5:55
  5. "Ruby Tuesday" – 3:34
  6. "You Can't Always Get What You Want" – 7:26
  7. "Factory Girl" – 2:48
  8. "Little Red Rooster" (Dixon) – 5:15
Side two
  1. "Paint It, Black" – 4:02
  2. "Sympathy for the Devil" – 5:35
  3. "Brown Sugar" – 4:10
  4. "Jumpin' Jack Flash" – 5:00
  5. "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" – 6:08
  6. "Highwire" – 4:46
  7. "Sex Drive" – 4:28
  • "Rock and a Hard Place" and "Can't Be Seen", were not included on the vinyl version.

Other songs/B-Sides and Charity Single[edit]

The following songs were recorded during the same set of concerts and later released as B-Sides:

  • "2000 Light Years from Home" – 3:24 (13 June 1990; Olympic Stadium; Barcelona Spain) – Only released on "Highwire" singles
  • "Gimme Shelter" – 4:47 (26 November 1989; Death Valley Stadium; Clemson, South Carolina) – Charity single released in 1993
  • "Harlem Shuffle" (Bob Relf, Ernest Nelson) – 4:35 (27 February 1990; Korakuen Dome; Tokyo, Japan) – Only released on one of the variations of the UK "Ruby Tuesday" single
  • "I Just Want to Make Love to You" (Dixon) – 3:58 (6 July 1990; Wembley Stadium; London, England) – Only released on "Highwire" singles
  • "Play with Fire" (Nanker Phelge) – 3:31 (26 November 1989; Death Valley Stadium; Clemson, South Carolina) – Released on "Ruby Tuesday" single
  • "Street Fighting Man" – 3:43 (25 August 1990; Wembley Stadium; London, England) – Only released on "Jumpin' Jack Flash" Maxi-CD singles
  • "Tumbling Dice" – 4:12 (24 August 1990; Wembley Stadium; London, England) – Only released on "Jumpin' Jack Flash" singles
  • "Undercover of the Night" – 3:59 (19 December 1989; Atlantic City Convention Center; Atlantic City, New Jersey) – Released on the "Ruby Tuesday" single

All tracks besides "Gimme Shelter" released in 1990.

Personnel[edit]

The Rolling Stones
Additional personnel
  • Bernard Fowler – backing vocals on "Highwire"
  • Katie Kissoon – backing vocals on "Sex Drive"
  • Tessa Niles – backing vocals on "Sex Drive"
  • Studio tracks mixed by Chris Kimsey and Mark Stent
  • Engineered by Mark Stent
  • Assistant Engineer Nick Hartley on "Sex Drive" and "Highwire"
  • Art direction and design by Garry Mouat and David Crow

Chart positions[edit]

Album
Year Chart Position
1991 UK Top 75 Albums[2] 6
1991 Billboard Pop Albums[3] 16
Singles
Year Single Chart Position
1991 "Highwire" The Billboard Hot 100[3] 57
1991 "Highwire" Mainstream Rock Tracks[3] 1
1991 "Highwire" Modern Rock Tracks[3] 28
1991 "Highwire" Hot 100 Airplay[3] 70
1991 "Highwire" UK Top 75 Singles[2] 29
1991 "Ruby Tuesday" UK Top 75 Singles[2] 59
1991 "Sex Drive" Mainstream Rock Tracks[3] 40

Certification[edit]

Country Certification Sales
United States Gold 500,000
France 2× Gold 200,000
United Kingdom Silver 60,000
Germany Gold 100,000

References[edit]

  1. ^ Saulnier, Jason (8 April 2010). "Chuck Leavell Interview". Music Legends. Retrieved 6 May 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c "The Official Charts Company – Flashpoint (album)". The Official Charts Company. 6 May 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f "Flashpoint on Billboard". Rovi Corporation / Billboard. Retrieved 17 October 2012.