Live Review: The Rolling Stones, Philadelphia, July 23, 2019

To see the Rolling Stones in 2019 is to see many volumes of rock ‘n’ roll history before your eyes. To witness some of the greatest compositions in the rock oeuvre, one after the other, is like no other musical experience. A glorious, extended “Midnight Rambler” into the devastating “Paint It Black” followed by “Gimme Shelter” is as great of a three-song set as I could imagine seeing this year. And Jagger, Richards, Watts and Wood delivered not just that, but so many other greats that it’s like a stadium-sized jukebox of gold.

There was no phoning in here, either, with Mick skipping around like he is in his 30s while Keith still strikes just the right chord. Even with some rain, which provided for odd sights like Jagger spreading anti-slip talcum powder and a mop crew sopping up water on the catwalk while the Stones rocked “Paint It Black,” this band purrs like a musical lion, ready to roar out rawk memories with ease and comfort no other band can still.

While Jagger rattled off some funniness about Wawa and hoagies (obviously, part of the localized banter for every show), he also stated they have played Philadelphia now 54 years and most of the places they performed at are long gone. But the Rolling Stones stand tall and ready to deliver, and in a mid-summer show at Lincoln Financial Field, they showed why they are the best.

—words and photos by Chris Sikich