Fresh outta the fire to you, dear readers…
By Fred Mills
Here’s a huge treat for Patti Smith fans: not one but TWO brand new (as in, June 2015 vintage) Smith shows, both in outstanding sound quality, for free download. Naturally the MP3s are hosted by the ever-diligent archivists over at Big O Zine, and each show comes complete with downloadable artwork for printing out.
The firs (see link above) is the June 23 show at the Tanzbrunnen in Koln, Germany, and it’s particularly noteworthy because it finds the Patti Smith Group doing their classic Horses album in its entirety—a pretty damn spirited reading, at that. The concert also features some PSG faves following the album, plus a smoking Velvet Underground medley.
The second download is the group’s June 28 performance at the annual Glastonbury festival, and while the Koln show is an audience recording, this one is taken from a webcast. It’s a shortened concert compared to Koln but has a few songs not performed the previous week (notably “Ain’t It Strange,” one of the highlights of Radio Ethiopia). It also features a guest appearance by the Dalai Lama, whose 80th birthday arrives today, July 6, so it’s entirely appropriate that Smith and the crowd sing “Happy Birthday” to him while he’s presented with a cake.