This performance begins even before the song starts, when one of my favorite rock and roll moments occurs. Singer Barrie Masters, surveying the front of the stage, senses something not quite right, and then gets dismissive:
Move all these chairs, don't want 'em in 'ere! Get up, move 'em all. Can't have chairs in the audience, they get in the way. Get 'em out of here!!The front of the room cleared for dancing, pogo-ing, and general slamming around, the band rips into "Gloria." It's a fantastic moment, and sounds epochal, practically historic: in eight seconds, one era ends and another begins. That's as long as it takes, sometimes. Feels that way this on this night, anyway. Sitting, that's finished; get up and jump around, 1977's almost here.
And listen to Masters—with Dave Higgs on guitar, Paul Gray on bass, Lew Lewis on harmonica, and Steve Nicol on drums, churning behind him—as he hollers "Satisfaction!" over and over at the song's close, so close to Johnny Rotten's heralding "No Future!" that it could be one transparency laid over another. The Stones roughed up. Pub Rock. Punk Rock. Rock and Roll. The tyranny of taxonomy. What's in a name? Clear those chairs and turn it up.
EP sleeve pic via 45cat