Why Didn’t The Stone Roses Play ‘Beautiful Thing’ And Five Other Big Questions From The Etihad Shows

The Stone Roses played the same set four times from Wednesday to Sunday last week, performing before almost a quarter of a million people total in the 60,000-capacity Etihad Stadium in Manchester. All of those people probably left the gigs with a feeling of communal joy, but they may also have left with some questions. Here are six things we were thinking after it was all over.

1. Why didn’t they play ‘Beautiful Thing’?

There are three viable options here:
1. They’re being perfectionists and they don’t think it’s ready to play live yet
2. They’re making fans wait until their next run of gigs
3. Ian hasn’t learnt the words yet
We would still respect them if they cited any of these reasons.

2. Why wasn’t there any other new material?

Given that the band unveiled two new singles (‘All For One’ and ‘Beautiful Thing’) in the run-up to the shows, and given we know they were recently in the studio recording what’s presumed to be an album, you might think fans would have been treated to something totally fresh. But then, big stadium gigs aren’t exactly the place to play your difficult new opus. We’re still holding out for at least an EP, but there are plenty of album rumours out there, though – see below.

3. Are they going to play any more gigs?

…as well as their festival dates this summer, that is. If the rumours are right and there is more music – then probably, yeah. It’d be criminal not to play new stuff live. Just don’t expect them to announce more gigs any time soon…

4. Has Ian Brown been practicing?

Some fans were pretty unforgiving about Brown’s voice – commonly regarded as one of his less significant talents – but actually he sounded pretty good for much of the set, even after all this time.


5. Have Manchester’s shops now sold out of bucket hats?

So many bucket hats. If you were in the middle of the crowd, whatever direction you looked in you could see dozens of the things. Try and count them in the shot below. Go on.

Top night last night seeing #thestoneroses #flares #music #etihad #buckethat

A photo posted by Nick Owens (@nick_o_91) on

Here is a bucket hat-related joke for you, too.

6. When Oasis reform will they play the Etihad?

Ha. Don’t tell us the thought hadn’t crossed your mind though. The Etihad Stadium is, after all, home to Man City FC. Look how happy Liam Gallagher was to be in town:

Take it a little bit more seriously, though, with a bit of maths. Noel has said he’d do another Oasis gig for £20,000,000. The Etihad holds 60,000 people. To fit Noel’s fee, he’d need to receive £333.33 from each face value ticket. That’d mean unimaginably expensive tickets. Ok, it’s unlikely, but not impossible.