GILLAN Live Wembley 17th December 1982 Angel Air SJPCD152 (2004)
The last ever gig by Gillan now released on CD. The band didn’t know this
was to be their last gig together as Ian Gillan was supposedly taking
time-off for a throat infection but in fact turned up as the singer in Black
Sabbath not long after! The band Gillan were doing well in the album and
single charts at the time and playing arena-sized venues. The line-up was
Ian Gillan on vocals, John McCoy on bass, Mick Underwood on drums, Colin
Towns on keys and the recently recruited Janick Gers (ex-White Spirit) on
At over 70 minutes you get your money’s worth here with a mix of Gillan
and deep Purple material. The band was on form with classics belting out
like ‘Black Night’, ‘M.A.D.’ (where Colin Towns and Janick Gers let fly) and
the Beatles cover ‘Helter Skelter’ (who remembers Vow Wow’s version of
this?). Of course ‘Smoke On The Water’ is here and it’s time for Gillan to
employ a series of bizarre vocal sounds! Interesting to speculate what the
band would have done had Gillan not disbanded the group.
Gillan went onto Sabbath and Purple, plus some more solo albums; McCoy
later appeared in Mammoth and McCoy; Gers is of course now in Iron Maiden;
Underwood played sessions and Colin Towns has a very successful career as a
soundtrack composer (just check the credits on UK TV programmes).
This is a worthy addition to a Gillan/Purple fans collection, with good sound
quality throughout plus extensive sleeve notes.