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Hammersmith Apollo, London 15 November 2009
to think that it is now 25 years since Deep Purple reformed and over 40
since their original formation. Since that time many band members
have come and gone with vocalist Ian Gillan leaving only to come back and
the man in black disappearing with his minstrel flute and Jon Lord
retiring, handling over the ivories to Don Airey. Confused? If so,
then there is no need to read on.
It is fair
to say that in 2009 Ian Gillan hasn't got the scream he had as a younger
man hence we don't get 'Child In Time' anymore. Something that
Gillan has admitted himself - that he no longer has the range to do that
damage to his lungs on a nightly basis. Guitarist Steve Morse has
now been in the band since 1995 and has since made Purple into a entirely
Purple still credible? Well the answer to that is yes. Noone can
argue with the musicianship of this band. It's hardly surprising
that when Oasis recently pulled out of some European summer festivals Deep
Purple took their place and stole the thunder from trendy younger rock
bands like Kasabian who looked on in awe.
the fast and ferocious 'Highway Star' is a good way start a gig, stating
their intentions as to where they're heading. This song says
everything about the sound of Purple with high pitched vocals thumping
bass and keyboard solos as well as the driving guitar parts inter-twining
with Gillan's 'doodahing'.
surprised to hear 'Things I Never Said' still in the set as this was only
available on the bonus disc on their last album, but not as surprised when
the band tore into 'Not Responsible', a track that was originally only
available on the picture disc version of 'Perfect Strangers' (The
night before ,which I also attended ,the band opted for the bluesy 'Maybe
I'm A Leo').
This was by
no means a greatest hits show, something that sometimes older bands get
slated for. 'Wasted Sunsets' another 'Perfect Strangers track was
performed for the first time on this tour. Steve Morse's expert
guitar playing is crystal clear and fluent reaching new heights on
'Sometimes I Feel like Screaming' and the instrumental 'Well Dressed
song that was recorded even before Roger Glover and I joined the band''
says Gillan before launching into an instrumental jazzy 'Wring That Neck'
with Gillan accompanying on the bongoes. It was great to hear the
funky 'No One Came' again and the powerful 'The Battle Rages On' is
The Water' is always a joy to hear in the live setting with the crowd
participation. A standing ovation ensured.
With a new
album in the offering for the new year the Purple machine head keeps on
rolling and I'm happy for that.
Set list: Highway Star / Things I Never Said / Not Responsible /Strange
Kind Of Woman / Wasted Sunsets / Rapture Of The Deep / Fireball / Contact
Lost / Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming / Well Dressed Guitar / Wring That
Neck / No One Came / The Battle Rages On / Space Truckin' /Smoke On The
Water....encores ...Hush / Black Night
Ian Gillan interview (video)
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