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UK reviews 2002 (rescheduled)

Marriage made in... Purple

Finally the day for my fourth Deep Purple gig had arrived!

At 9.35 DP hit the stage with a cracking Fireball. Gillan was in excellent form and Purple sounded great. Then Woman From Tokyo which was very good, and the first real highlight was Mary Long. Steve’s solo in the middle was just brilliant. Great performance on this one. Ted followed and Deep Purple once again rocked us!

Time for the second highlight, Lazy. Glover played great things, I was shocked. Airey proved once again that he is best possible replacement for Lord. The Well Dressed Guitar was very good and Airey was excellent on this one When A Blind Man Cries is next and Steve was great. Gillan sang very well on this one.

Time for Space Truckin' and after the little drum intro Steve once again played a great solo. Another highlight, no doubt. It was the first time that I heard this song live.

Don did a solo including Difficult To Cure, ehh sorry, Beethoven’s Ninth, and some famous Greek songs that lead us into Perfect Strangers. This song is the favourite of the Greek audience and there is panic into the arena! Great performance.

At the end of Perfect Strangers Stathis Panagiotopoulos [Our ever-present favourite Greek! ;^) Rasmus] with a another guy came on stage. He excused for cutting the gig and said this guy‘s girlfriend is in the audience - and the guy asked her to marry him! She said yes and the band played a song about marriage and then Speed King.

Glover’s solo was amazing, Paice’s too. Paice was great throughout the gig. They played high School Hop, It’s Now Or Never and two more old rock'n'roll songs that I have never heard on any recording. The last big highlight of the gig.

Steve’s riff raff was very good including Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Animals and Stones’ Honky Tonk Woman (is this the right name?) with a few lyrics by Gillan and more songs. Gillan’s mistake in Smoke was the only one in the gig.

The band left and returned with an excellent Hush, a very good Black Night and closed the set with Highway Star.

The performance was very good and this year DP were better than last year. It seems that they have become a better team and Airey feels more comfortable now. Gillan can still scream great

After the end of the concert I found a backstage pass (Thanks you-know-who, I will always remember it!) and I met Glover. I got autographs and a photograph with him. Amazing experience! Too bad that the others didn’t come, but it doesn’t matter.

Now I will have to complain a bit. First of all about the set list. I want something more adventurous. And from last year the only differences were Space Truckin' and Fireball instead of Fools and No One Came. Anyway, after the new album (Gillan said that they will be recording it during the winter) I hope this will change. And where was the crowd? Only 4000 people for Deep Purple? Last year the same venue was sold out! Anyway, I think that two gigs in the same city caused this and the fact that they played here last year.

The concert was great. I can’t say that this was the best DP gig I have witnessed, since I saw them in 2000, but certainly it was the second best. I hope that the rain which is strong at the moment will stop soon and we will be able to seen them again tonight.

See you again guys and thanks for this great experience.

Panos Papapanagou

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