North America reviews
Paramount Theatre, Seattle, USA
February 9, 2004
Saw Deep Purple last night at the Paramount in Seattle. If
you are on the fence about seeing them jump off the fence and go!
Overall fantastic. Probably one of the best sounding bands today from that era.
Ian struggled with his voice here and there but I'm amazed at the integrity
his voice still has.
I was a little worried about Don replacing Jon - until I heard a couple of songs.
As much as I hate to say this, he sounded better than Jon did on the last tour.
Bananas, (stupid name) is the most solid material from them in many years. It
translated very well live.
The thing I noted the most is that they truly seemed like they were having a
blast. Things don't last forever; see them!
Absolutely outstanding! As a drummer myself, I appreciate the
tightness and technical perfection of the band. Great mix between the old and
the new. I would have gone to the show if they'd only played the new stuff,
but having the "classics" in there really was the icing on the cake.
Fantastic job, guys!
It wasn't quite a sell-out, being a Monday night, but it was
a good-sized crown nonetheless. It was clearly an older, late-40s crowd - Ian
and the boys probably felt right at home.
As stated in the Orpheum Theater review, the Thin Lizzy opener was full
of holes. I mean, it seemed like they were playing well - but the mix was so
poor and overly loud that nobody could tell. Michael Lee's drums were brought
to the forefront - with good reason, he's not scared to pound those puppies,
and pound them well - but John Sykes' guitar could hardly be heard at all, and
the band's harmonic leads sounded muddled at best. Frankly, it got tiring trying
to hear them clearly. It was nice of Scott Gorham to pay a little tribute to
Phil Lynott, though.
As for Deep Purple's set - it was identical to the Orpheum set. And timed
just about exactly the same. IG's vocals are clearly not in shape yet - twice
he had to stop and cough during Woman From Tokyo, and he clearly had to build
up to certain screams, followed by rests after (resulting in lots of vocal gaps
during songs). He'll probably be in better range as the tour progresses, but
his was not what I'd call an "on night".
I must confess that during Highway Star I missed Blackmore's punches - though
I do admit it's the first time I've seen Morse live. But besides the Machine
Head run, I also confess I enjoyed immensely the solos by Morse (Contact Lost/Well
Dressed Guitar) and Airey (House of Pain). They were very original and kept
the ear in full smiles. Airey's keyboards were clearly pumped up for this show,
and sometimes drowned Morse out. Ian Paice was very competent, as usual - but
hardly got a nod for his efforts.
But on this night, nobody really cared. They welcomed
DP back to Seattle with open arms, and cheered loudly for everything, old and
new. A wonderful time was had by all.
It was refreshing to see Deep Purple in a setting that allowed
their sound to be as true to form as can be achieved in concert. Having traveled
to Salt Lake City to see them in July 2002 (because I didn't believe they would
ever come to the Northwest), it was gratifying to see them put on more of a
show, in a number of ways.
During the 2002 tour, Deep Purple was part of a three-bands-bill (Dio, DP, and
The Scorpions) and their set was merely one hour as they did not close the show.
They played to a big, sports arena 1/3 to 1/2 full in Salt Lake City and the
show was billed as more of a Scorpions show; as a co-headliner, Deep Purple
was barely mentioned in radio advertisements for the that show. And as one can
imagine, the sound quality in such a venue left much to be desired.
This time they were the headliner (as they should be) and the Paramount was
the perfect Seattle venue to witness the band's return to the Northwest. As
for any mention that the Northwest does not appreciate or support the band,
I hope the energy and enthusiasm the crowd displayed for the bands' efforts
last night layed any thought of that to rest.
I appreciated the varied setlist and it was awesome to see them play Machine
Head in its entirety.
There was some proximity to the setlist they played in 2002 but I thought this
set was much better and showcased more of the band's talents.
We didn't get to hear as much of a lengthy solo from Roger or Ian P., but Steve's
guitar was much clearer and concise in this venue. I imagine he has become quite
adept at getting that Fender to sound eerily reminiscent of Richie Blackmore.
And Ian G can still belt it out!
Having never heard a Jon Lord solo in person, I though Don's solo's sounded
very much like those of the "Made In Japan" era.
I'm glad they got the sound right for the DP set as I agree that Thin Lizy were
much too loud and the drums and bass were overbearing. It was much better to
see TL by themselves in a smaller venue (Showbox) where they did not have to
abbreviate their set as an opener.
It sure looked like a sell out to me, but I could be wrong
on that count. The energy of the crowd was very pumped up. It has been some
long years since the boys were here. Older crowd and sadly mostly male. My wife
and two friends, who had never experienced Purple live, was astounded by this.
That being said, everyone was revved up and friendly and in a party mood.
Purple seemed very happy and in good spirits. They seemed genuinely appreciative
of the crowd and their reception. It was very much a Deep Purple crowd. The
musicianship was at a high level and the boys seemed on for so early in the
Don certainly has fit right in with the group and added his special touch to
the proceedings. Ian's vocals were somewhat spotty, but on the whole were outstanding.
That he did Space Truckin' towards the end of the set was impressive. He did
cough several times, but no one seemed to mind. He seemed at ease and had a
good connection with the crowd.
Hearing the entire Machine Head album played song by song as on the original
album was outstanding. The only correction was the inclusion of When a Blind
Man Cries on the second side position. Ian said it was supposed to be there,
so that is where it was being placed. Lazy was outstanding and a highlight of
Also Steve on Contact / Well Dressed Guitar.
Seattle was treated to one of the outstanding shows of the year. It has been
much too long. Everyone walked out happy and buzzing about the band and how
good they were. I didn't hear one disappointed person.
(The Paramount needs to expand the bar and stop serving crap for beer. It is
sad that in a theater revamped by an ex Microsoftee to the tune of many millions
of dollars that they can't have an adequate bar or selection. When you pay $70
plus dollars for a ticket you want to have an enjoyable experience.)
Deep Purple proved that they are one of the greatest rock acts ever last night.
If you have a chance to see this show, don't miss it.