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Ireland & UK 2002 reviews  

Monologues and amusing quips

The blistering sound of Purple launching into action with Woman From Tokyo had me grinning from ear to ear. Gillan plainly had a bad cough and there was clearly problems reaching the higher notes. However this was the best concert I've ever seen by a long margin. Superbly tight - so relaxed and smiley that they were talking and joking as they were playing.

Black Night was suprisingly early in the set. When A Blind Man Cries was met with a near standing ovation. The strobe and lasers during Perfect Stranger were startling. No One Came (one of my personal faves) was superb - Gillan explained that this song had been overanalysed in the past but the lyrics were tongue-in-cheek. Fools was breathtaking, especially the reprisal of the riff which was so much bigger than the record.

Jon Lord was superb as normal with lots of amusing keyboard quips to accompany Gillans monologues.

Playing the drums in a band myself, Ian Paice exceeded even my expectations and I was grinning like a fool as he started his solo. A one handed snare roll faster than the speed of light. I'm now thinking of giving up the drums... Alas, I didn't manage to catch one of his drum sticks but I did hold one. For more than two hours they proved that they're so far ahead of the rest that it hurts!

The decades they've been together enable the band to read each other so instintively that it was a joy to behold. The only mistake I noticed was Gillan starting another chorus of Hush when he wasn't supposed to - but this was met with smiles from the band.

I was surprised by the lack of Abandon material but the set-list included all my faves - even things like Mary Long. Although I'd have loved to have seen Flight Of The Rat.

A great great gig.

Gavin Bartlet

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