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Ireland & UK 2002 reviews  

Tears In Time

It's 11.37pm and we just got back from the Apollo. It was one of those gigs, good parking spec, short queue... Only to find we're on the front row right in front of Steve Morse, can it get any better??? Well, yes. We saw most of the support act, The Planets. If you are reading this review and are going to a later show then check these out. They are brilliant. If you are not going, then their album Classical Graffiti is out on Feb 18. They play a fusion of rock and classical music which works great, although I accept they wont be everyone's cup of tea.

Purple came on at just after 8.30pm.

This is the greatest Deep Purple show I have ever seen. The sound was superb, the atmosphere was immense and because of the Apollo layout (no orchestra pit) it was very intimate. I wont regurgitate the set list as it's been done in other reviews and it didn't change much. The new song Up The Wall was excellent, very funky dare I say with some great hooks from Steve.

The atmosphere on stage was electric, as we now expect. The guys are 100% enjoying their work and it makes for a great spectacle. My fiancée, who has only previously seen DP at the Albert Hall and isn't the world's biggest fan, was smiling from ear to ear all night, and especially happy when Steve kept smiling back at her!!!!

The highlight of the show for me was Child In Time. When Jon played the intro I actually cried. Say no more.

IG came in too early with the vocals on Lazy, but so what? He was on form tonight and even surfed across the stage on an amp trolley at one point. Other highlights included Paicey's solo (which included a one handed drum roll), Perfect Strangers which is one of the greatest live songs and the duel between Steve and Jon in Speed King.

I must also apologise to the guy next to me who told me he nearly got one of Steves plectrums, when I managed to catch three... If there was a low point to the gig it would be the realisation of the impending retirement of a certain Mr Lord. His performance tonight was of a man a third his age and he seemed a lot more out front soundwise than in recent tours, but I cant help feeling he wont tour for much longer. I hope I'm wrong. As for Roger, well he doesn't change, apart from getting better and better.

I have to finish by saying that, as a life long Ritchie Blackmore fan, he couldn't possibly have ever been part of the Deep Purple I saw tonight. Steve has taken the band to heights Ritchie could never have. I respect Ritchie for what he has done but in my opinion Steve Morse (and Mk7) IS Deep Purple.

And I've got to do it all over again at the Liverpool Empire tomorrow, shucks!!!!!! [It's a hard life... Rasmus]

Ian Dunbar

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