[% META title = 'Tour Reviews' %]

Esoterics for later...

On Saturday, Deep Purple showed an appreciative audience why they are the legends of heavy rock. Opening with Fireball, the band tore into their set with gusto. Dressed in white, Ian Gillan led the charge as the band raced along at breakneck speed. New man Don Airey proved that he was up to the challenge of filling some very large shoes. His playing was impeccable as he traded solos with the ever reliable Steve Morse. Ian Paice propelled the music forward in a way only he can while Roger Glover provided solid foundation.

Yes, from the opening note it was quite apparent that the audience was into the band and the band was into the audience. A good time was had by all. Superb indeed.

1) Fireball
2) Woman From Tokyo
3) Ted The Mechanic
4) Lazy
5) Well-Dressed Guitar
6) Knocking At Your Back Door
7) Black Night
8) Organ solo/Perfect Strangers
9) Speed King (w/drum solo)
10) Smoke On The Water

Highway Star

As can be seen from the set list, there were no real surprises. Because there were three bands playing one hour sets, I believe that Deep Purple decided that they had better stick with a set full of rockers and leave the more obscure/esoteric tunes for another time. Too bad. I was longing for Mary Long. Still, they did get rid of the cover tune section before Smoke On The Water. (It was a neat idea that wore out its welcome.) Yet, they still managed to fit in some Gary Glitter during Black Night. Obviously, these guys are music fans too.

Highlights and other notes
1) Ian Paice's drum solo was great. The man can play. In fact, he played like a man possessed all night.
2) Steve Morse's technique was as fluid and precise as ever. His touch is gold.
3) Don Airey's performance let everyone know that the keyboard chair in Deep Purple was left in good hands. Good job, Don.
4) Ian Gillan was in good form and as un-rock star-like as ever.
5) Roger Glover was wearing what looked like a pirate outfit. I wonder if he is familiar with the Pittsburgh Pirate baseball team. Well, he batted 1000 on Saturday night.

David Misciagna

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