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Sadio San Vito, Cosenza, Italy
June 6, 2003

Highway Star
Mary Long
I'm Alone
Pictures of Home
Speed King
Steve Morse solo
I've Got Your Number
Don Airey solo
Perfect Strangers
medley* / Smoke on the Water
Space Truckin'

Black Night

* incl. Back in Black (AC/DC), Little Wing (Jimi Hendrix), Whole Lotta Love (Led Zeppelin), La Grange (ZZTop), Stairway to Heaven guitar solo (Led Zeppelin), Sweet Home Alabama (Lynyrd Skynyrd)

Cosenza is a small town in Southern Italy and Deep Purple are THE LEGENDS OF ROCK: When I read about this upcoming concert in my town, I was really amazed!
A not so great number of people concentrated in a small section of San Vito Stadium and below the stage created a magic atmosphere. There was many grey haired people and parents and children together and this was beautiful.
At the start of 'Highway Star', I had chills.
Ian Gillan's voice is a like a scratch while Paice' drum is always like a fist in the stomach. [We assume you mean this nicely. ;^) Rasmus]
Don Airey gave us some amusing moments, passing from classical piano to Star Wars theme and a local song called 'Calavrisella' (!).
In my opinion, Steve Morse is the 'stranger' of the group but he is a great guitarist.
The 'Smoke on the water' riffs gave us minutes of intense emotion.
At the exit, all teenagers ran to buy a t-shirts to remember a great concert for a band still in its youth.
I'm happy to have had the chance to see a live Deep Purple concert in my life.
Mimmo Viggiani

It was a beautiful friday night, wonderful weather as we have often on this time in south of Italy, an audience extremely hungry for rock: how couldn't be a great show?
And so it was!
The band hit the stage at 9.40 PM (no Pretenders or other support tonight) and played for about 95 minutes, incl. encores. The sound was REALLY good from the very beginning, loud and clear, maybe just Steve guitar sometimes overwhelmed the other instruments, not a big deal anyway... The band was tight and in very relaxed mood and it seemed actually appreciate the audience reaction, that BTW was absolutely WILD!
Gillan was in good voice and he went up and up since first Highway Star notes til the very high pitched scream that ended both Black Night and the show.
Glover and Paice, despite some little mistake here and there, were the usual perfect machine.
Don Airey confirmed he was the polite performer I remembered since Rainbow times, and he was also very amusing including in his solo, between Mozart and Star Wars theme, *Calabresella Mia*, an old folk number from my country.
And finally Steve Morse: what to say about him? He is a fantastic musician and a great guy, always smiling and carrying fun to the audience and playing unbelievable patterns at the same moment, but unfortunately he's still not that man in black that we old Purple fans have stuck in our heart - but that's another story. Anyway, hats off to Steve, he's great!
The highlights of the show was the first four songs sequence (a great Steve solo on Mary Long, a wonderful I'm Alone fading into Pictures of Home, like a unique road trip in emptiness...), a storming Speed King version (with great jam from Don and Steve) and the final part of the show (before encores) with the astonishing medley (that I'd call *Great moments in sport* from Steve Morse); fantastic Zeppelin citation including the Stairway to Heaven almost full guitar solo tonight, the crowd just went C-R-A-Z-Y from this point) that introduced Smoke on the
Water and Space Truckin killer versions.
I really appreciated the Fireball version during the encores, that despite some speed troubles inside (it seemed to me that was a real unplanned encore the band decided to play to thank the cheerful audience: thanks a lot guys!) was stunning and loud as ever.
And finally, the new songs from the upcoming album, that according to a funny Gillan is going to be called *My stomach has malaria*, or something like that (cheers, Ian!):
Haunted is a ballad with a nice refrain, very poppish, actually, and airplay seeking; I've got your number is a mid-tempo rocker, with a weird fusion style (sure Steve wrote most of this one). Hard to make an idea about the new album from these, but this first bite was enough to enhance my doubts about the Lord missing from songwriting ... anyway, we'll see (or we'll listen, better)...
Bottom line about the show: I came back home very satisfied; the guys still know their deal, and with legendary songs like these and great musicianship as their, you can't fail!
Rock on!
Giuseppe Serrao

I am 28 years old and I live in Sicily: from Siracusa (the town I live in) to Cosenza it is about 400 km, but the call is very strong, and now I am in front of the gates of S. Vito stadium, together with lots of people, talking about Deep Purple and their glory. A great hard rock concert in the south of Italy is a rare event, and I am very excited, because I am going to see the legend on stage, just before my eyes!
A vaste range of generations are present: from the fans of the seventies, white - haired, to the new fans, teenagers, and even some family (father, mother, and a little girl...I know you prefer Ricky Martin, baby, but I ensure you that Purple, though they don't appear on MTV, are infinitely superior, and the proof is the "Pavarotti and friends" concert). This is undoubtedly magic!
The gates open at 19.30: the stadium begins to fill, and people start to sing. Many people are near the dream of their life, an unexpected fortune, a great joy to tell to relatives and friends.
At 21.30, in front of about 6000 anxious fans, Deep Purple begin their show with Highway Star, and the audience explode, singing word after word. They continue alternating historic pieces like Pictures of Home, Smoke on the Water, Speed King, with more recent songs as Perfect Strangers, and with new pieces that will appear on the new album (Haunted, I've Got Your Number): the response of the public is satisfying, though the oldest songs are logically preferred.
Between a song and the other, Ian Gillan sometimes leaves the stage, allowing the solo intermezzo of Don Airey: the audience remains amazed seeing his performance, between fast, mozartian passages to the piano and happy popular songs. Then he performs the "Star Wars" theme, and the end is a wonderful sound of distorted hammond, similar to Jon Lord's past performances.
Very spectacular is the show of Steve Morse, too: he is sure, the master of the stage. He smiles to the public, excited from withering solos and improvisations in a seventies style, with incredible technique. He performs some covers, as Back in Black, Stairway to Heaven and Whole Lotta Love, with the subsequent approval of the audience.
Morse is excellently supported by Roger Glover and Ian Paice, as always shining examples of technique, strenght and devotion to the instruments: they are still granitic, as the time doesn't pass.
It is fundamental to remember duets between instruments, the continous challenge of Hammond and guitar to surpass one each other, at always increasing speeds: this is the spirit of the challenge, so loved by Jon Lord.
Ian Gillan has a duet with Steve Morse, too: he is still a great singer, that involves the crowd, and it always responds with great ovations. Gillan screams again and again that the audience is "fantastic", "wonderful", "superb": he is satisfied seeing a public adoring the band (perhaps this doesn't happen in the cities where Purple play more often).
The show terminates with Space Truckin', but when Deep Purple return on stage for the second part, they devastate us with three devasting songs: Hush, Fireball and Black Night!
At 23.30 the show terminates, and people rise for a standing ovation of about two minutes. I hope they will return in the future, because the southern fans still need their favourite band, which is visibly proud to have offered a great emotion to a large number of fans, who have waited for this concert for more than 20 years: a wonderful concert, an immortal emotion, a legendary band.
Giuliano Latina

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