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Point Theatre, Dublin, Ireland
June 24, 2003

Photo by Bryan Greene

Highway Star
Knockin At Your Back Door
Woman From Tokyo
Speed King
Well Dressed Guitar
I Got your Number
Perfect Strangers
Smoke On The Water
Space Truckin

Black Night

After experiencing Wembley and Birmingham I did not hold out much hope of Purple being any better at Dublin. But I had my ticket, hotel and flight sorted so I chose to go and check it out anyway.
Skynyrd opened at 8.15pm and blew me away, the crowd was moshing at the front and everyone in the whole arena was screaming and joining in. This band are masters at crowd control. The Dublin crowd were literally shaking the balcony the energy and enthusiasim in the audience has to be experience to be believed.
Skynyrd got off on this and, in my opinion gave their performance of the tour.
The set was identical to previous dates but the feeling in the audience towards the band lifted it to another level. By half time I was gasping for a pint but totally exhilarated.
I was now also concerned for Purples performance. Just like for the past gigs. I have felt the audience just did not respond in the same way to Purple as they did to Skynyrd and like it or not a poor audience reaction doesnt bode well for a good band performance.
My seat was on at the back of the standing area directly behind the mixer and lighting desk. I had a perfect view.
The sound guy came up and placed the setlist on his desk right in front of me and I immediately noticed a couple of changes, I'm Alone was gone as was Mary Long, in their place we had Knocking at Your Back Door and Woman from Tokyo. These may be classics and not new or Morse era material but IMHO definitely preferable to the former numbers.
I was praying for a great performance from Purple and boy did I get it.
Purple were obviously up for the gig, Gillan was screaming like a banshee from the opening notes of Highway Star. Morse and Glover were all over the stage interacting and generally having a ball. Paice was driving everything on as usual (does this guy ever have an off day?). Dons playing shone through. He did a nice solo prior to Star Wars/Perfect Strangers and the audience contributed by raising lighters in the darkness for a very nice effect. (Very American). Gillan was a lot more talkative tonight with may praises for the audience and a few interesting Gillanisims
"The album is called Bananas, and it will be released when it is ripe."
The vibe was right ,the set list powerful it was a fantastic experience
The key to this whole gig was the audience involvement and support. They never let up the whole evening and before anyone says anything about age the cross section was from about 15 - 70 as far as I could see.
Purple played a stormer and finished around 11.40 with Gillan shouting "you are the best, its true, we will play here any time you want us" This brought a tremendous roar from the audience.
I left the gig with my faith restored and the experience of Wembley and Birmingham well and truly behind me.
Now off to the SECC....Come on Scotland lets show our Celtic brothers we know how to party too.....
Mike McBain

Only my second DP concert ever although I've been a fan for 25 years, but what a night!
First of all Lynyrd Skynyrd were superb. The perfect opener, they had the crowd singing, clapping and stamping. Although worthy of their 90mins or so, this did mean less time for DP - approx 90mins also.
DP took to the stage at just after 10pm with Highway Star, frantic. The new songs, 'Haunted' and ' I Got Your Number' sounded slick and not at all out of place (can't wait for the album). Everything else was there bar 'Child in Time' and my fav 'Strange kind of Woman' but no matter, Purple turned in a performance second to none, better than last year at the same venue. Gillan gave a lesson in how to be a front man. Relaxed, at ease and always in control. He looked as if he was enjoying every minute of it.
But to cap the whole night off perfectly, thanks to Phil Lynott's mum I got backstage to meet the band. They were very relaxed and generous with their time, Gillan is a gent, Steve Morse also came across as a really nice guy. They signed what ever we wanted and stood for as many photos as we liked.
So June 24, 2003 was a wonderful wonderful night, one I will never forget.
Thank you Deep Purple.
Ray Clifford

I went to see the show with my little brother. I had bought him a ticket for his birthday and it so was worth it!
I was suprised that Deep Purple had some bad reviews before they came to the Point because it's nearly two weeks later and still I can't get over how amazing the show was!
Lynyrd Skynyrd put on a fantastic show, they really knew how to get the crowd going, but Deep Purple just blew me away.
Anyway, as I'm not much of a writer I just want to say thanks for a great night and I look forward to your return to Dublin.
Lynda Keegan

This was my 16-year-old son's first rock gig and he loved it! But it was with some trepidation,after reading some of the not so complimentary reviews, that we started our 200 mile round trip to see Deep Purple for only the second time in Ireland. We were looking to forward to hearing the new tracks from "Bananas" and how Don Airey was fitting in with the band.
The night started with a magnificent set from Lynyrd Skynyrd who had the audience in the palms of their hands from start to finish of their set. A few comments from people around us that Purple would have to pull out all the stops to maintain or build on the crowd's enthusiasm.
We needn't have worried. Right from the opening notes of Highway Star to the final singalong of Black Night the band were to coin a phrase "SUPERB!"
I know that some people in earlier reviews expressed regret that there was no drum solo but Ian Paice, surely by now, has nothing to prove, both himself and Roger Glover were really tight and kept the show moving on.
Ian Gillan (as well as the rest of the band) seemed genuinely surprised and delighted with the enthusiastic audience reaction, but they earned that from the excellent, energetic and professional set they played.
Steve Morse is a truly unique talent and a magnificent guitarist as well as having a permanent infectious grin which endeared him to all. Don Airey was a revelation eliciting a lot of spontaneous applause from his virtuosity.
It was great to hear Knocking at Your Back Door as well as the new songs particularly Haunted. I look forward to the release of BANANAS.
We hope that the two bands either together or separately return to Ireland in the near future.
Tony Bannon

Mind Blowing. Even better than last year, Gillan was on song, they were all very tight.
Anybody thinking of going to one of the upcoming gigs, don't think, buy the ticket, mooney well spent.
Gary Whyte

I've read most of the other reviews of this tour and I must be missing something because I couldn't see what all the fuss was about with Skynyrd! My wife and I were both of the opinion that while Dixie's finest may well have interacted with the crowd a wee bit better, Purple won hands down in the musicianship stakes - give me the latter ANYDAY! My missus was just bowled over by Purple and (like me) has been spreading the word to anyone and everyone ever since!
John McEnvoy - read John's full review

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