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A Saurcerful Of Purple – Katowice

That was my 3rd DP gig. I saw them in 2003 in the same venue, and then half a year later in Warsaw. It’s hard to tell which gig was the best. All of them were absolutely amazing.

“Spodek” (“Saucer” – named after it’s UFO-like shape) was (almost) full this friday. Hardly any seat empty and the standing area was also full with people. I came a little bit late (during the 3rd song of the support band) and therefore couldn’t get to the very first row, but anyway I managed to stand about 2-3 metres behind the first row, to the left of the stage (from the audience’s point of view) so Roger was the guy who was performing amost right in front of me.

SBB (polish progressive rock band known all over the world among the older fans of such music) was the support band. Although many younger fans surely didn’t know much about them (hell.. i am 23 myself, but i’m a strange case and i prefer bands from 70’s 😉 ) they went through their set with energy, feel and they got a lot of aplause from us.

Then the lights went out and we could see the video on both screens (well, actually it was hard to see it clearly for us right in front of the stage, because those screens were almost in the same line as we were, but still, it was possible to see something). I knew the most probable setlist before so it was of no surprise to me that they started off with “Pictures of Home’. IMO it’s a great opener, maybe even better than HS. As usual on this tour, the first part of the gig was put together of new tracks and some oldies that were not played for some time before. The link between Pictures of Home and Things I Never Said was great. I thought they were playing some extended outro to Pictures and it turned out a second later that it is already the next track. The song itself is a good one, but as i have heard it for the first time, i don’t remember much of it at the moment (i will have to get some bootleg’s to get to know it better).

Some new and some rare tracks followed (wrong man, living wreck, ted the mechanic, mary long) and then we reached the first highlight of the gig – Rapture Of The Deep! This song is absolutely fantastic. I think that this song will soon get a status similar to Pictures Of Home or Sometimes I Feel Like Screamin’, that is a classic Purple song. Before time began is also great but i’m not sure if it’s good live song. At least for a hard rock gig. But it was received great anyway.

Then the second important moment of the evening. I was waiting for it, i must admit. ‘Contact Lost’ is my favourite track song from ‘bananas’ and it almost makes my eyes wet everytime i hear it live. This friday was no exception. ian dedicated it to those who died in an accident in Katowice a couple of weeks ago when a roof collapsed straight into a big hall killing over 60 people attending some kind of a pigeon exposition. CL was connected with Steve’s cosmic solo and then it turned into “Well-dressed guitar” – my another favourite from the bananas era (although not released).

Lazy was a bit short, but we can’t expect them to go back to 70’s and play 20 minutes of solos. Don reinvented his organ solo a little bit for this tour, although he played again some excerpts from Chopin, Star Wars and Polish National Anthem. But the ‘adventurous, cosmic’ part was something new and it went great. Perfect Strangers for me the biggest highlight of the gig. I absolutely love this track and everytime i see the band, they play a breathtaking version of it.

Then for a while, we came back to the latest album. Instead of Junkyard blues, which was played during some recent gigs, we had to Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye 😉 It’s not one of my favourite racks from ROTD, but it’s definitely not bad and was played with a lot of energy. And them the hit-parade began. Space Truckin’ – Highway Star – Smoke On The Water with some fragments of Stairway To Heaven (i was not surprised but some people were completely astonished haha) and one more track (possibly one of ac/dc’s songs but don’t remember right now)… SOTW was (as always) sang… ekhm.. SCREAMED! by the whole audience (c. 9500 people IMO)… then the band disappeared, but of course they returned and played Hush and Black Night. BN was played without a Rn’R medley before but this may be because people were singin’ the melody from black night already and so no medley appeared. It was the same situation as 2 years ago in Katowice. Steve was playing with the audience and i can tell you all that we were bloody loud 😉 Then they said their farewells and left the stage going straight into that box again 😉

+ Great form of all 5 of them.

+ New songs played with a lot of energy and received very well by the audience

+ Some old classics played in a slightly refreshed way – new intro to HS, Stairway To Heaven before ‘Smoke’, Pictures of home linked with Things I Never Said etc

+ Great visualisations; puttin’ 2 screens was a great idea and some close-ups were brilliant, also some great images during contact lost or smoke on the water.

+ Great atmosphere – many teenagers, but also some rock veterans in their 50’s or even 60’s 😉 maybe the singin’ was not as loud as it usually is in Poland, because the older guys are not always eager to sing with us, but on the other hand, i don’t have to worry that i might get squeezed to death my some stupid people in my age that have way too much energy. With the average of age going up, it’s much safer in front of the stage 😉

– the only thing that i can put here is the setlist.. it’s not that it’s bad, but it would be nice to hear sometimes i feel like screaming, anya, tha battle rages on or when a blindman cries instead of e.g ted the mechanic or hush (which is a great song but i already heard that a couple of times)… also ‘clearly quite absurd’ or ‘money talks’ instead of ‘kiss tomorrow goodbye’ and ‘before time began’ could be nice… and i don’t even dream of hearing some mk3 of mk4 stuff (my fav. DP period)… well actually I think it’s a good idea not to perform those… with all respect to Ian – i can’t image myself him singing Burn or Stormbringer 😉 I’m gonna have to see Whitesnake or Glenn solo to hear those 🙂

But don’t get me wrong. The gig was amazing anyway even with this setlist, it’s just that every person attending a gig has always their favourite setlist somewhere in their head and that one was not any near my favourite one 😉 but that’s the only thing i could think of that could have been better. I hope it was not their last gig in Poland. I’m sure that they will come to us should there be another european tour, but they are not 20 anymore and we never know which tour could be their last. well.. i hope this one isn’t 🙂

a big eeeeaaaaaaaaaaoooouuuu to all people that were in Katowice on Friday. They rocked and we did as well 😉

Jakub “Bizon” Michalski

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