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Chicago was something else

After reading the other review of Chicago, I sat back and said to myself – what show was this guy at because it certaintly was not the same Deep Purple show I saw..

First let me say something about the openers Supagroup. These guys put on a great show.. They played rock and roll the way the new bands of today have forgotten to play it. They used their influences (Van Halen, AC/DC, and of course a little hint of Zep here and there) but made a sound of their own – mind you: used not copied.

The “baby brother” lead guitarist (his name escapes me) just wailed. These guys did something that up and coming ‘rock’ bands don’t do anymore, they played rock and roll, not growling into a microphone and calling it singing.

No theatrics, or 9 thousand tattoos trying to look like tough guys, just straight old school played in a way that has long been forgotten. Keep working guys, because I think with enough exposure you will be huge.

Now on to Deep Purple and anyone who has been reading reviews from other shows pretty much knows the setlist so I will skip that part of it..

First was location and that was close enough to the stage to be able to shake hands with Ian Gillan (thank you, by the way). When they hit the stage it was just incredible – very very tight and the sound was great. There was no distortion at all. If I had to make one bad remark on the sound the only thing would be that on occassion the bass was up just a little bit too much but having said that I was also right in front of Glover for the whole show and that had everything to do with it.

As for the song selection, sure they played all the classics. It was great to hear Strange Kind of Woman again and it was the first time I had seen them play The Battle Rages On so that was a treat too.

And no, there wasn’t that much from the Morse era – but in my opinion I feel the band is doing this simply because in general the fans have turned away from DP, which is obvious by the fact that they had to cancel Monday’s show due to lack of sales.

When you ask your local radio station to play something more recent from Purple they ignore you and play Smoke on the Water – oh wait I actually heard for the first time on radio Speed King. But again, they wouldn’t play anything new(er). Rhis is a band that deserves to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but people keep ignoring the fact that they are still around and still making great music.

Here’s an idea: How about we stop the ‘if only Blackmore would come back’ talk? Ritchie has been gone for about 14 years now. Let it go! OK, I’m not kidding anyone, sure I’d love to see Ritchie back too but it won’t happen. And I’d sure hate to be in Steve Morse’s shoes. It has to be very tiring by now after all these years to still keep getting compared to Blackmore. Two different people. Two different styles, both unique and great in their own right. Enough said, move on.

I’d much rather see the band as I did Sunday night – getting along smiling and interacting with the crowd as opposed to going through the motions with an attitude of ‘OK, we can play the big stadiums again but will our guitar player be in a mood and throw water at a camera?’ (Just watch the Come Hell or High Water DVD to know what I’m talking about).

One last thing and I’d like to comment on: Is it just me or has Ian Gillan lost a lot of weight? Hopefully everything is OK and he is just skinnier than usual.

My advice to even the casual DP fan – don’t miss this tour because they are playing just as good as they ever have and having fun doing it. Considering it took them two years to be able to get to the States on this tour, who knows what will happen next time, because God forbid that the radio stations would say ‘hey, here is some new Deep Purple’ and try and get them the exposure they need and deserve!


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