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Deep Purple in Lahr
[ d e e p P u r . p l e ) The Highway Star

From: slcr01@gtn.com (Christian Rutz)
Newsgroups: alt.music.deep-purple
Subject: Deep Purple in Lahr
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 1997 05:31:20 +0100

Hello all,
I just returned from the Open Air in Lahr (it is 4:30 am mest right now).

For the people holding their breath:

Imho it was an excellent concert.

First i'd like to point aut, that I didn't have taken any notes, so I have to rely on my memory and I may get some stuff wrong (but I think, Doug or Stathis will be able to give a more accurate report later).

Deep Purple started one hour late (23:00 instead of 22:00), the weather was fine, the audience from the beginning in a good mood.

During the stagesetup the stagecrew had some problems with one of Steve monitors, I coulddn't exactly figuring out, what problem was.

Stagesetup was as follows (pov is from the audience):
Ian Paice and Jon Lord in the Background, Ian right from the middle, Jon left from the middle

Steve in the left wing, Gillan in the middle, Roger on the right.
In front of Jon's keyboards were Gillan's congas

             Jon        Ian
        Steve      Ian       Roger

During the concert, Ian walked the whole length of the stage, Steve sometimes walked in the middle of the stage and one time Steve walked over to Roger and they performed a "Status Quo-ritual" (both standing side by side and moving synchron).
At the last encore Roger walked over to Steve and they did the same thing again.

The setlist (as good as I can remember):

  • Hush
  • Fireball
  • Into the fire
    Those three were played without a break, with some short solo from Jon and Steve and some interaction between both of them
  • Ted the mechanic
  • Black night
  • Bloodsucker
  • Cascades
  • Woman from Tokyo
  • No one came
  • When a blind man cries
  • Smoke on the water
  • Speed King

Here ended the regular set


  • Perfect Strangers
  • Highway Star

Total playing time: 1:30 (well, more or less)

My (humble) opinion:
It was a blast.

All of them were actually in a good mood, we had some autstanding solos from Steve (and not only fast ones, the opening to Wabmc was brilliant), the interaction between Jon and Steve and Ian and Steve remembers of the best times of the MarkII-formation.

Otoh, if you look at the songs, you will only find two songs from _I_, the rest are all classics from Mark II (okay, and Hush).
Part of this was surely caused by the late beginning of the concert (originally they were scheduled from 22:00 to 23:30 and they surely could have played until midnight), still I would have preferred to hear more of the new stuff (during stagesetup they tuned an acoustic guitar, so I had hoped for The Aviator).

Maybe next time.

No word and no song from the new album (another of my hopes), so will have to wait for that.

Hm, what else:

Classical Quotes: Only thing I could make out was a short piece of a waltz (maybe 5 seconds). I think Jon played during one of his solos something I heard before (Gemini Suite??), but I didn't recognize it.

Gllianisms: Lots of them, but the only one I can recall is the introduction to Speed King: "I'm sure you know what I'm going to tell you, but I do it anyway. The next song is a lullaby, a song which I sing every night for my daughter when I put her to sleep (laughter from the audience) I really do it! (Jon plays some childrens song) Ian acts like he has a child in his arms and is rocking it to sleep (although imho the child would only get seasick :-)

Sound: Sound was good and not too loud (I was 20 meters away from stage and I still can hear) but not brilliant. Lots of bass, but I didn't hear a lot of Paice (except the bassdrum and during his too short solo). Steve had some problems with one monitor which was apparently not working.
Near the end of the concert Big Ian said something to Steve and pointed to his throat, only thing I can think of is that he had a problem with his voice, because it was right after they showed some nice voice/guitar-work. (Some blasphemic question: Why does Deep Purple need any singer at all?? The audience usually know all the texts and sings along anyway.........)

And: As usual Big Ian had some problems with the lyrics of Highway Star ;-)


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