[ d e e p P u r . p l e ) The Highway Star

Tour Review, Sept. 13 & 14, Mexico City

Here is my review, I hope you post it.

Deep Purple had two successful presentations here in Mexico. The first one had an attendance of almost 10,000 people and the second one of about 8,000. They played with the Orquesta Sinfónica de las Américas conducted by Paul Mann. Ronnie Dio performed as a guest (as did Miller Anderson, but only on the second night).

Here is the setlist:

"Concerto for Group and Orchestra" - The first night I felt the orchestra started in a hesitant way, the second night they were much more confident. It was a pity that, especially on the first night, some pseudo-rockers started shouting and whistling when the orchestra was playing the slower and more delicate parts of the "Concerto". Big Ian was so angry that when he finished singing his part on the second movement, he left the stage.

"Pictured Within" (played only on the second night) - What a beautiful piece of music, but my rocker 'friends' again spoiled the performance with their hysterical yells. Miller Anderson even had to shout "shut the fuck up" and got a standing ovation from the entire audience. I want the band to have my apologies for the behaviour of my fellow countrymen. As an explanation, not an excuse, I would say that in my country heavy metal fans alway act like rebels and they only appreciate head-banging music. The lack of culture in these individuals is evident, but what can I do...

"Sitting In A Dream" - Ronnie Dio took the stage and was received with a huge ovation. He really has a good voice. On the second night he came onstage with a burgundy glass of red wine.

"Love Is All" - Great performance by the whole band, especially Dio. The part I like the best is the guitar solo which reminds me of German folk music.

"Fever Dreams" - This is a new song written by Dio, it is really heavy and sounds like a future classic.

"Rainbow In The dark" - What a classic song from the "Holy Diver" album. Dio left the stage with a great ovation and was shaking hands with many fans who were shouting "Dio, Dio, Dio..."

"Wring That Neck" - This instrumental was introduced by Lord. On the second night he thanked the audience for listening to his "Concerto" with "your hearts" because they behaved much better on this occasion. It's a shame that on the second night, at the very beginning of the show, Jon had to come out and explain what it was all about and 'warn' the audience that there would be slow and quiet parts in the "Concerto". This speech was given in order to avoid all the annoying yells that had happened the night before.

Wonderful performance by Paice, who was introduced by Lord as "one of the greatest rock drummers." (I do not agree, he certainly is the greatest, indeed he would put most jazz drummers to shame with this interpretation of the old Purple instrumental.)

"Fools" - An unexpected highlight. It was beautifully performed, with a really nice solo by Steve 'Smiley' Morse. This song has a special power, its middle section reminds me of the old old jamming days of Purple, with a "Mandrake Root" like rhythm.

"Ted The Mechanic" - This one pumped up the audience, many danced along with its grunge-like sound. I consider it a classic already.

"Watching The Sky" - It's heavy and powerful, with Ian's voice in great shape. Got a great response from the audience.

"Sometimes I feel Like Screaming" - On the first night the orchestra played a nice introduction, but on the second night they played only a short one, very similar to the RAH version. Steve again pleased everyone with his wonderful performance on this one.

"Pictures Of Home" - There was a nice long, very long, introduction played by the orchestra. On the second night, when Gillan was introducing it with the 1971 Montreux... story, I shouted, "Highway Star" and he looked at me and made a sign with his hand like 'wait a minute.' I asked for "Highway Star" because the night before they had played "Pictures Of Home", then "Smoke On The Water" and had then left the stage, never to come back, because, as I said before, the band was disappointed with the audience's behavior during the "Concerto". I knew certainly that the only song that was feasible to be played after "Smoke On The Water" was "Highway Star".

It's important to mention that, the night before, at the end of the show, the crowd gave at least a 15-minute standing ovation to Purple's performance, and they didn't come back. I don't blame the band, it was really annoying how a few savages ruined the "Concerto".

"Smoke On The Water" - The classic of classics, everyone danced with this one. Ronnie Dio came back to the stage to sing (now I know why his group was called Elf, he is not only short, but also looks like a Troll. No offence, I love the power of his vioce, he has a bunch of fans here and I think that he enjoyed the love he received on every intervention.

"Highway Star" (played only on the second night) - Since the audience's behaviour was much better this time, they came back to play this great song. Steve and Paice started the song slowly with the motor-like sound and everything! The crowd went crazy with this one, you could perceive how happy this band is nowadays, they were smiling and enjoying every minute of it.

At the end I shook hands with Roger, Jon and Big Ian, and, guess what? I even got a drumstick from Ian Paice, what a souvenir!

I've seen Purple four times and the show that I've enjoyed the most was this last one, they were really, really great, simply the best rock band ever, I'm convinced.

Long live Deep Purple, we are waiting for the next album and of course the next world tour.

López de Cardenas Jorge

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