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

Perth Monday 5th March

Well here I am again. April 1999 we saw them last (after 15 years or so) and it was fantastic then.

Last night was even better. I really didn't think they could live up to the energy and enthusiasm that we saw last time - I was VERY wrong. More agression, more energy and more enjoyment. These guys are having a ball!

And what a surprising set list. Lots of songs from the "Wouldn't it be great if they played that one" list. And brass and backing vocals!

Here goes:
1) "Woman From Tokyo". Played quite softly it seemed. Great way to start. Ian Gillan's voice is fantastic.
2) "Ted The Mechanic". With brass and backing singers. This gets better each time.
3) "Pictures Of Home". Less time spent on the slow solo build by Steve Morse. Punchier than last time.
4) "Mary Long"!! Never thought I'd hear this live. As with many of their songs, the lyrics still hold up. Great.
5) "Lazy". No long keyboard intro. Into it and on to the next
6) "No One Came". Can't believe what I'm hearing in the intro from Ian Gillan. They're going to play THAT one? At last some of the most neglected songs from the old days are getting a hearing. And it's fantastic. Lots of brass in place of the backwards gutar bits.
7) "Black Night". Still works and Ian Paice has a good time in the show off drum parts.
8) "Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming". Shorter version than the last tour - just the song this time without the extended guitar solo. Steve Morse's melody still sound amazing on this.
9) "'69". The one disappointment for me. The rolling riff seemed a bit muddy. It still rocked, but I was hoping for a clearer sound.
10) 'Name that riff' intro to "Smoke On The Water". Before the show we'd been fantasising about what covers we'd like to hear them do. A couple of AC/DC tracks came to mind. Sure enough, "Back in Black" was in there!! Plus too many more to mention. "Smoke On The Water" was sung with gusto by the crowd and it was great fun even if we have all heard it many times. The riff intro works well.
11) "Perfect Strangers". Good again. More punch to the guitar than last time.
12) "Hey Cisco". Brass again and it when well. Really nice to hear some different tracks.
13) "When A Blind Man Cries". Really enjoyed this. Good songs stand up.
14) "Fools"!!!! And it keeps getting better. "Fools laugh as they kill." Love the lyrics.
15) "Speed King" and assorted solos. Ian Paice did a very funny one hand solo with his other hand over his face feigning exhaustion. Incredible.

16) "Hush". Wonderful, a singalong at a Deep Purple concert! Who'd have thought? It was one of the many highlights.
17) "Highway Star". Ian Gillan's voice starting to go but there was enough to get him over the line. The band is still pumping hard after 2 hours and 20 minutes. It was worth every dollar.

I find it hard to believe that these guys arte still having so much fun. (And at their age!) See this concert!

A couple of gripes:
1) They still insist on tricky lighting during Ian Paice's drum solo. I would like to be able to see what he is doing rather than marvel at the lighting technology.
2) Support bands. Who are Black Steel and why did they annoy us all so much before the MUSIC started?! Let's think cleverly for a moment. The people that come to see Deep Purple are mostly a bit older than your average pub-goers. They have experienced lots of different types of music. We are older and wiser. Why not a string quartet as the warm up? Good contrast there, eh? Anything but the monotone drivel that was served up last night. (Sorry Black Steel fans.)

Rod Langlands

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