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

Purple Abandon-Tour (Montpellier and Chalon sur Sa˘ne)

Both concerts have been of an exceptional quality. The band on its best! It's been a long time since I have seen Deep Purple playing. But if anybody didn't know until now: it is really the best band on earth. This mixture of old and new stuff, all these very complicated melodies, Jon's new solos, Paicey's absolutely splendid drumming, Roger's great bassplaying (what a lovely smile he always has!), Steve's gorgeous guitarplaying (who asks Ritchie back?) who brought so many totally new melodies, riffs and ideas into the band, and Ian's voice! These things all together makes them being the very best band at the moment being on the market. I was deeply moved to see the band in such good humour on stage. I still have the picture with Ritchie in my mind. A nice guitarplayer too, yes. But he really should never ever join Deep Purple. What Ritchie does at the moment is okay for him and for the fans. But for Deep Purple it would mean going backwards, stagnation. With Steve the pleasure to be on stage, to play, to jam came back. They have ideas like in the late 60ties early 70ties (modernised of course). Simply go and see them as often as you can.
The support in France was Gotthard, a Swiss group I used to write about times ago. Although being far from being on Deep Purple's level it is one of the best opener for DP. The French audience enjoyed them very much and was really hot to see Deep Purple after the break.

Lilo Barthod-Malat

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