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

LA HOB 1/28 Wednesday night review

I entered the HOB around 8.30pm, knowing that the band was going on stage around 10.30pm. The club was maybe one-third full at that time. I began my search to find a spot in the trenches near the front row. The areas in front of Steve and Ian were packed, but there was a little room in front of Roger. And there in the front row was my old AOL buddy Michael (aka Oakman). He introduced me to the person next to him, fellow amdper Stephen Thompson from Scotland. So, we chit-chatted a while, watching the venue fill up. A little while later, a tall gentleman taps me on the shoulder asking, "Are you Dana?" It's Wolf Schneider, one of dp-www's editors, who recognized me from web page photos (yikes!). He was there at the gig on official business, to take photos for the web page - what a job! And he had never seen DP live before, so tonight was a special night for him.

Eventually, Far, the opening act took the stage and treated the audience to 30 minutes of 90s teenager angst, complete with a screaming spastic singer. The band were a bunch of kids in their early twenties who didn't impressing anyone with their songwriting or playing abilities. Basically, they had one song which they kept playing over and over. They were pretty bad.

Which can't be said about the headliners, the mighty Deep Purple. The set list was the same as the New Orleans and Chicago shows, with Hush as the opening song. First impression - the band sounded FANTASTIC!!! When I was in New Orleans standing in front of Steve, I mostly heard Steve all night and very little else. Well, Wednesday night standing in the second row in front of Roger, I heard all the instruments clearly, included Jon. Second impression, the band seem rusty after their five week lay-off. I think everyone fluffed a note or two on stage, but I doubt anyone but the hardcore fanatics (and maybe the band) noticed. An example, Steve's solo was skipped, because Ian Paice were straight into Black Night from Pictures of Home (I think). Ian Gillan glanced at the lyric book a few times and seemed a little off (but maybe you saw that on the cybercast - why am I bothering writing this thing up ;-) A few miscues, but these diminished as the night wore on. Also, I think Jon had a new rig on stage. I heard later that he was trying out a new organ (which sounded great) and I noticed the leslie speakers looked different - you couldn't see the revolving fan-things. Steve and Jon didn't seem to interact as much this night as I've seen them before. Lots of little things were out of whack Wednesday night, but overall, a good show. On a scale of 1 to 10, I'd give it a 5 or 6. Favorite songs of the night: Seventh Heaven (it's soo good) and No One Came.

One good thing about this night was the goodies I came away with. One of Roger's picks was flung at me and ended up in my pocket. And Paicey threw one of this encore drumsticks just over my head. The guys behind me missed and the stick ended up at my feet (with me ending up on my ass with a bunch of guys tackling me :-) With the stick in my grubby little hands, the guy behind me the whole night helped me to my feet. Interesting fellow, in his mid-30s, with a prominent New York accent, dark features (possibly Italian) wearing an old _|_ concert t-shirt. I didn't see a blue and orange Knicks jacket on him, though. He definitely knew all the words to all the songs and shouted them quite loudly throughout the night!! What a gentleman.

After the show, I meet more folks from the internet like Phil Caine and his wife, Carl from Canada and a fellow AOLer Frank Belt. It was a fun night and it was great knowing that there were three more nights of Deep Purple to come.

That's all for Wedneday night,
Dana McDermott

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