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

House of Blues Saturday Night Show

    The Saturday night show was evidence of how magnificent Deep Purple still is as a band. The performance of Ian Paice was particularly notable. The dynamic quality and expert precision of his drumming was absolutely splendid. Roger Glover was totally awesome, especially during "Pictures of Home". Ian Gillan was putting on a stellar performance. He entertained the crowd thoroughly with his charisma and silver throated vocals. Jon Lord and Steve Morse had some excellent interactive lead solos. Steve would lay out some blazing lead notes. Then Jon Lord would roll up his sleeves and just like in the days of old, he would produce some incredible sounds from his Hammond organ.
    They played practically all of the hit songs. Opening with the song "Hush" brought back memories of hearing them for the first time. Deep Purple was catapulted into the highest echelon of the rock music world, and on this night, they proved why they are the greatest band of all time. "Highway Star" was absolutely dynamite. "Fireball" was hotter than hell. "Speed King" rocked the building into the ground. "Perfect Strangers" was well, totally perfect. The crowd was enjoying every second of this event, and for a moment I had a feeling that the roof of the House of Blues, was going to be blown off onto Sunset Blvd. The highlight of the evening was the new song "Seventh Heaven". I am looking forward to the studio version of this excellent piece of work.
    This was an outstanding performance by Deep Purple. At times the mix was muddy. Maybe we can blame it on "El Nino", or perhaps an intoxicated sound man.
    Next time I would like to hear the keyboards of Jon Lord much louder, just like on the Made in Japan album. Or as Ian Gillan would say, "turn up everything louder than everything else". We are looking forward to the return of Deep Purple to Southern California in the summer of 1998. Guys, come back anytime, we will welcome you back with thunderous applause...

Terry Coakley

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