Let me start by saying that I have been a Deep Purple fan for a very long time but I never expected that I would get the chance to see them live since they didn't seem to make it over to the US very much, especially not Atlanta!! However when the news hit I was extremely excited and rushed out to purchase my tickets the day they went on sale.
I have Live at the Olympia so I thought I knew what to expect from this lineup but nothing could have prepared me for the actual event of seeing them perform live. All 5 were smiling laughing and having a great time thoughout the show and they sounded incredible. Ian Gillan sounded better than he has on any recent live recording I've heard and although you couldn't hear Jon Lord for the first couple of songs, once they had worked that out it was amazing to listen to him and Morse interplay and adlib back and forth, I didn't realize how much of the stuff actually was improvised before seeing them but seeing them interact and make eye contact with each other and guiding the arrangements as they went along was very cool. At one point during Speed King when Gillan and Morse were trading off vocal/guitar licks Ian sang a line that made Steve completely lose track of what he was doing and he just burst out in laughter.
The set list was great although I would've liked to have heard Strange Kind of Woman or Space Truckin I guess they can't play everything. And since they're doing some more obscure stuff now it would be cool if they played Never Before, No No No, Mary Long, or Super Trouper but getting to hear Bloodsucker live was definitely a highlight.
Steve Morse completely blew me away with his guitar playing. I gained a lot of respect for him (not that I didn't already think he was amazing).
I'm sure everybody is wondering what the new stuff sounds like and let me say that as good as Purpendicular was, if the two songs they played last night were any indication, this new album is going to blow it to pieces. Lots of dynamics, heavy riffs, jamming, and everything that Deep Purple should be. IG did get lost with the lyrics during the first new song and he laughed and had this look on his face like he had no clue what was going on but it was still great. The other new song "7th Heaven" was one of the coolest things I've heard from DP EVER. IG made a small announcement about the fact that they had just come from the studio and that this was the first time they had played these songs in front of anybody.
I was very glad to be able to witness this show and I hope that this is not my only chance to see them. Hopefully the wonderful crowd response and the VERY full house will convince them to come back to Atlanta some time.