Deep Purple - The Village Green, Durban, South Africa

Saturday 25. March 1995




Subject: Deep Purple - Made in Durban & Unplugged

Date: Mon, 27 Mar 1995 11:30:57 GMT

Here follows my summary of DP's Durban concert on 25th March (Saturday). For quite a while I've been reading these reviews from other guys, with a lot of jealousy, I must add. Well, my turn came at last, although I must admit to being extremely disappointed at not being able to see RB, as he was the reason I first got into DP.

By Mark Davies

Anyway, it got off to a bad start - the truck with the equipment broke down on the way from their Pretoria concert, so the support act was cancelled (OH NOOO!! ;) )and Uriah Heep's act was cut short - down to about 35 min! I'm also a part-time Heep fan so was quite disappointed. For the sake of UH fans, the set list was:

Devil's Daughter
Free Me (Hate this one)
The Wizard
July Morning
Easy Livin'

They didn't play Gypsy! Or Lady in Black! Anyway, DP was the main reason I went, so I wasn't overly disappointed.

I forget to add that I of course managed to get a front-row centre spot! I mean I was right in front with my hands on the stage by Gillan's vocal monitor. The Village Green is a smallish venue - it's actually just a large tent, with horrible acoustics, but when you're that close it doesn't make much of a difference. Anyway, the set list (shorter by about 5 or 6 songs from the set lists posted by the guys in Florida)

Highway Star (Solo exactly the same)
Black Night
The Battle Rages On (Very tight)
Woman From Tokyo (Good, but could do without too much high harmonic note whammying - sorry Steve!)
The Perpendicular Waltz (Slow, chugging rhythm - not too bad)
When A Blind Man Cries (Brilliant! THE best guitar solo I've ever seen played live! Of course, I've never seen RB either. :))
Perfect Strangers
Pictures of Home (Gillan fools the crowd into thinking it's SOTW - "We wrote this in Switzerland in 1972...") Organ/Keyboard Solo
Child in Time (Impressive - Gillan's vocals sound better live than on CHOHW!)
Anya (Very nice)
Guitar Solo (Some impressive stuff!)
Drum Solo
Speed King

Smoke On The Water (I prefer the other way the riff is played - he seems to play it off one string. I also prefer the original solo.)

At some point in the encore, I did shake Gillan's hand, and he signed my TBRO CD. Actually, it looks like someone scribbled with a black pen on the cover, so I don't know if anyone will ever believe me! My friend next to me got my CHOHW CD signed too (I was trying to make the most of the opportunity!) I shook Steve Morse's hand, but the other guys stayed away from the front row. The show finished at 1 am - pretty late.

Overall, Steve Morse does a really good job. His style is obviously different, but he does have a very wide vibrato like RB. I should add I've never heard a Steve Morse recording before. He seems like a very groovy, friendly guy actually. Him and Lord do quite a good exchange of licks in Speed King.

Random notes - At some point, someone in the front row lit up a joint, and the smell obviously wafted up to Gillan - he made an obvious show of wrinkling up his nose, and looked down at the source! Also, I notice he uses the same comments that he uses in most of the live DP - like "LOUDERRRRR!" during SOTW, etc.

Deep Purple Unplugged

A while ago I joked about this - well, it happened! 'S true! Last Thursday, they were interviewed and played a 20 min unplugged set live on the radio - just Glover, Lord and Morse. They gave some vague reason why Gillan couldn't make it. They said the new album was only coming out in January. I was expecting an earlier date, but that's what Glover said! Morse was on acoustic, Lord on Piano, but I'm not sure if Glover was on another acoustic - I didn't hear any bass. Unfortunately, I couldn't tape it, as I was caught in traffic in a rainstorm at the time (actually I was cursing all the way home!), but they played:

Black Night
Child in Time
Some new song - didn't catch the name.
Woman From Tokyo
When A Blind Man Cries

The last one made me realise that Morse really is a brilliant guitarist - his accoustic picking, etc was fantastic. They weren't entire versions - some just moved straight into the following song without a break. Of course, they were all instrumental. Jon Lord's playing live in the studio was phenomenal - he really is a genius.

Well, I'm sorry I carried on for so long but it was one of the best weekends of my life!


Reviews index
Deep Purple Homepage