[hand] [face]
The Original Deep Purple Web Pages
The Highway Star

Wring That Neck

Wring That Neck appeared in the setlist this summer. The grand premier of the track, performed live for the first time since those two days in September 1999 (by the “Ian Paice Big Band”), happened in Montreux on July 17. The rumour mill has it that the track never was rehearsed or intended to be played. But when Ian Gillan needed a couple of minutes to recuperate from the extremely hot venue, the band had to fill the gap with an instrumental. Don Airey started the riff and the whole band jumped right in. The song have stayed in the setlist ever since, albeit being a far cry in length from the 15-20 minute versions of the early days.

And for those who didn’t manage catch it live yet, here’s a clip from Big Twin Festival, Castellon, Spain, September 13, 2008:

50 Comments to “Wring That Neck”:

  1. 1
    SEVEN-47 says:

    AWESOME! Hard to believe the song is 40 years old.

  2. 2
    dpprpl says:

    What the hell!!!!

    They don’t play it right. They skip a bridge in every first section of the riff. This song is not intended for simplification!!!!!
    I’m amazed as Morse being so technical and gifted, that he can’t pull it note for note. (I have heard here that it’s because he doesn’t want to put Ritchie in shame out of respect, but please play it properly out of respect to the fans and to himself)
    Please just listen to the many versions on youtube, particularly a show in germany (b&w) 1970. Astonishing.
    Then again, WTN used to last for 30 minutes, I don’t think I could endure a 30 minute Morse jam of the same ramblings into the middle section of the guitar up and down the same way.

    Oh, and I’m not bashing Morse here ok? It’s just his human limitations, as great as he is. It’s his limitation on improvisation (as opposed to Ritchie, greatest in that department ever bar none). Hope it doesn’t itch and inflame the Morse-ites, because according to a few commentators here, they are entitled to be precisely that, but the Blackmore-ites should be cast into a dungeon, oblivion and/or suffer the worst pains possible, and of course to them Morse is better in every single and possible way (clearly quite absurd).

    Gimme a break! and give yourselves one, go grab In Concert 1970/1972 and listen to the real thing (WITH JON!!!!!!)
    That should give perspective for those who say the Gillan factor weighs a lot as he is under par 40 years later. THIS IS AN INSTRUMENTAL.

    AND, I absolutely love mark 8 live, saw them this year twice and it was fantastic!!
    It’s just not mark 2.
    Fair is fair.
    Did you know that Machine Head has gone all the way to the top of the Everest and also to outer space? I guess most of us do. Perhaps one day, Purpendicular might get to the top of Canary Wharf.
    But, really, I’m not living in the past as Ian Anderson would have you say. I’ll go to watch DP again whenever I can, and of course I’ll go to see Candice (yummy)!!!! I’ll go to listen to Ritchie. 🙂

  3. 3
    SEVEN-47 says:

    dpprpl; I don’t think they’re trying to be Mark II here. Although I agree with much of what you said, I think this was just their version of a classic. Remember there’s only one original member performing from the original recording.

  4. 4
    Roberto says:

    Watch this version, is simply awesome as Paice and Blackmore playing.Noone where at their level…
    I have no words to descibe this…. http://it.youtube.com/watch?v=Pf7izXdJKrc

    I remember that this improvisational jam lasted 30-34 minutes that years and not 2 minutes as nowdays….

  5. 5
    Roberto says:

    Blackmore can’t even be compared to Page…
    and Paice, how wonderful…

  6. 6
    T says:

    Kudos to DP for bringing a new oldie to the setlist, even if in abbreviated format.

  7. 7
    stoffer says:

    I think its great they play stuff from long ago and you know its never going to sound the same just be glad they still play it. Fans can choose to bash if they want but the original lineup or MKII is not gonna happen, so take what they give and make your choice to listen or not I’ll never turn my back on DP.

  8. 8
    Bo says:

    Both the new and the old are great, BUT still it’s impossible to beat the old stuff. The energy level are superior. And then you have Blackmore. NOBODY comes even close to him, not even today. There are never a dull second when you listen or watch him play.
    I love DP today BIG TIME, but even after so many years and concerts with the great Steve Morse, Mrk II will always be THE “love” of my life.

  9. 9
    Eirik Solum says:

    Steve Morse plays a Eddie Van Halen guitar on some songs during this gig.

    Into the Fire and SKOW


  10. 10
    SEVEN-47 says:

    Bo; I understand what you’re saying, and pretty much agree. But it was the childish behavior and immature antics that finally took their toll. I spent many a night arguing that Blackmore was the best ever, but his refusing to perform “Smoke On The Water”, and the water throwing incident allowed me to wake up. Yeah he’s a great guitar player, but he needs to be a solo act. He can’t handle performing with people who are just as talented as he is. This is where I find Steve Morse a refreshing change, or should I say found him to be a refreshing change, he’s been the man for 14 years now.

  11. 11
    Annemie says:

    OH YES!!!!!!!!!!!!MADNESS EXISTS 😀

    I like MK8 and I also go to see them, but MY HEART AND SOUL AND MIND beats for BLACKMORE…in DP, R , BN … in tights and out… euh… 😉
    and of course for genious Lord….


  12. 12
    mike whiteley says:

    Unrehearsed ??
    Does that mean DP can rediscover the joy of jamming onstage ??
    I hope so.
    Drop Guitar Parade/Riff Raff/Steve’s Solo and stretch Wring That Neck to a cozy 10 minutes or so !!

  13. 13
    TruthHurts says:

    Credit where it’s due…this is a good performance.

  14. 14
    Davey G says:

    MAN…. I’m so tired of reading the same useless comments from so called fans — bitching or criticizing every nuance of the band that they are obviously obsessed with — I am without a doubt the single greatest fan of DP – I enjoy playing their music with my own band – I have met them and actually became friends – but GOD — I don’t need to voice my broken down busted up opinion every time someone posts some news or a new video — (oh, they didn’t play it right — steve isn’t ritchie — ) No S*** — YOU form a band and write and perform for 40 + years and then let’s see what ya got — MOM says: if ya don’t have anything good to say — shut up. — I won’t be responding to the responses of this post — don’t waste your/my time — LONG LIVE DP. (dg)

  15. 15
    SEVEN-47 says:

    Every fan is entitled to an opinion. If you’re “so tired of reading…” the solution is simple; don’t read them. I personally enjoy the exchange of views between the fans of Deep Purple, whether or not I agree with them. Have a good day Sir.

  16. 16
    Crimson Ghost says:

    But really, when reading some of it 47, you simply can’t argue that ones ability and ones desire are two different things. Saying because Morse doesn’t do a note for note is because he is incapable, rather than choosing to simply play it his own way, is as ignorant as it gets, especially for someone who also seems to like him. Ignorant I say… And another thing folks, extended jamming is not always improvising, sometimes it’s just plain self indulgent filler, and was plenty of the time in 60’s and 70’s, however beautiful it sounded, they were just playing around with less songs and more jamming to fill the playing time. Yes it resutled in beauty, but it was just the way they did things in those days. Improvising defines itself in many ways, not just being a jam band. Steve Morse is as good at improvising as anyone, and if they did things that way anymore, he’d get a chance to jam plenty, but this isn’t 1970.(in more ways than one)

    Saying that people who support Morse are against Blackmore is retarted, some of us just don’t live in the past and can except change and can deal with it. But I’m sure you can point out one person here who preferes Morse to Blackmore just because they approve of him… it doesn’t mean that for one second, it just means we’re flexible and don’t happen to end all at the guitar, it’s one fifth of the quintet, not a one man show. Life has proven to exist successfully for them without HIM! Wake up and either enjoy it or find something else to talk about… the idea is to celebrate, not desicrate… it only breeds negative banter, simply because it’s negative to begin with. Enyoy, or sulk, but don’t preech radical nonsense.

  17. 17
    dpprpl says:

    My apologies for starting with “What the hell!” Political correctness nowadays cautions the use of that kind of semantics, lest to be cast as a radical, which I never intended to be thought of as.

    Now then Crimson, ignorance is exacting excuses for someone else out of a desire to defend a certain view. You shouldn’t speak for someone else. And I won’t say that’s retarded or that it’s a desecration. However, on the other hand, my opinion as wrong as it may be, even if informed, is not radical and wasn’t meant to be negative, but I already apologized for my vivid choice of words. Maybe controversial, yes indeed, which is what 747 is defending in this vehicle for open exchange.

    I NEVER said Steve was incapable. Quite the contrary, he is amazing. Let me be clear, the only thing I am saying is that his strongest quality is not in improvisation (and now I’m not even delving into comparisons). He can and will surely play the riff and almost any riff the way he wants, even make it more complex if he chooses. He IS that good.
    The most important portion of my opinion is what I say about this particular song not being meant for simplification.

    Simplification works sometimes. Sorry to take an example from Ritchie, but if you remember how he started cutting notes out of Perfect Strangers when he played it live, it had an amazing effect, up to the point of the coda, where he then introduced a very powerful riff behind Jon’s solo. (another great example being The Battle Rages On half-muted riff of the solo intro)

    Beyond all that, Long live Deep Purple in any incarnation. My Ipod has all the records, I do edits on songs, I met the band and I’m not so pretentious as to think they’re my friends, they’re my musical idols.

    After a concert with Dream Theater and ELP at the Universal Amphitheater in LAX, they invited me backstage and not to the meet and greet room, but where they were resting, so I chatted with all of them (except for big Ian, ‘cos he wasn’t there, I greeted him later). And then, they were amazingly cool to give my girlfriend and I a ride to the Sheraton Hotel (well, they were also staying there!) This was Mk 7. (so I got to talk to Jon!) and then this year I met them again in Mexico City and I talked to all the guys backstage (no IG again). Roger told me they wouldn’t do Hard Lovin’ Man ever again because it didn’t work live and I said Iron Maiden made a career out of that riff and he just smiled (almost laughed). So, I’ve been lucky with Purple in the post-Ritchie era!

    One more thing, I also didn’t say that people who support Morse are against Blackmore. I said that people who support Morse here are against people who support Blackmore (and in a very simple and elementary way it’s true both ways). It’s a matter of personal taste and then the exchanges begin. Yes, I’ve read a few thoughtless and nonsensical reviews stating that either one of the guitarists in question is a 0, while the other is a 100.
    THAT is what’s really ignorant.
    I prefer mark 2, but I most surely love that there is still a very rightfully on-their-own Deep Purple.

    My favorites in the Morse era:
    Purpendicular, Rapture, Bananas, Abandon.
    Best live: with the LSO.
    Best songs: Rapture, Before Time Began, Walk on, 7th Heaven, Sometimes, A Touch away.

    See? No Blackers talk for a full paragraph!!


  18. 18
    dpprpl says:

    It’s saturday and raining, that’s why I couldn’t play golf, therefore the extra time, LOL.

  19. 19
    stoffer says:

    SEVEN 47, Crimson AND dpprpl… good well thought out comments I really enjoyed reading them, written by huge fans of the best rock band ever.
    Cheers and Goodnight!

  20. 20
    Tracy Heyder says:

    “Here I Go Againnnnnnn”….

    It never ceases to amaze me how hard it is to please people. You ask for different songs to be covered Live, and then when it happens, you criticize it as not good enough. There truly is no pleasing some of the Anal, Narrow Minded, Stuck in the Rut fogies. You really need to let it go and enjoy it while you can. These versions are GREAT! and finally, different from the old Blackmore days. You can relive that shit any time you want. You can play it back, Over and Over and Over again….just the way you like it. God Bless the Old Live Recordings and God Bless the Present versions that would not exist at all if it were up to Candice’s Puppet.


  21. 21
    The Cat-That-Sleeps says:

    You said : “performed live for the first time since those two days in September 1999”.
    No, it has been performed on the 2000 tour too.

  22. 22
    SEVEN-47 says:

    I wonder if Ian would ever consider performing “Burn”, I really miss that song. I believe he could still cover both Coverdale’s and Hughes’ parts. And I’d really like to hear Morse’s version. Don’t wake me I’m dreaming!:)

  23. 23
    dpprpl says:

    if I may:

    Both times I have talked with Steve Morse he was just the greatest guy. Eager to chat about lots of things and so very relaxed and unpretentious. He signed my T and (during the concert) he threw me a pick -he flipped it perfectly, 🙂 I was at the second row)

    “Hey Steve so what are you doing after the tour?” LAX was the last or next to last concert of that tour.

    He said, “I’m going home to pay the bills or my wife will kill me!!”

    on another note, can I be Candice’s twin sister puppet?
    and Tracy, we ENJOY!!!, but even as such, we still can discern.
    please explain narrow-mindedness within the context of my opinions, I’m really eager to be enlightened by your obviously unmitigated liberation of mind.

    don’t mind about the anal, I’ll have a chat with my butt later on…

    and please go listen to The Mule from Stuttgart ’93.

  24. 24
    Rascal says:

    ‘They dont play it right’……..whine whine, ‘Its just not the same’…….whine whine…

    Maybe old ‘Blackers’ should do a ‘minstrel’ version……….on the old mandolin

    Does he know where to plug his Fender in these days???

  25. 25
    Adam says:

    Too bad, can’t get it going on my PC…for Wring That Neck is among the stuff that I’ve been waiting to hear again since 1985 (was of course too young then but a listening and watching fan nonetheless, and I’ve got the 1984 – 2000 bootleg collection). I know as well as we all do that it can never again be Concerto (the 1969 thing), and that Mk 8 isn’t Mk 2, but still I’d love to hear it back!

  26. 26
    Tracy Heyder says:


    I don’t recall singling you out in my statement. Actually I agree with much of what you stated…..EXCEPT:

    You said….

    “What the hell!!!!
    They don’t play it right. They skip a bridge in every first section of the riff. This song is not intended for simplification!!!!!”

    This is where the difficulty starts. And it is what I was referring to. Not just towards you, but to the other chronic complainers. As with any version of any song they play “LIVE”, none of them are “Played Right”. They are “LIVE” versions. If they decide to extend one or shorten it, it’s part of the show. Sometimes they do one to test the water. Everybody has their favorite “Live” version of various tunes. If they weren’t played different, long or short, what would be the point? Just crank up your IPOD and put it on “Repeat Mode”. Now you can be happy, every time you hear it.

    Now, as far as having a chat with your butt, does it make the same sound every time? Are some of it’s versions too short? Are some of it’s expressions too long? Do you have a favorite version of what it says? Who’s really in charge….You or your butt. It would be a real ‘gas’ if you put it on YOU TUBE for us to watch. I’ll bet it’s a ‘shitty’ conversation……he he he.


  27. 27
    Rascal says:

    Maybe the ‘Butt’ left and joined a band of wandering ‘Minstrel Butts’…………… commonly known as ‘AssHoles’

    Maybe instead of being ‘Buttless’ a replacement ‘Butt’ was found, and since then harmony has resumed…………

  28. 28
    Tracy Heyder says:

    Maybe….just maybe, a ‘Mandrake Root’ will plug the butt….

    Of course, that depends on how ‘long’ the mandrake root is. Apparently ‘size or length is everything’. Will it be long enough to get the job done? Naaaahhhh. Probably not. The bigger the Ass Hole, the ‘longer’ the root. It’s a chic thing.

    I prefer quantity these days. That’s a guy thing. Give me a bunch of properly performed tunes over a few extended and overbearing renditions any day. BORING!!! Now Ritchie can ‘Hurdy Gurdy’ All Night Long, if Candice allows it. Long soloing went out around the time Ritchie became Candice’s Bitch. Actually before then, but the few leftovers whom can’t get past it…..oh well. Keep on bitchin’

    That was a great time, but the 70’s are long gone. MK8 does it different and much fresher. It’s called progression and maturing. Funny…..Ritchie doesn’t do any long solos and stretching of tunes or improvising anymore in his present band either. Nobody criticizes that though. See what I mean?

    “Long Live Rock & Purple….”


  29. 29
    purplepriest1965 says:

    Progression and maturing

    NO WAY!


    No energy left for intelligent nonsense and blabberin on and on


    The debate will never stop because the CHOICE they made was wrong

    Cut these progression crap

  30. 30
    dpprpl says:

    rascal, you amaze with your rhetoric and clarity of thought. Cheers. I hope the financial crisis didn’t affect you.

    tracy, with that name I always thought you were a girl, especially with the way you hate Candice as it sounds as a chic thing, it’s good that I get to straighten some facts. It’s true we agree on most of the issues and it’s also good we can agree to disagree on others.

    listen to Fires at midnight and Ariel live, those are extended solos.
    and I’m sorry but I really do prefer this new version of Rainbow Eyes, the Fender is great (someone must have plugged it in for him). and no doubts, Ronnie IS a much better singer than Candice, it has nothing to do with the way Ritchie wanted to play each version.

    please define progression in music…

  31. 31
    Rascal says:

    ‘Clarity of Thought’……why thankyou!

    It comes from years of heavy drinking…..

    Definition of ‘Progression’……….I started drinking in moderation and rapidly ‘progressed’ to the passing out and alcohol poisoning stage……burp

    ‘Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll’

    Dont pull on Ritchies ‘Mandrake Root’

  32. 32
    Tracy Heyder says:

    Aside from Rascal’s clear definition which I can truly relate to, I thought my point was made. So here is some more ‘clarity’.

    Those long overbearing doodling and extended versions were OK from time to time, but overall I found myself yawning after a while. I remember Ritchie making the statement as to why he loved playing in Japan after they reformed in ’85. “The Japanese are so disciplined and don’t interrupt when I am playing my softer expressions. They wait until I’m done before they clap”. That’s them, everyone else says “GET ON WITH IT!!!!” That’s great if you are the only member of the band, and if you are a solo artist as is Satriani, Malmsteem, etc. Guitar shreaders have their base, but overall don’t do too well on the sales and draw factor. Yes one of Purple’s old standards was the super long extended versions of tunes. They were also once known as the “Loudest Band in the World”. They have progressed and moved on from those stigmas. They still extend some, but the trade off is you get twice as many songs as before. It’s how they want it and it works better today. I think they do a pretty good job, improvising where they see fit, yet playing more songs.

    Anyway, most folks these days are bored with those long renditions and prefer more tunes over long ones. To a certain extent I agree. Here is why. There is 40 years of material available to play. They only play around 1.5 hours. I don’t want to hear 5 long songs. I want to hear the whole catalogue. Their versions are entirely different than the original studio versions. The solos are different and they usually begin and end differently. Though everyone compares to “Made in Japan”, I doubt the masses would take kindly to going back to those days when they only played 10 songs, including the encore. Forget longer songs. I would much rather they do longer shows. 2 hours should be their minimum with 20 tunes considering the huge catalogue of songs from which to choose and from which the fans would love to hear.


  33. 33
    Rascal says:

    The Ramones had it right…………dont piss about with extended twiddly bits….

    Get on and play the damn thing…….

  34. 34
    purplepriest1965 says:

    For someone who seems to think he speaks for all of us by saying long extended songs is not what lots of people want YOU write often very long stuff yourself

    I prefer the long versions by DP anyday and will settle with about 10 or 12 extended songs in one show.

    Btw, I do not mind if they are ALL MORSE era based

    O fuck, they ll never do that

    People will get bored

    Too much twiddly diddly

  35. 35
    dpprpl says:

    Sorry, I don’t think I could stand 5 minutes of the Ramones, it’s not really my cup of tea, and surely not the most ellaborate music out there. (It surely was a statement -even if it was a backwards one, but it was) Of course, they couldn’t even grasp the idea of an introduction/theme/exposition/coda coming from the garage and thank god they never attempted it. So it’s good they stuck to their philosophy (in their case, it’s more a way of thinking)

    I’ll rather always stick to listening to more extended stuff (and actual music!) like Yessongs, Welcome back my friends, MADE IN JAPAN, Mahler 3, Beethoven’s 9….

    Olympia was so fresh (and good) because they did great stuff that had been forgotten (by Ritchie), No one Came, Blind Man, and played the new stuff (then). It’s interesting (at least to me) that Steve was looking for a Purple identity.
    Ok, 15 years afterwards the songs are shorter but now he has developed a full Purple persona and the concerts are really tight and powerful, but I do wish they played 1 or 2 looooong jams/exchanges/solos, hell even a bit of twiddly! (keeping off limits the Van Halen-esque yank-in-the-balls notes) while sacrificing 2 songs. That would give even more balance IMHO.

    As for Ritchie, I wish he would play the 2 hours of his concerts solo. However, he is the one who says that melodies are more important than solos, so he’ll stick to that. His twiddly is the best out there. I don’t like the shredders twiddly that much (except for when Yngwee gets classical, which in a way, as he admonishes it, does a Ritchie)


  36. 36
    Tracy Heyder says:

    At least 2 hours of Crankin’ Purple music is what I need at a show. A couple of extended and improvised jams thrown in, but at least 2 hours and 20 songs……

    I’m just a Simple Man……..


  37. 37
    purplepriest1965 says:

    Yeah, we know by now

  38. 38
    Tracy Heyder says:

    Yes, nowhere near as complex as thou, whom is like a fragile flower, with layer upon layer of wilting pedals, dripping with nectar (or Sap) only to be gobbled up by stinging bees and army ants.


  39. 39
    WindHawk says:

    Yeah, we know Macy. You southern people are simple,
    even stupid!!

  40. 40
    SEVEN-47 says:

    Who’s “Macy”? 🙂

  41. 41
    Rascal says:

    ‘Macy’??…….that would be ‘WindHawks’ mother, or possibly his father.

  42. 42
    Cranberry says:

    It’s his Dad!

  43. 43
    Joanna says:

    Awesome indeed! As if I were at a gig in 70ties.

  44. 44
    stefan says:

    Windhawk is probably the result of siblings sharing a bedroom!!

  45. 45
    stefan says:


    GABBA GABBA HEY??????????

  46. 46
    purplepriest1965 says:

    Are we still talking about the possibilty of some extended stuff?

    I m off now…..trying to extend myself in the gym

  47. 47
    Tracy Heyder says:

    That should be easy enough for your Priest…..a gym full of guys should do the trick….


  48. 48
    purplepriest1965 says:

    Whats that with your hompohobic fixation?

    I m definitely not gay and most classes and sports I attend in my club are loaded with young women.

    BTW, I must admit, although really not being anti gay or something like that I m not voting for the possibility for them to get married.
    Is a bit contra dictory, dont ya think?

    I m not that kind as it may seem, I m afraid.

  49. 49
    stefan says:

    No shit???
    Hardly any!!

  50. 50
    Nero says:

    The song was so perfect, 40, years ago,.. i love the undercooled ready to blast ambiance,… this version is OK as a gig,… not as a statement. But if you want it live,.. you’ll have to stick to what you get from this Mark. They are goog, damn good. Saw ’em in Belgium (Tienen) this year. Remarcable old fella’s that rock like no other can roll. Even better.

Add a comment:

Preview no longer available -- once you press Post, that's it. All comments are subject to moderation policy.

||||Unauthorized copying, while sometimes necessary, is never as good as the real thing
© 1993-2022 The Highway Star and contributors
Posts, Calendar and Comments RSS feeds for The Highway Star