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Commercial, but not contrived

Geir Myklebust has a new old article reprinted in his blog — a New Musical Express feature on (then) upcoming Fireball that was originally published on March 27, 1971.

Deep Purple – commercial without compromise

By Richard Green

FOR Deep Purple fans the end of an era is approaching. After late April or May, familiar numbers like “Speed King,” “Child In Time” and “Wring That Neck” will almost certainly disappear from the group’s repertoire, to be replaced by new additions. And the new additions will be taken from the highly important project on which Purple is now working – the heir to “Deep Purple In Rock.”
This week is the album’s fortieth consecutive week in the NME Chart and sales are almost as healthy now as they were in the balmy days at the beginning of last summer. “In Rock,” you will remember, is the album that pulled the group together collectively after the individual depressions that were a result of the concerto.
“The next album would have been ready by now but we had to hold it back a bit because of Richie’s operation,” Ian Gillan revealed. “It should be ready for the mixing stage and the art work by mid-April. Five tracks are done and there will be seven or eight included.”
Does Ian see it as an extension on “In Rock”?
“Well, yes, quite simply,” he replied and laughed at the brevity of his answer. Then he went on: “The tracks would have been out of place on `In Rock` but they seem to be a natural extension. The only common ingredient in both albums is earthiness.”
We touched on the subject of Deep Purple’s act which Ian agreed is based on the current album.
“I think audiences now are hearing us as we want them to, they’re seeing and hearing us playing our sort of music,” Ian began. “I used to go and see someone purely because I knew they would be doing certain numbers and I think it is nice for an audience to go and hear certain numbers.
“We could have been doing new numbers three or four months ago but on the British tour we decided to give In Rock a last fling. We’ll probably retain some of the numbers we’re doing now, some seem to follow on more naturally than others. You need to play numbers to give people a lift and others to bring them down to another level. People need to go through a series of ups and downs, they need to go through certain emotions. If you play the same thing all the time people start shuffling round on their backsides.”

Continue reading in Geir’s blog.

4 Comments to “Commercial, but not contrived”:

  1. 1
    Matti Alakulju says:

    I still don’t understand why so few songs from Fireball made it to the live repertoire. Many were revived later, but at the time it was a missed album.

  2. 2
    Micke says:

    @ 1 Matti, you are damned right! Fireball is for me the best of the mk II albums.

  3. 3
    Sleepy Cat says:

    “If you play the same thing all the time people start shuffling round on their backsides.” => if only they could remember that sentence when choosing songs to play live these days !

  4. 4
    stoffer says:

    Fireball is a really good LP and underrated as well as WDWTWA! The Mule sounded so good live although I’m probably in a minority when I say I didn’t care for Fireball live? @3 I agree! if/when the concerts return the setlist could be All Morse era tunes with encore medley of Highway Star, Perfect Strangers and SOTW 😁 (not likely tho lol)

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