Deep Purple

Clyde Auditorium, Glasgow

11 November 2009

Try to guess the set list from last night's gig. Go on, guess.


It was:

Highway Star
Things I Never Said
Not Responsible
Strange Kind Of Woman
Wasted Sunsets
Rapture Of The Deep
Contact Lost
/ Steve Morse solo / Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming
The Well-Dressed Guitar
Wring That Neck
No One Came

Don Airey solo / The Battle Rages On
Space Truckin'

Steve Morse solo / Smoke On The Water
Black Night

The band played on top form, Steve and Don especially seeming to click together better than ever. Steve's solos reminded me of his early years with the band when he convinced me that he was worthy of joining the greatest rock band in the world. Don's solo was both playful and technically stunning. The omission of a drum solo was noted — when Ian Paice does "that" break in the middle of Space Truckin' there's a huge roar from the crowd as we think he's going to do a proper solo... then he doesn't. Ah well. Ian Gillan was struggling a bit but entertains us with his banter and improvisations so that we don't care when when he can't quite make the notes.

Same old songs? I don't think so! Not enough new songs? Well... maybe, but Deep Purple have always been about more than the songs — it's the improvisations, the solos, the way they play around with the songs so you're hearing something different every time. All that was there, making everything sound fresh.

I know some people say the magic has gone and the band has become predictable and lost its edge. I don't feel that when I'm in a gig. I didn't feel that for any of the hour and 40-odd minutes the band was on stage last night. And you people won't believe this when you're watching the crappy Youtube bootlegs, but when you're there in the hall and feeling the power vibrating through your kneecaps or marvelling at the dazzling light show or laughing at some new twist on an old song or just swept up in the emotion of the thing, you know the magic hasn't gone anywhere.

When I say a Deep Purple gig is the best I've ever seen, I always mean it. Nothing else comes close. No matter what I may occasionally say about other bands, Deep Purple are still the best there is, the best there ever was and the best there ever will be.

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