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Deep Purple - Fireball CD (album) cover

FIREBALL

Deep Purple

 

Proto-Prog

3.77 | 823 ratings

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ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer
4 stars I discovered Deep Purple with the single "Black Night" / "Speed King". I purchased it the same day than "Whola Lotta Love" and "Parano´d. That day was a great day, back in December 1970 : I was almost 12 years old and I was of course the only one to listen to this kind of music in my classroom.

The first Purple album I purchased was "Fireball". Although this album does not contain any of some legendary tracks, it is a damned great album. Like "In Rock" this album will not include their hit single "Strange Kind Of Woman" (my second Purple one) released five months earlier. This will also be rectified with the remastered version of the album. "Fireball", the title track has an incredible rythm : it is said that during the live renditions, Ian Paice was the fastest drummer in the world. "No, No, No" is a great tune : nor slow, nor crazy (sounds a bit Oriental - in the vein of Kashmir). Great job from Jon. "Demon's Eye", is a good middle of the road rock tune. A classic Purple hard rock song with good piece of instrumental breaks. "Anyone's Daughter" closes side one but is way too jazzy / folky. Out of tune and definitely the weakest track of this album.

Side two opens with "The Mule" : it is of course of another calibre : deeply Oriental influenced with an incredible drumming in the background (it will be in the foreground of course with Made In Japan). What a great job from Ian Paice (one of the very drummer in rock history). One of the highlight comes next. With "Fools", the Deep reached quite a level : this song mixes some prog elements to hard rock ones of the best vein (but after all, Purple is a hard-rock band, right ?). "No One Came" is another great hard rock songs like the band will produce quite a lot : heavy jkeys, strong bass and drumming. Blackmore is a bit more present than on most of the tracks (he will have his turn in the next album). Like the three albums of the mark I era, Jon Lord has a privileged and fundemental role on "Fireball".

A few years ago (in 2003), I purchased the remastered edition and if you have to spend any money for "Fireball", do buy this one. It has very good bonus tracks like the hit-single "Strange Kind Of Woman" (number 8 in the UK) which is remixed and a bit longer than the original. It will be one of their live highlights : remember the "talk" between Gillan and Blackmore in Made In Japan ? Next tracks are really worth but "Freedom" and "Slow Train" deserves a higher consideration. The vocal parts of "Feedom" at the end of the song have strongly inspired "Smooth Dancer" from "Who Do We Think". This is not the first ime that such a thing happen with the Deep (read my "In Rock" review for more details). Great hard rock moments. I do not like the remixes that much. The medley "The Noise ..." shows Jon's Lord great musicianship but really, it does not belong here (even as bonus track). It is an indication though on his "imrov" on stage later on. The instrumental "Fireball" will probably do you nothing wrong, but I am kind of sceptic about the use of this. This album will hit Nr. 1 in the UK (Nr. 7 in the US). Four solid stars.

ZowieZiggy | 4/5 |

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