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Deep Purple - Concerto for Group and Orchestra CD (album) cover

CONCERTO FOR GROUP AND ORCHESTRA

Deep Purple

 

Proto-Prog

3.18 | 181 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

the philosopher
4 stars I had listened to this record in my teenage years, but never payed it much intention. Lately, I found a vinyl copy of this record with only the three movements on it. In the main while I became influenced for several years by progressive influences and became more open- minded to classical music, although I've never build up a classical music collection.

I was a bit skeptical about Deep Purple placed in the proto-prog category, but since I listened to this Concerto for Group and Orchestra it became all clear. While the music is never progressive rock in it's true sense, the orchestra plays progressive stuff and Deep purple handles with the rockin' part. Released in 1969 this is a record at the beginning of the progressive rock movement.

I felt in love with the First Movement. John Lord made this movement to show the differences between the band and the orchestra - as antagonists. This lengthy composition (over 19 minutes) is based on a nice clarinet tune with lots of sideways. The first 8 minutes are played by the orchestra. There are some nice passages, some bombastic passages, some tension building passages and some optimistic parts. And then Deep Purple takes over and shows the electrified version of the clarinet tune. Blackmore shows his fast skills on the guitar until the orchestra tries to take over again. There is some nice interaction here between a bombastic orchestra and the band and the orchestra finally takes over. Later on the band emerges again with some keyboard solo's. This composition has so much to offer! This is my favorite track/composition of Deep Purple's entire catalog!

The second movement is divided in two halves, because of the vinyl format. This dividing is done without any problems however and results in two compositions. The first of them end with the first vocal interventions by Ian Gillan for Deep Purple. His talent is shown from the first moment!

The second side of the vinyl record contains the second half (or actually three quarter) of the second movement and the third movement. While there are some passages the band and the orchestra is playing together there is no real fusion of them. Mostly it is the orchestra or the band. This offers some nice variation however and when accepted this works out as a benefit compared with Deep Purple as a band only.

While I must admit the first side is the better one this is a great record. Especially the orchestra is doing some great job and does convinces me of the quality classical music is able to deliver. In my opinion this edition without the bonus tracks is the better one. It is far more coherent and feels like a whole. In this particular case I should say: more is less. First side: 4,5 stars and the second side: 3,5 stars.

the philosopher | 4/5 |

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