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Deep Purple - Live in Europe CD (album) cover


Deep Purple



3.22 | 13 ratings

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3 stars The cashing machine is on its way... Like Yes did with "Keys", the Purple is doing it here. This four CD set is the recording of two full concerts from their supporting tour for "The Battle Rages On". In 1994, the Purple released "Come Hell or High Water Live" which is a condensed version of this one. This CD boxset has been issued recently (twelve years after "Come Hell...") and fans might think that this is a new live release from the band.

Globally, these two concerts are very similar. In terms of track list : only a few ones vary. During the concert in Stuttgart they will play three additional tracks than the one in Birmingham : a short version of "The Mule" (just over two minutes), a cover for the ELO track "In The Hall Of The Mountain King" (just under two minutes) and "Speed King". All the other numbers are similar (the running order as well).

The intro for some songs are identical. Ian also thanks the audience in an exagerated way (pretty boring these shouts)! The differences reside in the rendition of the tracks (and their lenght). "Highway Star" 's intro in Birmingham had a pretty bad sound (for about two minutes, but then is fixed). The major differences are noticeable in "Child In Time" (longer by a minute or so in Stuttgart), "Anya" (longer by five minutes, again during the Stuttgart concert) and Jon keyboard solo called "Beethoven" or "Beethoven's Ninth".

What else do you need to know ?

Oh yes. A miracle happened during this tour : the "Space Truckin' " tune is cut down to less than three minutes : at last a "normal" (even shorter than the studio version !) rendering for this song. The Purple used to extend it to anything between fifteen to thirty-five minutes.

Also nice is their cover of "Paint It, Black" : while in the beginning of their Mark II era this song was a pure instrumental featuring a long drum solo (you can hear this on "Live In Aachen" and on "Scandinavian Nights"), the band is playing it more in accordance with the original here (leaving their hard rock blue print of course). For once, the Birmingham version is longer by 90 seconds. "Woman From Tokyo" will be shorted down to just over two minutes, which is a pain.

The version for "Hush" is quite good (as always under the Mark II). I would not say so about "Smoke" : clocking at over twelve minutes in Stuttgart (under ten in Birmingham) the start of the song is very good but after the normal track, we get a loooong audience repeating session which is only interesting at best (IMO) when you are in the audience (even if I quite dislike this exercise and never participate while attending a concert). I have seen the purple four times : twice in ... 1973, in 1998 and 2006 (the next one will be in May 2007 - in Antwerp) and in the early days (1973) this was fortunately avoided. I only wish we could return to this format (but since the audience seems to like this exercise, I doubt they will ever change this) !

All in all, it is not a bad boxset. As you have noticed, the Stuttgart concert is substantially longer. I would advice you to stick to the shorter version "Come Hell or High Water Live".

I believe that this live box is for die-hard fans and should rate it two stars. In comparison with "Come Hell" there are a few additional and interesting songs / moments ("Hush", "Paint It, Black", and "Beethoven") I will raise the rating to three stars. I recommend though to stick to the one CD version of this tour and not enter into their marketing strategy which is quite questionable.

ZowieZiggy | 3/5 |


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