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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Deep Purple

Graz 1975

Review by Gary Hill

If you like this version of Deep Purple (guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, frontman David Coverdale, bassist/vocalist Glenn Hughes, keyboard player Jon Lord and drummer Ian Paice) you must own this. It’s an incredible live album. The performance is great and so is the sound quality. It was one of the final shows before Blackmore left to form Rainbow. They really took some liberty with a lot of these tunes, working off into other pieces nested in the middle of it. There was definitely a groove to this show and everyone was on fire here. I can’t recommend this live disc enough.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 6 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Burn

They fire out with the title track from the Burn album. I’ve always loved this song. This performance is certainly scorching hot, from the introduction to the powerhouse song proper. It’s such a great way to start the set. This is worth the price of admission all by itself. The instrumental section really screams, too.

Stormbringer
Another title track, this is another frantic and hard-edged rocker. It’s delivered with major style.
The Gypsy
Although perhaps not the powerhouse of the first two, the guitar soloing on this is particularly noteworthy. It’s still a great hard-edged tune. I like it a lot.
Lady Double Dealer
More high energy rock from Deep Purple, they just are not letting up at all in this set. This is another great rocker.
Mistreated
There’s an extended mellow introduction to this cut. I’ve always been a fan of this tune, but this isn’t my favorite rendition of it. It’s still pretty darned good, but I’ve heard better performances. It just seems to lack a little of the power and magic. I’m not completely sold on the mid-track instrumental section either. It has its charms, but seems to be missing some oomph.
Smoke on the Water
This is one of those Deep Purple songs that’s been played to death. I still like it, though. This performance brings some new flavors to the table, too. It’s a hot one, really. I really love the instrumental section on this and particularly the keyboard solo that’s part of it. I’m not crazy about the vocal workout, switch to a different song, though.
You Fool No One
The first two plus minutes here consists of a killer keyboard solo. Then it launches into the guitar riff driven song from there. This almost feels more like Uriah Heep than Deep Purple to me. It’s a good tune, but not one of the standouts here. The instrumental section is rocking like crazy, though. The second instrumental foray takes it into almost progressive rock territory, too.
Space Truckin'
This old chestnut gets an interesting introduction. First they do a little song bit that feels just a little like “Child in Time.” Then an instrumental section touches on music from “2001: A Space Odyssey.” From there, they take it to an almost Yes-like bit. Eventually they launch out into the song proper. At around the nine minute mark, they do, indeed work out into “Child of Time” musically. Then it shifts to a different jam from there. Glenn Hughes gets a bass solo. Then another song ensues that I don’t recognize. They take it out into almost progressive rock territory on an instrumental section later in the piece. It’s not until after the 18 minute mark that we’re brought back out into the song proper. While this is not my favorite live version of this, it’s got its merits. That’s for sure.
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