Archive for the ‘Albums’ Category

Trainspotting

September 9, 2020

Mark Besley has joined the DTB trainspotters society with this snap by his wife taken at Trowbridge Station as she whooshed by… (that’s whooshed by as in privatised rail speak for not going very fast!).

Meanwhile John McEvoy was checking out the rivals to Sainsbury’s (see post below) and saw that Tesco are price matching them on Whoosh, but have sat in in amongst a zillion greatest hits collections, clearly not aware that it is in fact new material.

Meanwhile Simon did wonder if Edel had been throwing money at the Tour de France – “I saw a Whoosh logo on some of the shirts the other day, but it turns out to be the name of an electric bike brand in the UK!” Mind you their logo makes DPs cover look positively inspired… Simon’s just had an email subject matter ‘Purple Chopper” too: “I was afraid to look but it turned out to be a fab original purple Chopper bike Steve Clare had seen in his local antique shop and was trying to crowbar into the Machine Head book.”

Topping

August 24, 2020

Simon spotted Deep Purple in his local Sainbury’s chart rack at number 10, bravely doing battle with a cheapo Doris Day Collection at number 9! Meantime, David Browne – who has sort of slipped into the role of charting the rise and rise of Whoosh for us (and future historians!) – says the list of top ten entries has grown over the past week (see below).

#1 Germany

#1 Finland

#1 Belgium (Wallonia)

#1 Scotland

#1 Austria

#1 Switzerland

#2 Poland

#2 Czech Republic

#3 Hungary

#3 Sweden

#3 Norway

#4 UK (highest chart entry in 46 years)

#4 Japan (International)

#6 Italy

#7 Belgium (Flanders)

#7 Netherlands

#8 France

#8 Denmark

#13 Australia

The one which is puzzling him and us is the US Billboard chart. But if you look at what they call their Top Album Sales (which they describe as “a pure album sales chart” and mixes all genres) then Whoosh comes straight in at No. 11 (just below ‘Now 75!’). They will find it tough going as it is one of SIX new entries. As for how it compares with previous reunion albums? Scroll down.

David also thought to look back at reunion album positions in Billboard and this charts a real u-turn now, with positions dropping steadily to Battle, and then creeping back up. He also points out that the last Deep Purple album to get higher than #11 in the US album sales chart was (according to the old DP discography!) : Burn #9, which mimics the position in Britain.

Titles which do not appear didn’t make it into the Top 200 chart at all, so a huge chunk of the catalogue is missing.

Staggers pronounces.

August 19, 2020

“DEEP PURPLE have reached a stage of mastership that is unprecedented in the history of rock music. No doubt, this is a legendary album and will once be counted among the classics of rock music…” KNAC Rock Radio website review. While back in the UK: “How depressing that in their seventies Deep Purple are much, much better at arena rawk than, say, Kasabian…” Yes, even the sad old Spectator Magazine gets all grudging in their praise. So, without wishing to sideline TMS statistician Andy_Zaltzman, here is the current state of play.

Whoosh is now Deep Purple’s highest charting studio album in 46 years… since “Burn” in 1974.

Number 1 Physical Artist Album sales / no: 4 Main Chart
Number 1 Top 100 albums (excepting streaming sales)
Number 1 Independent Album
Number 1 Rock and Metal
Number 1 Scottish Albums (don’t let Nicola know!)

And “Whoosh!” has reached the Top 10 in a 12 countries worldwide – with more apparently to come.

1 Germany
1 Finland
1 Belgium (Wallonia)
1 Scotland

2 Czech Republic

3 Sweden
3 Norway
4 UK (highest chart entry in 46 years)
4 Japan (International)
6 Italy
7 Belgium (Flanders)
7 Netherlands
8 France

Thanks to Adrian Tredinnick their UK publicist for the info, he had this thank-you message off the band:
“Your energy, professionalism and devotion to the cause has been building throughout the ‘Now What’ and ‘Infinite’ campaigns and all that has paid off with this explosion of effort that we have been watching and admiring whilst doing our phoners for the latest album. Who would have thought that – this late in our career – we would have been having such an experience? It is quite incredible.

These large billboards have been turning up on the transit systems across Germany, thanks to Pericle for the snap. Find room in your den for that!

Thanks also to David Browne for his help who tells me the album has just tipped up in the Billboard chart at 161. “Whoosh! is at #20 in the Billboard US Rock charts, behind no less than 13 compilation albums…. The Beatles, Elton John, Queen, The Eagles, Journey etc, and 4 re-releases: including, of course, Rumours.” Reminds me of those far off days when Led Zeppelin were kept off the number one album spot by the Top Of The Pops covers collections!

Factoid time • Amazingly it will be FIFTY YEARS since Deep Purple first got to number one in Germany in October 1970 with you know what. I can’t see sales in this day and age holding out for another eight weeks there but that is still quite a close anniversary.
One album listener has asked “have any other DP devotees experienced an audio ‘glitch’ at 2′ 22″ in ‘Dancing In My Sleep’ on the audiobook version?” I’ve only heard the digital wav files and didn’t notice anything, but do let us know.

Martin Birch. RIP.

August 10, 2020

Or should I say Martin Birchtree, Enginearole, as he was memorably credited on one Machine Head tape reel…

1970 was a cracking year to be let loose in the record shops, seeing how far my pocket money would go. I bought Deep Purple In Rock of course (Engineer on Hard Lovin’ Man? Martin Birch) but did explore other bands, and one of the first singles I picked up was Fleetwood Mac’s Green Manalishi. Engineer? Martin Birch.
A mate at school then brought Thank Christ For The Bomb along to play a track from one day (in form assembly of all places) by The Groundhogs (to be outdone by Split later that year, an astonishing audio experience). Engineer? Martin Birch. Another lad was raving about the track Phoenix by a new band called Wishbone Ash. Engineer? Martin Birch.
And that was just 1970.
What I’m trying to say is that Martin’s name has been on my radar most of my music buying life. And the same happened with the next generation of rock fans as his credit began to appear on a raft of post-Deep Purple projects like Whitesnake, Rainbow and PAL. The following wave of heavy metal again drew on Martin’s skills, in particular Iron Maiden (though by now he was credited as Producer, Engineer, Mixer, Tape Op and Technician!). After which he hung up the earphones in his early 40s and left the business.
Despite that early retirement, the extensive list of studio projects he got through is remarkable when you start to look carefully through it, albeit for many Deep Purple fans it is Machine Head which will be the one he is probably most remembered for. I and a few others have literally been going over every felt pen mark on the album’s tape boxes this last week or so to try and glean the tiniest bit of new information from them for the upcoming biography. Indeed it is with a heavy heart that I will close the file on my laptop where I had begun a list of niggling questions I was hoping to put to him shortly (Derek Lawrence called him up last year on my behalf – they’d kept in touch, explained what we wanted, and got an OK to call, on the proviso to “tell him I’m very unlikely to remember anything very much!”).
The sixth member of Deep Purple? It’s a soubriquet which he certainly deserved thanks to his handling the rest of Deep Purple’s classic era (and in a couple of cases even beyond).
It’s unusual for studio personnel to become as well known as the musicians they work for, but judging from the astonishing coverage Martin Birch’s passing (at just 71) has generated among the papers and news sites today, as well as rock fans, we’re not the only ones for whom his work has resonated so strongly.

In Rock Hard

July 6, 2020

The latest issue of Planet Rock magazine (21) manages to get in a few Deep Purple releases as part of a bit Top 100 Live Albums feature. Mike Galway has spotted (in reverse order!) 50 – On Stage, full page with nice pic of Ritchie and Japanese ticket. 47 – Made In Europe.  30 – Live in the Heart of the City, full page picture of Coverdale. And best of all at No. 1 – Made In Japan with a four page feature.
Mike says it’s “a nice feature which somebody has obviously put some thought into – which makes a nice change”. The magazine is a tie in with Planet Rock radio but has never really found a niche that marks it out from other rock magazines, and this will be it’s final issue.

Rock Hard 398.jpg

Meanwhile in Germany Rock Hard magazine finally bow to common sense and go with what we’re told is their first Deep Purple cover feature (it’s taken them nearly 400 issues!), though they didn’t go very far for the cover shot, one of the most used of all time. Inside according to John Tucker they have a 12 page feature, interviews with Steve Morse and Ian Paice, a piece on books about the band, what looks like a retrospective and a section on ‘In Rock’ to mark the anniversary.

I’m afraid I had to look up the cover word, only to discover it has it’s own flipping wikipedia page! From un- +‎ kaputt +‎ -bar. The word – which means indestructable – “was used first in 1990 in an advertising campaign. It intentionally violates the grammar rules by using the suffix -bar with the adjective kaputt despite of the fact that this suffix is only used to build adjectives from verbs (e.g. unkaputtmachbar). This made the word sound somewhat funny with the purpose of drawing attention.” So now we know!

Rock in the charts

June 21, 2020

LP charts June 21 1970 Deep Purple

Contrived headlines of our times. But Fifty years ago today (June 21st) Deep Purple In Rock belted up to the number 4 slot in the British album charts. They had properly arrived.  And while the album didn’t climb any higher here, it was still in the top ten come the new year. And what was preventing it from getting higher? Well Bridge Over Troubled Water was just unstoppable with 33 weeks at number one alone, a figure it is hard to even get your head round these days. It had even usurped the Let It Be album from getting back to number one. Then Paul McCartney’s solo album which again was just firmly lodged at the top for weeks on end.  But interesting to see a top ten comprised such important and interesting albums, and great to see Deep Purple right there amongst them.

And while it isn’t brand new, here’s another nice In Rock themed cover, this time from one of those Japanese potted black and white paperback (and pocket sized) histories which appear quite regularly. It’s published by Kawade if you want to try and root it out online (we could not find an ISBN).  While we’re on it, if you remember a flashy Deep Purple Collection book issued in Japan many years ago, the author and owner of the collection is proposing an updated edition. As a collector myself it was an interesting book, and every release was illustrated (though the photos were very small) but equally it was far from complete (as few collections are!). More news on this when we have it.

Japan In Rock paperback

 

24 with a bullet

June 14, 2020

deep-purple-in-rock-review

Fifty years ago today (June 14th 1970), Deep Purple In Rock entered the British album charts at 24. It was a significant moment. Although the Concerto had just sneaked in, peaking at 26 in January (and in doing so becoming their first ever top thirty album), this time sales were indicating to EMI that In Rock was set to do much better. The band had really done the groundwork on the road over the previous ten months and were continuing to support the album with a series of one-nighters here and in Germany during June. The single Black Night, released on the same day as the album, was however still struggling but that would eventually change.
People are still marking the anniversary in nice ways. The picture above is from a site called Now Spinning, and one of their editors Phil Aston has written fondly about his memories of buying the album on cassette back in 1973…

https://nowspinning.co.uk/deep-purple-in-rock-memories-of-a-classic-album/

Another nice personal feature which I enjoyed is the one below written by Nedim Hassan:

https://www.getintothis.co.uk/2020/06/deep-purple-in-rock-the-hard-rock-classic-nears-its-50th-anniversary/

More In Rock magazine covers are turning up; German magazine MINT (Magazin Für Vinyl-Kultur), issue No.36, 05/20, has used the anniversary as an excuse to devote 40 (!) pages to the band albeit ranging far and wide rather than focusing on In Rock, including an album guide, a feature on Machine Head, Ian Gillan discussing Vanilla Fudge, Steve Morse on The Well-Tempered Synthesizer, Ian Paice talking about Gene Krupa, a feature on the third album cover art by Hieronymus Bosch, etc! And an extra tick for their designer who sneaked in the issue number using Burn imagery. Anyhow, Lutz Reinert who alerted us to it, says we can get it direct by mail order (€8 inside or €9 outside Germany including postage and package): https://www.mintmag.de/

MINT Nr.36, 05.20

SHVL777

June 5, 2020

 

I’d not forgotten that we have rolled around to an important anniversary, honest. Just shocked to realise we’d got the date wrong for all these years…! Seriously. It’s not so easy to find something new to say, particularly as I’ve been raving about this album for fifty years now myself. Many of us have studied the ins and outs of the band’s formation and marvelled at the moments of serendipity which led to these five guys being in the same room at Hanwell together where they started to create this amazing piece of work. But I still feel having had it there on the shelf as part of my music collection all that time has been such a privilege really.
Sometimes you play a bit of vintage music and it sounds fifty years old. It’s not a problem, you appreciate the track in the context of the times and go with it. I never feel that this album sounds old – it just feels of the moment whenever I play it. It’s a massively difficult trick to pull this off, and doesn’t happen very often in the world of rock.
So I was casting around for something to mark the occasion and thought it would just be good to throw in the opening screams of noise which herald Hard Lovin’ Man to deafen everyone who logged on today. Then I looked for a way to do this and found the audio to listen to while I had my thinking cap on. Now many are probably like me and ignore or avoid the below the line comments which people idly chuck into the white space below each YouTube clip. It can be a bit of a graveyard of futile ramblings at times but I started looking and then got stuck into it.
There it all was, people just coming together and sharing their admiration for this one track, together with many of the reasons why it continues to rattle round our heads so memorably. So I pottered through and just red penned some of my favourites. I didn’t save names as most people don’t use them when posting anyway. You’ll know who you are. I know who some of you are. But we share this wonderful appreciation together.
Thank you Ritchie Blackmore, Ian Gillan, Ian Paice and Roger Glover. And Jon Lord, don’t think you’re getting away. Imperious.

PS The fact that at the end it went right into an ad for funeral plans was a bit of a back to the real world with a jolt moment. Be ready with the mute button in case.

Simon • Darker Than Blue

In Rock is the best rock album ever made in my opinion. Hard Lovin’ Man is a killer track! Awesome!

Those organ notes are – brutal.

I’m quite sure that what Jon does to that poor Hammond is illegal in at least 30 States.

Ian Paice carries this track at 100 mph throughout. Brilliant drumming!

In Rock has to be one of my all time fav albums…beginning to end. And this tune was the baddest of em all.

15 years ahead of its time. This song is a slasher.

To me, this is and will always be Purple’s best album. Better even than Machine Head and Made In Japan. And that’s saying something.

In Rock was the very first proper heavy rock album before 1970; all the big names turned out albums with rock interlaced with blues tracks [but] Deep Purple threw down the gauntlet with this all killer no filler album. The first album I ever bought and played the grooves off it.

And it took until December 2015 to get them into the hall of fame?

One of the greatest rock songs ever.

Everything is said here, the rest is a footnote.

The first speed metal song in history – wonderful.

Absolutely unparalleled, beyond compare, nothing before or since has ever been anywhere near as good as these guys.

No comments. Deep Purple.

This is an example of the GENRE created by Mark 2 with this monumental album. A genre which only they ever played. Mark 2 was both the greatest and saddest story in rock. For the short time they were together these five were quite simply the greatest group of pure rock musicians ever.

Two words… Jon Lord.

I bloody love this track. Ritchie’s constant guitar work is outstanding.

This is beyond words.

And on for 300 more comments in a similar vein…. and you can of course read more in the book which tells the story of the album, Wait For The Ricochet.

SONY DSC

Man Alive

May 5, 2020

Deep Purple have posted the second full track off their upcoming album (release date now August 7th), six weeks after the first appeared (where is time going?).  This one is a moody concept track titled Man Alive which sort of defies description (and is nothing to do with the memorable – to some oldies – Tony Hatch TV theme), complete with Richard Burton-esque spoken snippets from IG, and lyrics which you would assume were written after the virus broke not months before: “Don was experimenting with an oboe to do a haunting, repetitive little piece to illustrate the echoes of emptiness. So I just started speaking at the microphone and it fit perfectly. It just had to be something that wasn’t sung – it was almost like a voice bubble attached to the song. It just seemed to be the right thing to do.”

It’ll be interesting to see how this fits in the the album as a whole. And no crude remarks as to the colour of the oboe here you will note. Meanwhile as expected Deep Purple’s tour dates have ALL been put back to 2021, clearly a sensible move in the current uncertain times.

The best version of the video seems to be the one linked direct to YouTube, some others had poor audio. Thanks to Mark Maddock, Tim Summers and many more.

There’s a link to the earlier track Throw My Bones on the site below.

Folded

April 15, 2020

Ian Gillan posted out this rather nice shot taken in the plant where the album sleeves are produced.  It shows a neat stack of sleeves just off the printing press, prior to going onto the folding machine to be scored and made into sleeves.  The sleeves look to have been printed three up and then the sheet has been cut twice to prepare them for the next stage.  Ask Simon nicely one day and he will show you a sheet just like this for the Japanese cover of Live In Japan which he was inordinately pleased to be given on one visit to the Purple offices years ago…

Whoosh sleeve.jpg