Archive for the ‘Albums’ Category

Sounds like…

March 19, 2021

Neil Young has been talking about a likely archive release of an album he cut in 2001 but shelved (“[It] was so sad that I couldn’t put it out. I just skipped it and went on to do another album in its place”). In doing so he refers to one track as being “like a Deep Purple hit”. This inspired Mark Maddock to hunt around for us and a live version from the time turned up. Called ‘Standing in the Light’ it’s not hard to see what Neil means! Even in bootleg form it sounds pretty good, so I’ll post and you can see how many seconds it’s takes to spot the influence.

Thanks to Mark for the story.

on lead vocals

March 12, 2021

There have been so many releases based around the Phenomena project by Tom Galley I confess I struggle to keep up, especially with all the reissues thereof. But this latest CD might have a place on your shelf as it brings together all the tracks featuring Glenn Hughes on lead vocals (as the cover sticker clearly indicates!). So if you never investigated this is as good a chance as any. The disc is out now, and our thanks to Stuart Hamilton for the info.

Micro Machines

January 12, 2021

It’s been a long time since this little collectable was featured in Darker Than Blue magazine! Steve Grover found it when he was on holiday in Australia in 1992 and brought it back as a souvenir (and teased me with it as soon as he got back). He has recently been trimming down his collection and decided this could go. He and I were both flabbergasted when it sold on ebay for over £900!
It turns out that MicroWheels are now becoming quite collectable as a brand; enough time has passed from their launch in 1987 for kids at the time to have reached that age when they enjoy collecting toys they had as a kid.
But what Steve didn’t realise is that this was very much a limited run, a series called Rockin’ Wheels, which was test marketed only in Australia. There were six bands featured, including Deep Purple and Whitesnake. As well as these six groups, a few more exist only as prototypes (Billy Idol being one, who thought that was a good idea?). Needless to say Steve rather wished he’d grabbed a few more, but it’s easy to be wise after the event, and the money will certainly pay for his next road trip (if we’re ever allowed such things again).
The Deep Purple set was licensed during the Joe Lynn Turner era from Bruce Payne, and so features graphics from the Slaves & Masters era. As the price Steve got shows, they are impossibly rare today. Even beat up played with examples fetch money and every collector’s site I visited out there has these in their ‘most wanted’ section.
Me, I shall stick to my early Matchbox toys. Though even there some of the prices are now out of my reach.

Danke

December 11, 2020

And here is the equivalent advert from the Germany music press (see post below for the British version). Third time in a row they have had the #1 Album in Germany (Now What?! – inFinite – Whoosh!). Thanks to Lutz Reinert for the image.

Christmas shopping

November 18, 2020

Well, I think we did suggest they would probably milk the Whoosh collectors more if they could and here we go, firstly with a special edition which “celebrates the chart success of the album”, aimed at anyone who hasn’t yet bought it. Titled the Hat-trick Edition it’s a CD set with all the usual bits on from before plus three patches and a fridge magnet! And a CD featuring the sound of a barrel being scraped? The snap here shows it in all its glory.

Meantime in Japan they have rounded up all the live extras off the limited editions which they are putting out on a new edition of Whoosh there, released on Christmas Day! This has a bonus disc of Live in Rio 2017 – but critically, this only contains the tracks from Rio already released on the 10″ vinyls from the Whoosh box set NOT the extras included on the HMV etc ‘exclusive’. My thanks to Tokyo Tim for the explainer. Needless to say we’d expect them to let us catch our breath and then push out a full Rio 2017 before very much longer.

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!