What should I write about Deep Purple, “Perfect Strangers”, the MK II line up, the constant rivalry between Gillan and Blackmore that is not already widely known to almost everyone? These are all well documented through the years. But I am sure that not everybody was aware of the fact that there was a professional audiovisual recording of a concert from that historical tour and it becomes now available toa ll the Purple fans. And if some of us had in their collection the bootleg of Paris 1985, then now is the chance to acquire something far more technically improved and qualitative.
This double CD and DVD captures Purple on stage in Melbourne in December 1984. Forget the bad blood in Birmingham in 1993, let aside the anemic concerts of 1987-88 and remember the best of times regarding the MK II line up. This is a band absolutely on fire with all its members in top form and in great spirits. It is wonderful (almost euphoric) to see Blackmore and Gillan smiling at each other and having clearly the time of their lives on stage. It’s a unique feeling to be sonically treated with the “new” songs of that era: “Under The Gun”, “A Gypsy’s Kiss”, Knockin’ At Your Back Door”, “Nobody’s Home” and “Perfect Strangers”. The set list is based on three albums (“In Rock”, “Machine Head”, “Perfect Strangers”) and it actually leaves you a bittersweet feeling as you get to see on the one hand a well-oiled machine but at the same time you witness the Man In Black playing guitar like there’s no tomorrow and you have no other alternative than to curse all the medieval traditional instruments, the blonde siren, the tight outfits that have seduced Ritchie in…Middle Earth!
If you choose to check something on YouTube let me suggest the phenomenal live versions of “Under The Gun” and “Space Truckin” whereas Ritchie simply proves why he once was the best guitarist in the world; literally, the only one who combined technique, feeling and improvisation. So, just in case you haven’t figured it out yet, you buy this album without any second thoughts!
Highlight: Ritchie Blackmore – Ritchie Blackmore – Ritchie Blackmore