DEEP PURPLE GO EXPLORING WITH 'INFINITE'
Deep Purple: 'InFinite'
Released today (earMUSIC) 7th April 2017
Words: Mark Taylor
The twentieth studio album from the elder statesmen of rock and their sixth album with guitarist Steve Morse who has now been in the band for twenty-two years, almost half of Purple's astonishing and varied forty-nine year career.
Anyone still wishing that Deep Purple would make another 'In Rock' or 'Machine Head' needs to get their compass fixed, as this band have been travelling in an entire different direction for the past two decades on an expedition that knows no boundaries.
Deep Purple have never made the same album twice. As with every Purple album, 'InFinite' is a work of art that keeps on giving with each repeated listen.
Always keen to explore and to flavour new territories, the band have once again made an album that will be hotly debated amongst connoisseur fans yet bring in a new legion of younger fans who see the band in a completely different light.
Purple may well be travelling in their advancing twilight years but with that comes a wisdom and maturity that younger bands can only marvel at.
Produced by Bob Ezrin, the clarity and musicianship is top notch. Don Airey's Hammond work is more in a progressive vein and direct while Steve Morse has a unique fluid audacity that not only sets this line-up of Purple apart from their previous incarnations but also from any other rock band, given their own inimitable sound.
Drummer Ian Paice suffered a minor stroke last year but shows no signs of it while continuing to be the beat master who gives the band the room to manoeuvre while steering the ship through the ice and snow.
Roger Glover and Ian Gillan co-wrote the worldly lyrical content that stretches the mind into a vortex of imagination.
Ian Gillan recently said that he's become an angry man again and that is evident on the leading track, 'Time For Bedlam', which includes the thought provoking lyrics:
"Right from the ashes of life I learned to behave
What to believe, what not to say, from cradle to grave
Like a good little slave
Sucking my milk from the venomous tit of the state
This clearly designed to suppress every thought of escape
I surrender to fate."
Ian Gillan does his best Matt Monro impersonation as he croons, complete with expletives, on the swinging jazz number 'All I Got Is You'.
Gillan later gets poetic with 'On Top Of The World' with his skyscraping antics.
A real highlight is 'The Surprising', an explorative wanderlust slow number with a heavy midsection which will soon become a bonafide classic. A few gritty hard jams include 'Hip Boots' and 'Get Me Outta Here' and Purple have fun on the barroom thrill of 'One Night In Vegas' and the poppy 'Johnny's Band'.
'Birds Of Prey' is an intricate song featuring soaring guitar work from Steve Morse and there's a surprise tucked onto the end in the form of a cover version of The Doors' 'Roadhouse Blues', a song that has been covered by numerous acts, but Purple have done a laid back version here complete with harmonica from Gillan.
A challenging album for the casual listener but a rewarding one for the open minded.
A strong body of work from a band that refuses to rest on its laurels.
Deep Purple Tour Dates:
Saturday 13th May: Romexpo, Bucharest, Romania
Sunday 14th May: Arena Armeec Sofia, Bulgaria
Tuesday 16th May: Arena Zagreb, Croatia
Wednesday 17th May: Wiener Stadthalle, Vienna, Austria
Friday 19th May: Olympiahalle, München, Germany
Saturday 20th May: Geneva Arena, Grand-Saconnex, Switzerland
Monday 22nd May: O2 Arena, Czechia
Tuesday 23rd May: Atlas Arena, Lodz, Poland
Wednesday 24th May: Spodek, Katowice, Poland
Saturday 27th May: Rockhal, Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg
Tuesday 30th May: Barclaycard Arena, Hamburg, Germany
Thursday 1st June: Zenith Arena Lille, Lille, France
Friday 2nd June: Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Saturday 3rd June: AccorHotels Arena, Paris, France
Tuesday 6th June: Lanxess Arena, Cologne, Germany
Wednesday 7th June: Westfalenhalle 1, Dortmund, Germany
Friday 9th June: Arena Leipzig, Germany
Saturday 10th June: Festhalle Messe Frankfurt GmbH, Germany
Tuesday 13th June: Mercedes-Benz Arena Berlin, Germany
Wednesday 14th June: Hanns-Martin-Schleyer-Halle, Stuttgart, Germany
Friday 16th June: Nantes, France
Saturday 17th June: Graspop Metal Meeting, Dessel, Belgium
Sunday 18th June: Hellfest, Clisson, France
Thursday 22nd June: Palalottomatica, Rome, Italy
Saturday 24th June: Rock the Ring GmbH, Hinwil, Switzerland
Monday 26th June: Unipol Arena, Casalecchio di Reno, Bologna, Italy
Tuesday 27th June: Mediolanum Forum, Assago, Milan, Italy
Wednesday 28th June: Salle des Étoiles, Monaco-Ville, Monaco
Friday 30th June: Bilbao, Spain
Saturday 1st July: Barcelona, Spain
Monday 3rd July: WiZink Center, Madrid, Spain
Tuesday 4th July: MEO Arena, Lisbon, Portugal
Saturday 12th August: The Chelsea, Las Vegas, USA
Sunday 13th August: The Greek Theatre, Los Angeles, USA
Tuesday 15th August: AK-Chin Pavilion, Phoenix, AZ, USA
Wednesday 16th August: Isleta Ampitheater, Albuquerque
Friday 18th August: The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, Woodlands, Texas, USA
Saturday 19th August: Starplex Pavilion, Dallas, USA
Monday 21st August: Monaco Chastain Ampitheatre, Atlanta, GA, USA
Wednesday 23rd August: Bristow, VA, USA
Thursday 24th August: BB&T Pavilion, Camden, NJ, USA
Saturday 26th August: Nikon AT Jones Beach Theater, Wantagh, NY USA
Sunday 27th August: Mansfield MA, USA
Monday 28th August: PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, NJ, USA
Wednesday 30th August: Klipsch Music Center, Noblesville, IN, USA
Friday 1st September: Keybank Pavilion, Burgettstown, PA, USA
Saturday 2nd September: Canada Budweiser Stage, Toronto, ON, USA
Sunday 3rd September: DTE Energy Music Theater, Clarkson, MI, USA
Wednesday 6th September: Hollywood Casino Ampitheatre, Tinley Park, IL, USA
Friday 8th September: Hollywood Casino Ampitheatre, Maryland Heights, MO, USA
Saturday 9th September: Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, OH, USA
Sunday 10th September: Riverbend Music Center, Cincinatti, OH, USA
Tuesday 6th November: Annexe, Stockholm, Sweden
Thursday 8th November: Trondheim, Spektrum, Norway
Friday 9th November: Oslo Spektrum, Norway
Saturday 11th November: Ice Hall, Helsinki, Finland
Monday 13th November: Valby Hallen, Copenhagen, Denmark
Friday 17th November: The Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham
Saturday 18th November: Manchester Arena
Monday 20th November: Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
Wednesday 22nd November: SSE Hydro, Glasgow
Thursday 23rd November: O2, London