Deep Purple - MMRDA Grounds,
Bandra-Kurla Complex, Mumbai, India.
3rd May 2002

"Around 9pm last night at the MMRDA Grounds, Bandra-Kurla Complex, Steve Morse began having a ball. He played a medley of quickfire riffs, taking the audience completely by surprise. There were bits, pieces and even lengthy snatches of 'Day Tripper', 'Sweet Child Of Mine', 'Money For Nothing', 'Honky Tonk Women' and 'Stairway To Heaven'. And, just in case you thought he'd temporarily forgotten he was playing for Deep Purple, he quickly moved into the group's classic 'Smoke On The Water', with vocalist Ian Gillan suddenly taking charge.

Everyone knew the group wouldn't leave before playing 'Smoke On The Water', but the way they kicked off the song was a supreme example of live showmanship. The rest of the concert had many highs and a few lows. The most positive thing was the sheer power. From 'Woman From Tokyo' at 7.50 pm, until they concluded with 'Highway Star' at 9.35 pm, the band displayed a level of energy equivalent to a thermal power station. The songs 'Hush',' Black Night' and 'Perfect Strangers' wowed the hard-rockers.There were times when the group moved into a slower and more experimental mode. 'Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming' with its varying tempos and 'When A Blind Man Cries' provided a change of pace. Each member contributed to the charm. 56-year-old Gillan was unbelievably agile and supple-voiced. Morse's guitar playing was an amazing blend of aggression and aesthetics. Ian Paice and Roger Glover were both tight and bang on target. Keyboardist Don Airey had a few good moments - though one clearly missed the charisma of his predecessor Jon Lord.

Where the band disappointed was in the selection of songs in the first 45 minutes or so. Yes, they played 'Ted The Mechanic', 'The Aviator' and 'The Well-Dressed Guitar' rather smoothly. But surely, the crowd was looking for more familiar material all through. Perhaps, in the attempt to showcase their newer songs, the group omitted much-awaited masterpieces such as 'Child In Time'. That, probably, will always remain a problem with great bands like Deep Purple. One can never be satisfied with a 100-minute show. The way the musicians played last night, they only proved they're never too old to rock 'n' rule."
review by
Narendra Kusnur,
Mid-Day newspaper, Bombay

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