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Forum » Videos » Videos en DVD » Deep Purple - Come Hell or High Water (2001) ((DVD9))
Deep Purple - Come Hell or High Water (2001)
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Deep Purple - Come Hell or High Water (2001)

Video: PAL, MPEG-2 at 5 983 Kbps, 720 x 576 at 25.000 fps | Audio: AC-3 6ch. at 448 Kbps, AC-3 2ch. at 448 Kbps
Genre: Rock |Label: Sony | Copy: Untouched | Release Date: 23 April 2001 | Runtime: 120 min. | 6,76 GB (DVD9)

When Deep Purple's The Battle Rages On Tour reached Birmingham, England on
November 9, 1993, it had already taken in most of Europe. Starting off
in Italy and moving around Germany, France and Benelux, it reached the
band's home country for a triumphant four sold out shows, one of which
would be filmed for the "Come Hell Or High Water" DVD and video. Rumours
of Deep Purple not entirely being best pals were floating around within
the fan community, but the fact that Deep Purple was in fact on the
verge of a break-up only became obvious at the band's final explosive
British show in Birmingham.
Reports from the shows on the European continent told of incredibly
successful shows with sold out venues everywhere. On the good nights,
Deep Purple were as strong as they'd ever been. The performances were
electric and powerful, incorporating a fair number of songs off the
latest album - "Talk About Love", "A Twist In The Tale", the show
stopper "Anya" and the masterful title track "The Battle Rages On" -
plus a selection of classics including the intensity building show
opener "Highway Star", "Black Night", the majestic "Perfect Strangers",
complete with stunning lasers, "Knocking At Your Back Door", an
elongated "Child In Time", a frantic "Lazy", a medley of "Space
Truckin'", "Woman From Tokyo" and Rolling Stones' "Paint It Black"
(which Deep Purple used to employ as a vehicle for Ian Paice's drum solo
in the early 70's), and the inevitable "Smoke On The Water". Some
nights the encores included both "Hush" and "Speed King". The first time
the band played "Hush" on this tour was in Frankfurt. Ian Gillan
obviously wasn't prepared for this, humming his way through what he
initially thought was nothing but an impromptu jam, not twigging
something was amiss till the crowd in front of him started singing the
"naa-na-na-naa" bit! The most surprising inclusion in the 1993 set list
was "Anyone's Daughter" off the "Fireball" album, which the band had
only ever played live very briefly in 1971. In 1993 it featured Ian
Paice coming to the front of the stage to play tambourine - often
introduced by Ian Gillan as Elton John (think about it - the resemblance
is there!).
Often the shows were fraught with nerves and doubts of would-he
wouldn't-he alluding to Blackmore's unpredictable mood swings. On the
good nights his playing was otherworldly and he seemed unable to stop
himself. On the bad nights it was merely a going-through-the-motions
thing. There was obvious strife between Blackmore and Gillan, with the
singer treading on eggshells so as not to provoke an incident. It was a
well known fact that Blackmore had strongly objected to Ian Gillan's
return to the band, but such had been the insistence by the other three
members that he'd had no choice. At the first two Italian shows,
"Strange Kind Of Woman" was played, but when Ian tried adding his bit to
the classic guitar-voice chase, Blackmore stopped playing. In an
attempt to make amends with the guitarist, Ian Gillan would come into
Blackmore's dressing room after the gigs to congratulate him on a great
show and try to strike up a conversation. Blackmore just stared at him
and after the first few shows Gillan gave up his mission. Blackmore on
the other hand claims Ian Gillan frequently forgot or ignored singing
large parts of the songs, much to Blackmore's disapproval. The
guitarist's insistence on professionalism sounds strangely hollow in
view of what was to come.
The shows had many highlights. "Anya" would often see Blackmore
signalling the band to stop and he'd go off doodling away endlessly in a
world of his own. The same thing also happened in "Knocking At Your
Back Door". It can be argued that this was just Blackmore treating Deep
Purple as his backing band, but the rest of the band rose to the
occasion giving him fierce competition and never letting up.
Jon Lord's long solo spots would seethe with improvisation as he
sprinkled them with little classical quotes and tastes of the odd local
national anthem. Ian Paice and Roger Glover were energetic and right
there behind the soloists, and when it came time for his drum solo, Ian
Paice seemed to grow extra arms and gain stamina. Ian Gillan kept a lid
on his hitherto much loved stream-of-consciousness nonsense between the
songs - perhaps in an effort to not upstage the guitarist. The shows in
Frankfurt, Essen, Stuttgart and Paris were already touted as upcoming
bootleg classics (were the bootlegs ever to appear), and among the
travelling fan base, each had his or her own favourite show. This
reporter had already attended the first half of the German shows, and
would ultimately take in a dozen shows in all, including the British
shows and the final show in Helsinki.
Arriving in Britain, Ian Gillan was interviewed on national radio and
asked about the current status within the band. Mindful of the imminent
English shows he stated that the feeling in the dressing room hadn't
been so good since the early 70's. He failed to say how this was true
for only four-fifths of the band as Ritchie Blackmore always kept to
himself in a different dressing room and never spent much time with the
rest of the band. (After the show in Essen one fan asked him when he
would next see Ian Gillan - "Tomorrow night onstage.")
According to people who were there, it had come to a stand-off between
Blackmore and Gillan at the show in Brussels three nights later on
November 2. Ian Gillan allegedly kept singing through one of Ritchie's
solos and later, when Gillan was getting the crowd to sing along to a
quiet bit in "Smoke On The Water", Blackmore wouldn't stop playing. The
situation nearly got physical as Gillan only barely managed to contain
himself when the guitarist came close to his microphone stand.
A Japanese six-date tour had already been announced for December, but to
prove his decision to leave, Blackmore tore up his Japanese visa after
the show in Rotterdam and told the crew the Japanese dates were
cancelled. Little did he expect that this time the band would not let
themselves be pulled around by their collective noses.
The initial British show in Manchester on November 5 was a good one, but
the first London show two nights later at Brixton Academy was a bland
and disappointing affair. The next day, Ritchie Blackmore took his
Swedish tech and a bunch of fans and journalists to London's Hurlingham
Park to stretch out in a game of football. "Tonight can only be better,"
he said. He proved himself right as the second London show that night
turned into one of the very best performances Deep Purple did on the
whole tour.
For the following night's show in Birmingham, all the stops had been
pulled - at least video production wise. There were at least three
cameras dotted around the audience, plus one in the pit in front of the
stage and two handheld on either side of the stage. The resulting video
"Come Hell Or High Water", now out on DVD, is a near-faithful
reproduction of the show excellently produced and directed. However, the
opening of the show and "Highway Star" have been heavily edited in an
attempt to cover up what happened during those first few minutes. (The
first encore of "Hush" was also edited out.)
As the introduction tape was played over the PA, and the lasers picked
out the DP logo and the battling dragons on the backdrop, all cameras
fired up. Ian Paice arrived onstage and started the signature snare drum
beat of "Highway Star", and soon Roger Glover, Jon Lord and Ian Gillan
joined him onstage. It took a while to register that Blackmore was
missing. He appeared briefly by his amplifiers, then ran off again. What
was going on? The band started looking around, the intro to "Highway
Star" still brewing. Confusion. No one seemed to know what was
happening, least of all the band. Still with no sign of Blackmore, Ian
Gillan signalled for the band to start the song proper. Looking slightly
pissed off, they made their way through the first two verses in style,
trying to cover up. But when it came to Jon Lord's solo, Blackmore still
hadn't turned up. Without the rhythm guitar to back him up, Jon's solo
sounded a bit thin. The second verse ensued and by now confusion was
clearly spreading among the audience. Where was Ritchie?
As it turned out, he'd arrived onstage, ready to begin the show, when
he'd spotted the handheld camera in the wings of his side of the stage.
Perhaps mindful of past experiences with onstage cameras, he ran
offstage and demanded the camera be removed immediately. The one in the
pit in front of the stage also bothered him and was quickly pointed
downwards and wouldn't be seen working again during the rest of the
By the end of the third verse, when it was time for the guitar solo,
Blackmore finally appeared. He doodled aimlessly, clearly not into the
performance, and edged sideways across the stage towards Roger Glover.
On Jon Lord's side of the stage was another handheld camera, providing
excellent close-up shots of the keyboard player's fingers and hands
(check out the film for proof), but this also bothered the guitarist. He
later claimed to have agreed to the filming of the show on the
condition that no cameras were onstage or between the band and the
audience. Others claim this is nonsense.
Picking up a large plastic cup of water, Ritchie moved in closer and
lobbed the full cup towards the camera on Jon's side. The camera was out
of view from the audience, but very close to where Ian Gillan was
minding his own business on the congas as he often does during guitar
and organ solos. Consequently, from the audience's point of view, as the
cup of water hurtled through the air, passing close over Gillan's head,
it looked like Blackmore had been aiming it at the singer. It's been
over seven years now, but this fan can still remember feeling at once
sick, sad and angry at this seemingly obvious act of aggression. The
show is reviewed elsewhere, but suffice to say the mood was spoiled and
it took a lot of hard work from the band to get the crowd going again.
In the end the show wasn't bad at all, but it hadn't been one of the
best of the tour either.
At the end of the show, Ian Paice frisbee'd autographed drumheads into
the crowd and Ian Gillan thanked the British fans for 25 years of
dedication. It was a touching moment. Backstage, the atmosphere was less
inspiring. Blackmore was, as always, secluded in his own room with his
girlfriend. His personal assistant was running in and out, barely
opening the door wide enough to let himself through. Ian Paice was being
interviewed for TV (or was it for the DVD and video?) in a crowded
little room with a circular peek hole in the door. Rumours of doom were
rife, some suggesting the band had just then fired Blackmore. No one had
yet heard of the goings-on in Prague and anything seemed believable.
Frustration was apparent. At the same time, the band had prominent
guests to attend to.
For the British dates tension was running high within the band, as only a
few nights before, after a show in Prague on October 30, Ritchie
Blackmore had resigned from Deep Purple. He had instructed tour manager
Colin Hart to read out a letter to the rest of the band. In the letter
Blackmore had announced he was tired of Deep Purple and would leave the
band after the last European date in Helsinki, Finland on November 17 - a
two-week notice.

01. Highway Star [3:16]
02. Black Night [7:27]
03. Talk About Love [5:08]
04. Twist in the Tale [5:19]
05. Perfect Strangers [4:12]
06. Beethoven [8:37]
07. Knocking at your Back Door [12:41]
08. Anyone's Daughter [7:53]
09. Child In Time [4:18]
10. Anya [1:14]
11. The Battle Rages On [9:47]
12. Lazy [8:23]
13. Space Truckin' [7:44]
14. Women From Tokyo [7:14]
15. Paint it Black [2:50]
16. Smoke On the Water [2:22]

- Interviews
- Biographies: Ian Gillan; Jon Lord; Ian Paice; Roger Glover; Ritchie Blackmore
- Lyrics

- Direct Scene Access
- Interactive Menu

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