It's been about 7 years since we've had new music from Deep Purple. The band was rejuvenated back in '96 when they enlisted guitar maestro Steve Morse to take over the axe duties. Since he joined the band, they've released 4 studio albums as well as a slew of live records, but while the band still actively tours, it has not recorded any new tunes in a while; the latest release from the band is actually a re-release of a live recording they did back in '99 with the Mark VII line-up, featuring a show recorded in Australia in support of the Abandon record. Originally released in a 2-disc format, the re-release has the show reduced to one disc.
Total Abandon is a good show which really shows off the talents of Morse. This CD is a wankfest for guitarists; Morse has several moments to shine on this disc and does - check out the solo on Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming and you'll hear what I mean. The set list is a combination of new and old material and I have to say it was refreshing hearing some of the newer material live. The band is firing on all cylinders and sounds great. There are a few shaky moments in the vocal department, but that is to be expected give the age of Ian Gillan. I'm sure it gets more difficult each year to hit those high notes he did back in the day. All in all not a bad listen. Give this one a few spins before you make judgment, because it gets better with time.
Bottom Line: Deep Purple showing that they can still do it live - well at least in '99. The band is sounding strong with the exception of Gillan in a few areas.
- Ragman liked this one better than he thought he would...