Deep Purple – ‘Live in London’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)

In 1982, Deep Purple didn’t exist, no new music was coming for a few more years, but the world needed a brand new Live album by the band.  Or at least that is what the record company thought.  This live album was really not new, it was only newly released. It was recorded back in 1974 with the Mark III line-up of the following:

  • Richie Blackmore – guitar
  • David Coverdale – lead vocals
  • Glenn Hughes – Bass and vocals
  • Jon Lord – keyboards
  • Ian Paice – drums

The album was recorded on May 22, 1974 at the Gaumont State Theatre in London, England and was used a BBC Radio Broadcast but never actually saw the light of day on a physical release until 8 years later. The tour was for the album “Burn” which is where a majority of the songs will come from.

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Like with most Deep Purple Live albums, there are only a handful of songs as some of the songs last an eternity.  You get 6 whole songs on the original release and when they do the re-issues years later you are blessed with getting a whole other song that adds over 30 minutes to the time…yep…one song at 30 minutes.  Wow!!

Since there is really no story behind this album, there is no band currently in existence, Whitesnake is out doing their own thing, we might as well get right to the music.

Side One:

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The album opens up with the introduction for the “Loudest Band” in the world, but not the “Best Band” in the world.  Can’t win them all.  The band comes out and basically destroys the crowd with “Burn” as Ritchie Blackmore’s guitar playing is on point and full of his destructive power showing why he was so freaking awesome.  David Coverdale is in top form with this one vocally and Glenn Hughes verses are equally awesome sounding.  The band really comes out on fire with the help of Jon Lord’s keyboard fills and wow, that solo is killer too.   And lastly, Ian Paice’s drumming drives this song home.  Easily for me, the best song on the album.

“Might Just Take Your Life” is up next and the song is so much faster and harder than the original album version which is why I love live albums as they can take a song and change it up and sometimes even improve it.  David and Glenn share vocal duties, but the king on here is Jon Lord and to think of it, he is always the king as his talent on thoe organ and keyboards is unmatched by most.  Two songs, two perfect hits.

Glenn Hughes speaks to the crowd and they go in to “Lay Down, Stay Down” and Glenn almost forgot the title of the song in the intro.  It opens slowly with Jon Lord’s keyboard playing and then he turns it up before the band explodes ready to slay again.  Glenn and David again share duties and both add their own flare to the song especially with Glenn going so high and screaming his head off.  And Glenn’s bass is pounding throughout as it sounds like he is slamming it pretty good.  There is not getting past how great this band really is. They all contribute so much to it and Ritchie’s playing is smoking hot here.

Side One ends with an 11 minute version of “Mistreated” and Ritchie opens it with a hellacious guitar solo.  Yeah, it is worth the price of admission although short before going in to the blues riff of the song. David’s vocals were meant for these blues songs.  He goes all deep and gritty and nails it.  If you get the reissue, the song goes for 15 minutes and you get Jon Lord conversing with the crowd and introducing the band and even calling himself Rick Emerson (Rick Wakeman and Keith Emerson blending of names).

Side Two:

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Side Two opens with “Smoke on the Water” which is not a Mark III tune and that is where it suffers.  Musically, the song is absolutely stunning as Ritchie and the boys play the hell out of the song, but the problem with this one is the vocals. I don’t think David does a very good job as he sounds pretty rough and the mix kinda stinks.  Glenn shares vocal duties and does no better.  If you could pull out the vocals, this would be an amazing jam session.  So ignore the vocals and you might enjoy this one.

Lastly, they end the show (or the album) with “You Fool No One” and it goes on for over 18 minutes.  Jon Lord opens it with a solo and some atmospheric sounds and then races his fingers over the keys at break-neck speed and totally freaks you out with the sounds.  Ritchie comes firing in and Ian’s drumming pace picks up.  Glenn’s bass is driving the rhythm as well.  A complete jam session before David & Glenn come in with vocals and then another stellar solo by Blackmore.  The song even bleeds a little with the song “The Mule” from the album ‘Fireball’ which isn’t even credited on the release, but what a nice surprise and a nice change of pace.  It goes back to the song and pulls out an Ian Paice drum solo before finally finishing out and you almost forget what the song was that started the whole thing off.

If you have the re-issue, as I mentioned, you get “Space Truckin'” for a 30 minute version of the song, but I am sticking to the original release’s songs so I am not going in to a 30 minute version of a song which seems like total overkill, not that an 18 minute version of “You Fool No One” isn’t.

Okay, that is it.  I have to say, with the exception of the vocals on “Smoke on the Water”, I thoroughly enjoyed this album.  I thought the production quality was great and the jam sessions were amazing.  This one is up there for me on the David Coverdale Deep Purple live albums.  I think I will give it a 4.0 out of 5.0 Stars.  I could listen to Jon Lord and Ritchie Blackmore play all day long trading solos back and forth.  Each time I listened to it, I found something else I liked.  This might not be the first live album you think of with the band, but if you see it out, grab it!!!

Up next…Whitesnake – ‘Saints & Sinners’.

The David Coverdale Series:

  1. Deep Purple – Burn
  2. Deep Purple – Stormbringer
  3. Deep Purple – Come Taste the Band
  4. Deep Purple – Made in Europe
  5. David Coverdale – Whitesnake
  6. Deep Purple – Last Concert in Japan
  7. David Coverdale – Northwinds
  8. David Coverdale’s Whitesnake – Snakebite
  9. Whitesnake – Trouble
  10. Whitesnake – Lovehunter
  11. Whitesnake – Ready an’ Willing
  12. Whitesnake – Live…in the Heart of the City
  13. Whitesnake – Come An’ Get it
  14. Deep Purple – Live in London
  15. Whitesnake – Saints & Sinners
  16. Whitesnake – Slide It In
  17. Whitesnake – “Give Me More Time” 12″ Single (Bonus Review)
  18. Whitesnake – ‘The Best of Whitesnake (Bonus Review – 1982 release)
  19. Whitesnake – Whitesnake (1987)
  20. Whitesnake – Slip of the Tongue
  21. David Coverdale – “The Last Note of Freedom” – Single Review
  22. Coverdale/Page – Coverdale/Page
  23. Coverdale/Page – “Take Me For A Little While 12” Single (Bonus Review)

Other David Coverdale Albums reviewed – (Box Sets and Bootlegs):

    1. Whitesnake – 1987 (30th Anniversary Edition) – Box Set
    2. Whitesnake – Slide It In (35th Anniversary Edition) – Box Set
    3. Whitesnake – Unzipped – Box Set
    4. Whitesnake – Slip of the Tongue (30th Anniversary Edition) – Box Set
    5. Whitesnake (Snake) – Still of the Night Live in Battle Creek, Mich. July 26, 1987 (Bootleg)

38 thoughts on “Deep Purple – ‘Live in London’ – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)

  1. Because of that “loudest band in the world” but not the “best band in the world”, I know this is reissued on something else. Probably Live in London 1974, the 2 CD set. I have the single CD too, on Japanese import, because it’s an original mix.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Cool one John!
    Never seen this one ever. I like the fact that Lord and Blackmore are the two dudes that are bringing it on this release. When you think about it what a move DP did back in 73 by canning Gillian and Glover and bringing Hughes and Cov onboard.
    Pretty wild dynamic as has a band ever canned two guys at the same time on the scale of success that Purple was on at the time?
    Crazy when you think about it.
    The new issue of Rock Candy has Hughes on the cover with at least a 10-page interview. It’s a great read Hughes covers and talks about everyone.
    Check it out

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I saw that Rock Candy cover. Haven’t bought it yet.
      Yes, DP made a bold move to some pretty good success…at least in my book as I am coving it so intensely. Not too many bands have a had success canning a singer let alone two band members at once.

      Liked by 1 person

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