Deep Purple - In Concert With The London Symphony Orchestra (DVD)
Eagle Rock Entertainment
Hard Rock with Symphony Orchestra
13 songs (122'00)
Release year: 2007
Deep Purple, Eagle Rock Entertainment
Reviewed by Marty
Former Deep Purple keyboardist Jon Lord has always had a passion for classical music and in 1969, performed his score for the Concerto For Group And Orchestra along with the rest of Deep Purple and the London Symphony Orchestra. It was a groundbreaking event that had never been attempted before and purists were sceptical about a rock group "meddling" with a symphony orchestra. Fast forward 30 years later and Jon Lord had been living with the fact that over the years, the original score for his piece of work had been lost. He was approached by a young Dutch composer by the name of Marco de Goieij before a Deep Purple show in Rotterdam who informed him that since the original score had been lost, he had been trying to recreate it by listening to it over and over again as well as watching the video of the performance. In an astonishing act of dedication, all that was left was for Jon Lord to fill in the gaps that he had not been able to decipher. Conductor Paul Mann had also expressed interest in conducting the concerto one day and when told of the pending re-creation of the score, he was in. The dates were then set. This performance was to be given with two very special shows at the Royal Albert Hall in London England on September 25th and 26th, 1999. This particular DVD is a re-issue of the original performance and is part of the Eagle Vision Classics series of DVD releases by Eagle Rock Entertainment.

With a series of vocalists including Miller Anderson, Samantha Brown, and even Ronnie James Dio, the show begins with a couple of other Jon Lord compositions Pictured Within and Wait A While that feature very moving melody lines and beautiful melodic vocals. A couple of tracks from Roger Glover's Butterfly Ball suite are also included with a very "cabaret" vocal by Ronnie James Dio. I swear that this guy could sing anything and it would sound great. Sitting In A Dream and Love Is All come off as very spirited tracks and Ronnie absolutely steals the show with his performance. Members of Deep Purple guitarist Steve Morse's band join in with Deep Purple drummer Ian Paice for an alternative instrumental arrangement of the Deep Purple track Wring That Neck. The next three long pieces of music are the actual concerto that was performed with the London Symphony in 1969 and it has been recreated beautifully with all of Deep Purple, including vocalist Ian Gillan contributing. The show finishes with 5 Deep Purple tracks accompanied by the London Symphony Orchestra including Ted The Mechanic and Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming from the Purpendicular album as well as Watching The Sky from the Abandon album and the show finishes with rousing versions of Pictures Of Home and Smoke On The Water, featuring all of the members of Steve Morse's band as well as a reappearance by Ronnie James Dio who duets with Ian Gillan on Smoke On The Water.

I've never heard the original version of the Concerto For Group And Orchestra but after watching this several times, I have a new appreciation for the talent and compositional abilities of Jon Lord. He left Deep Purple a few years back to further pursue his passion for classical music, no doubt fuelled by the experience of performing his once lost lengthy composition again. Deep Purple has always had classical themes and melodies in their music and it really comes off well with a symphony orchestra. I can't say enough about the performance of Ronnie James Dio. By watching the two tracks he performs, especially since the musical style is a little out of character for him, it's easy to see why he is one of the best rock vocalists in the business. Ian Gillan seems a little upstaged by his presence as well.

This is a very interesting and very enjoyable DVD. Deep Purple fans who have an open mind and who also enjoy classical music, will enjoy this as well. This was an event and a very important one to Jon Lord and it shows by his reactions and expressions during the show. By his interactions, head nods and other signals that he gives to conductor Paul Mann, he is really the one who is conducting this whole performance.

Killing Songs :
Sitting In A Dream, Concerto For Group And Orchestra - Movements 1-3, Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming and Pictures Of Home
Marty quoted no quote
Other albums by Deep Purple that we have reviewed:
Deep Purple - Whoosh! reviewed by Goat and quoted 85 / 100
Deep Purple - Who Do We Think We Are reviewed by Thomas and quoted 81 / 100
Deep Purple - Fireball reviewed by Thomas and quoted CLASSIC
Deep Purple - Deep Purple in Rock reviewed by Thomas and quoted CLASSIC
Deep Purple - History, Hits & Highlights '68 - '76 (DVD) reviewed by Marty and quoted no quote
To see all 11 reviews click here
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