DEEP PURPLE – Limitless (2017 exclusive CD included with Classic Rock #234, April 2017)
You have to hand it to the folks at Classic Rock. It’s a quality publication that also manages to give out quality free cover-mount CDs. With all the attention on Deep Purple these days due to their newly released album Infinite, Classic Rock have done the band up in style. The CD is not just for beginners either. Limitless (get it?) has a bunch of material from recent vintage and one exclusive track too. That’s right — one track on this CD is exclusive to Classic Rock, so get on it, collectors!
At 43 minutes, Limitless has the ideal run time for a great listen through. If you want to check out some new Deep Purple right off the bat, then just dive in. Tracks 1 and 2 are the first two singles from Infinite: “Time For Bedlam” and “All I Got is You”. Both tracks are excellent, and fine samplings of what the current Deep Purple lineup (est. 2003) sound like. With Steve Morse and Don Airey, the band have gone from strength to strength. The instrumental prowess on these songs will easily demonstrate why Deep Purple are universally lauded.
Going back one album prior, we have two tracks from the Now What?! period. The single version of “All the Time in the World” is a nice ballad for inclusion, though I think “Vincent Price” blows everything else on that album away. Also included is the rock and roll “First Sign of Madness”. The liner notes state this song is taken from the “Above and Beyond” CD single. That doesn’t actually appear to be the case, but ” First Sign of Madness” was included as a bonus track on many editions of the Now What?! album.
The second half of Limitless is dedicated to live material, all classics. “No One Came” from 1971’s Fireball is one of Purple’s most lethal grooves, and is lifted from the deluxe “Gold” reissue of the Now What?! album. Gillan’s voice strains hard on this one. A fun version of “Strange Kind of Woman” comes from the double live 2015 Wacken set. It’s pure delight. Next, “Perfect Strangers” is always welcome aboard, and this live version comes from the parallel double live 2015 Tokyo release.
Finally the set draws to a close with the Classic Rock exclusive track, a live tape of “Black Night” from Milan, July 21 2013. Many of the live tracks on the Now What?! reissue come from that gig, but “Black Night” is previously unreleased. It’s a jamming version, over seven minutes and Morse-heavy. And there are more live tracks from that gig in the Deep Purple Infinite box set version, which looks just fantastic.
And magazine isn’t bad either! The Deep Purple interview reveals some of the lighter side of the legendary Gillan/Blackmore relationship, tempered by the passage of time. Incidentally, the magazine gives Infinite 7/10 stars. That’s not bad for a band about to hit their 50th anniversary in a year’s time. Check it out, and enjoy the 8-track CD Limitless while you read along!