w/ The Temperance Movement
Mountain View, CA
September 29, 2018
Photos and review by Jared Stossel
2018 has slowly but surely become the year of the “last tour ever” tours. While artists aren’t necessarily hanging up the prospect of writing and releasing music, they’re ending their run of touring. The years have shown the toll that touring takes on people, both physically and mentally; it’s not for the faint of heart. So it only makes sense that some of the biggest names in music, particularly in rock, and bringing their time on the road to an end. While it hasn’t been completely confirmed yet, Deep Purple, one of the biggest names in rock and metal, gave an interview in 2016 stating that their current tour, dubbed “The Long Goodbye Tour” may indeed be their last big run of touring. The tour has been going since 2017, in support of the bands’ 20th (yes, 20th) album, Infinite. This summer, the band hit the road on a co-headlining tour with Judas Priest, and made a Bay Area stop at the packed Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, CA. Whether or not this would indeed be the last Deep Purple show that Bay Area rockers would get to see, there was indeed a great deal of excitement in the air.
The show was opened by The Temperance Movement, a band that fit perfectly on the bill. Powering through a half-hour set of blues-rock inspired tracks with an alternative rock flair, the Scottish rock act gave it everything they had and seemed to win over the audience in attendance. It was a great warm-up for a band like Judas Priest; they weren’t a heavy metal act, so the audience wasn’t getting more of the same, and it got people in the mood for a heavier kind of rock.
A massive curtain adorned the stage as the lights went down for Judas Priest’s highly awaited return to the Bay Area. The second the curtain dropped, the band were playing at full blast (I do regret not having earplugs with me in the photo pit for their act; my ears were definitely ringing for a day or two after this one). Surprisingly, the band opened with “Firepower”, the track from their eponymous 18th studio album which dropped earlier this year. Every track that Priest performed whether new or old, was a complete hit with the crowd. Vocalist Rob Halford didn’t even have to ride out on a motorcycle to keep the show so exciting. (But he did. And it was awesome). Judas Priest’s hour and fifteen minute set proved why they are still one of the defining names in heavy metal and rock music, and it’s clear that they’ll still be reigning for a long time.
Only about a half hour had passed, and Deep Purple took the stage for what I would dub as an immaculate set. Their musicianship transcends even that of the most trained classical musicians, and it showed as they brought forth an impressive hour and fifteen minute set. “Highway Star” brought things up to full speed immediately before heading straight into “Pictures of Home” and “Bloodsucker”. Vocalist Ian Gillan spoke maybe only twice throughout the duration of their set, keeping the show focused solely on the power of the music.
While Gillan is at the front, one of the biggest stars of Deep Purple is Don Airey, the band’s keyboardist who joined in 2002. His performance is what every rock keyboardist should aspire to; from melodic keyboard lines, to minutes-long solos between multiple instruments, and even an impromptu performance of the Star Wars theme song on a synthesizer that mimicked a brass section, Airey’s performance was the pièce de résistance of Deep Purple’s set.
The band closed with the iconic “Smoke on the Water” before returning to the stage for a two song encore comprised solely of covers: “Time Is Tight” by Booker T & The MG’s and “Hush” by Joe South. It’s evident why bands like Deep Purple and Judas Priest are still so in demand; it’s not because of any kind of nostalgia act or people trying to relive their youth; it’s because they’re damn good musicians that are still able to put on an unforgettable show. Sure, they may be a bit older than they were when the songs came out, but they can still give everyone in attendance one hell of a show, and make it sound damn good. Honestly, that’s all that matters.
Deep Purple Set List
Pictures of Home
Strange Kind of Woman
Sometimes I Feel Like Screaming
Knocking at Your Back Door
Smoke on the Water
Time Is Tight (Booker T. & The MG’s cover)
Hush (Joe South cover)
Judas Priest Set List
Delivering the Goods
Rising From Ruins
You've Got Another Thing Comin'
Hell Bent for Leather
Breaking the Law
Living After Midnight