Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam June 2nd, 2017
Deep Purple just started a few weeks ago 'The Long Goodbye Tour'. Last Friday they played the Amsterdam Ziggo Dome. On forehand fans were surprised they were placed in this big Arena. There were discussions that it was expected to get rescheduled in the nearby smaller AFAS Live Hall (that's the one that used to be called the Heineken Music Hall). That didn't happen though. It was not a big surprise that the venue did not sell out. Many empty seats on the 1st and 2nd floor. Still there were enough fans to fill the place nicely.
Monster Truck opened the show. A nice bluesy rock outfit from Canada that did well as support act. After that Deep Purple took the stage to play their set. They played four songs of their new album "Infinity" plus two ('Hell to Pay' and 'Uncommon Man') from their 2013 album "Now What?". The songs unfortunately can't compete with all the old classic tunes. Many fans have been requesting the band to play more new material through the years but it just made them sound extinguished and lame. Not that they played bad but it was all too much smile and no fire. Even the old classics could not save the night anymore this time.
Still the band seems to enjoy themselves on stage, big smiles all over the place. And it looked like most of the fans loved it as well. Still I suppose they need a moody bastard to fire things up. But that is all in the past. It is almost 25 years ago Ritchie Blackmore has left the band. Still about ten years ago they were convincing a lot more when I saw them in this very same line-up. Nowadays all members of the band are ofcourse far in their 60's, some are even past the age of 70. You can't expect these old men jumping all over the stage the whole night.
I suppose it won't get any better than what they showed us tonight. Ian Gillan's voice was fine considering the shows he has done over the past years. He needed sheets with lyrics to help him through the night, but I believe even that is nothing new. Paicey was hitting his kit fine like he has been doing always. Morse is a fine guitarplayer but no showman, he had a smile on his face from start to finish. Don Airey grabbed the attention of the Dutch fans by first playing a snippet of Dutch prog rockers Focus, later on followed by the funny local tune 'Tulips from Amsterdam' in his keyboard solo. He did a fine job on the keys although he will never get the fame Jon Lord had in the past. The other member who was part of Rainbow in the past, Roger Glover, did his bass solo in the encore as introduction to the final song of the night 'Black Night'. It was a nice end that also included 'Perfect Strangers', 'Space Truckin''. 'Smoke on the Water' and 'Hush' in the last part of the show.
So all in all nice show, a bit tame but the old farts seems to enjoy themselves and it looked like they delivered what the fans came for. Now it's up to that other old fart, Ritchie Blackmore, to show what he is up to when he starts his dates with Rainbow in England in two weeks time. Can he convince the fans better than his old bandmates?