Eagle Rock, E.A.R. Music To Release New Archived Deep Purple Concert

Courtesy:  Eagle Rock Entertainment/E.A.R. Music

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/E.A.R. Music

Eagle Rock Entertainment and E.A.R. Music will release another archived live Deep Purple this summer.

Eagle Rock Entertainment and E.A.R. Music will release Deep Purple: Graz 1975 on Tuesday, September 23rd. The recording, which is part of Deep Purple’s “(Overseas) Live Series,” was recorded at the Liebenauer ice rink. The rink is located just outside of the city of Graz, Austria. Graz is the second-largest city in Austria just behind Vienna. The concert features the classic MK III lineup of Richie Blackmore (guitar), David Coverdale (vocals), Glenn Hughes (bass/vocals), Jon Lord (keyboards), and Ian Paice (drums). He show was dubbed by the local press as being the “rock event of the year” at the time of the event.

The band’s eight-song performance opens with a rousing performance of its hit song ‘Burn.’ The show’s set list consists largely of songs from the band’s earlier days in which Ian Gillan handled vocal duties and Roger Glover played bass. It includes iconic songs such as ‘Smoke on the Water’ and ‘Space Truckin.’ After the band’s performance in Graz, it would go on to perform only two more shows together before guitarist Richie Blackmore would leave the band. He would later go on to form the equally iconic rock band Rainbow. American guitarist Tommy Bolin took over guitar duties after Blackmore’s departure from the band.

Deep Purple: Graz 1975 has never before been released in its entirety in any form. Its release later this month will mark the first time ever that the recording has been released in its entirety. It will be available on CD, two-disc gatefold LP, and digital audio. The show’s set list is noted below.

Track Listing:

  1. Burn
  2. Stormbringer
  3. The Gypsy
  4. Lady Double Dealer
  5. Mistreated
  6. Smoke On The Water
  7. You Fool No One
  8. Space Truckin’

 

More information on this and other releases from Eagle Rock Entertainment is available online at http://www.facebook.com/EagleRockEnt and http://twitter.com/EagleRockNews. More information on this and other releases from E.A.R. Music is available online at http://ear-music.net and http://www.facebook.com/earmusicofficial. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Deep Purple’s Latest Live LP An Important Addition To Any Fan’s Library

Courtesy:  Eagle Rock Entertainment

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment

Eight years ago, Eagle Rock Entertainment released to DVD what has gone on to become one of a handful of iconic performances from legendary British hard rock band Deep Purple. The concert in question was the band’s performance at the 1974 California Jam. Last month, Eagle Rock finally followed up that recording with the DVD’s audio only companion on CD. The DVD half of this recording is probably out of print at the time of this review. So it’s nice to see the classic archived concert’s return. The band only performs seven songs in its set here. But that’s no loss considering how rich each song proves to be. The performance by the band is just as impressive as the set list chosen for the show. And while the audio mix starts out rather muddy, it does get better. This factor is just as important as anything else to note as the alleged history behind the audio mix has its own story. The history behind the audio mix and the audio mix set alongside the band’s performance and its set list serve to make this archived live recording worth at least one listen.

Deep Purple’s set at its 1974 California Jam consisted of only seven songs. That might not seem like much. But the songs included in the set and the set’s near ninety-minute run time make the set list rather impressive to say the least. Over the course of the band’s nearly ninety-minute set, the members of Deep Purple put on what was one of the best performances of the entire California Jam Festival that year. David Coverdale was handling vocal duties for the band at the time of the concert. And he put on a virtual clinic throughout the show, hitting notes that no man should seemingly be able to hit. His ability to those high notes and mid-range notes even puts to shame the likes of Led Zeppelin front man Robert Plant and even Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden), James LaBrie (Dream Theater) and so many other pure singers past and present. Richie Blackmore (guitars) and Ian Paice (drums) both get their moment to shine throughout the show, too. Whether in their solo moments or as part of the whole, Paice and Blackmore prove throughout the show just why they are still among the most respected musicians in their respective fields even today even four decades after that iconic performance was recorded.

Deep Purple spent nearly ninety-minutes wowing audiences in attendance with the band’s fan friendly set list. The band’s members, as already noted, more than exhibit their talents time and again throughout the course of the concert. By direct connection, the band’s overall performance impresses, too. The band keeps the energy up throughout the course of the show, keeping the audience at a fever pitch from start to finish. Even on the slightly more reserved, bluesy ‘Mistreated’ The band somehow maintains a certain level of power. It actually rivals any blues-rock based song performed by fellow Brit-rockers The Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin. Audiences will hear and feel that energy for themselves when they check out this live recording, too.

Both the performance by the members of Deep Purple at this concert and the band’s set list hold equal importance to the overall enjoyment of this latest live DP release from Eagle Rock Entertainment. There is still one more factor to consider in the recording’s overall enjoyment to investigate. That final factor is the concert’s audio mix. There is no getting around the fact that the concert’s audio mix starts out rather muddy. Guitarist Richie Blackmore overpowers David Coverdale’s vocals rather blatantly throughout ‘Burn’ and even ‘Might Just Take Your Life.’ But it does get better as the near ninety-minute concert progresses. In defense of Eagle Rock Entertainment, there is a story that alleges Blackmore went to the individual running the audio board for the band’s performance and essentially told him to put more emphasis on his [Blackmore’s] part than on anyone else. There’s no telling if there is any truth to this story. But if there is, it would most definitely explain why the audio mix sounds so messy early on. Luckily, that muddiness doesn’t last too long. It gets better as the concert progresses. Audiences can hear the different parts level out more as the show progresses. And because the audio mix does clear up and balance out, it makes the show much easier on the ears (as if the set list and performance together aren’t already easy on the ears to begin with).   That ease on listeners’ ears alongside the set list and performance by the band all come together to make this recording one worth at least one watch by both classic rock fans and fans of Deep Purple.

Deep Purple: Live in California ’74 is available now in stores and online. It can be ordered direct via Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Cal-Jam-1974-Deep-Purple/dp/B00IAR2DG4/ref=sr_1_2?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1400702990&sr=1-2&keywords=deep+purple+California+Jam. More information on this and other releases from Eagle Rock Entertainment is available online at http://www.facebook.com/EagleRockEnt and http://www.eagle-rock.com. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

“Concerto” Documentary A Fitting Tribute To Lord’s Memory

Courtesy:   Eagle  Rock Entertainment/Thompson Music/E.A.R. Music

Courtesy: Eagle Rock Entertainment/Thompson Music/E.A.R. Music

When Metallica recorded its now fan favorite live album S&M with the San Francisco Symphony, that recording was lauded by fans and critics alike. The praise showered on the band was fully justified. It was considered by some to be a groundbreaking performance because it was the coming together of two entirely separate musical worlds. What many people might not know is that S&M was not in fact the first time that the two worlds have come together. Former Deep Purple member Jon Lord crafted and performed his now famous Concerto for Group and Orchestra almost forty-five years ago in 1969. That performance was truly groundbreaking. Sadly, cancer claimed Lord in July of 2012. Thanks to Eagle Rock Entertainment though, Lord’s opus finally saw the light of day that same year. And now again thanks to Eagle Rock, audiences are taken even deeper into Lord’s majestic and magical composition thanks to a new documentary on that record. There is a lot to like about this recently released documentary. The documentary’s behind-the-scenes main feature is the main portion of what audiences will appreciate in this release.  Audiences are provided a history of Lord’s original performance of his opus in order to set up the more recent recording session.  As part of the recording process, viewers will also get to hear from some big names that helped bring the recording to life. Audiences will also appreciate that not only are they taken behind the scenes of the recording’s birth, but they are also provided with two opportunities to hear the recording in the new Blu-ray presentation.  It is included both as a bonus feature on the Blu-ray itself, and as its own separate CD as even more of a bonus.  All of this taken into consideration makes the documentary on Jon Lord’s Concert for Group & Orchestra quite the interesting work.

Far too many record labels in today’s music industry add “making of documentaries” to their new albums and try to pawn them off on fans as something special.  The problem is that so few of those “documentaries” in question are really worth the extra money shelled out by hard working audiences.  Jon Lord: Concerto for Group& is not one of those releases.  This documentary gives audiences a full history of the former Deep Purple member’s iconic song, from its very first ever performance in 1969 at the famed Royal Albert Hall to its first non-live recording in 2012.  Audiences see just how much work went into putting his composition to record.  It’s a fitting tribute to the musician, who sadly lost his battle with cancer just last year.  From the initial setup to the recording of each part and everything in-between, viewers will see that this isn’t just another one of those albums where each part was recorded separately in different studios.  This understanding will generate a whole new appreciation for the song and everything that went into actually doing a “studio” recording of it.  This applies to listeners that are both more familiar with Lord’s work and those that might be less so.

Along the course of the documentary, viewers get to hear from some of the biggest names in the rock world that took part in the recording process.  Those names include greats such as Bruce Dickinson of Iron Maiden and blues/rock guitar great Joe Bonamassa among so many others.  The respect shared between them and Lord is obvious through their shared commentary and by the seriousness with which they approached their respective roles in the overall composition.

The overall presentation of the documentary here is exceptional to say the least.  From the composition’s history to its first official studio recording, so much information is shared on its importance.  As impressive as the main feature is, Eagle Rock didn’t stop there.  Eagle Rock has included as a bonus for fans, the complete Concerto for Group & Orchestra both on its own CD and as a bonus feature on the primary Blu-ray disc.  And it’s not all that is included as a bonus, either.  Eagle Rock has exceeded expectations once again with this documentary’s bonus material.  Also included as bonus material is are interviews with Paul Mann and Marco de Groeji.  Mann conducted the orchestra assembled for the new recording of Concerto for Group & Orchestra.  The insight that he shares is something special.  That’s because of his understanding of and appreciation for the worlds of both rock and classical, as well as for Lord himself.  His interview and that with others involved with the record’s production more than live up to the title of bonus features. Together with the documentary’s main feature, they collectively make this release one that transcends genres.  It’s one that fans of both classical and rock will enjoy. It is available now in stores and online.   More information on this and other releases from Eagle Rock Entertainment is available online at http://www.eaglerockent.com and http://www.facebook.com/EagleRockEnt.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Lord’s “Concerto” Is A Modern Musical Work Of Art

Courtesy: Thompson Music/Eagle Rock Entertainment/Eagle Records

Jon Lord’s Concerto for Group and Orchestra is a modern musical work of art.  One part classical and one part rock concert, this opus proves more than ever that music truly is the universal language.  It’s a modern classical work that could so easily put modern masters the likes of Hans Zimmer and John Williams to shame.  The way that the musicians so perfectly complement each other throughout each movement makes it sound just as much a movie soundtrack as a general modern classical opus.

The style and dynamic contrasts of this three movement piece will pull in audiences from both sides of the fence.  And the addition of a top notch group of musicians on both ends to bring it all to life makes it that much more of a joy to hear.  Steve Morse, Joe Bonamassa, and Darin Vasilev all join in on guitars, with Vasilev heading things in the first movement.  Bonamassa comes in on movement two, while Morse finishes things off in movement three.  Brett Morgan and Guy Pratt add their own touch to the work’s rock based sections.  On the other side, the control of the orchestra (especially the strings) throughout what would seem to be the “B” section of the first movement.  That section repeats later near the end of the movement, too.  Classical fans will also recognize what is a reference to Gusatv Holst’s The Planets.  As noted in the liner notes, there is a reference in the first movement to “Jupiter.”  But it’s a bit of a surprise that there’s no mention that the final moments are equally similar to the final moments of “Mars.”

The immediate contrast of the brashness from the first movement into the second movement adds so much more emotion to the overall piece.  It’s a total mood change.  The way that it the second movement changes moods so much from one section to the next makes for even more discussion and enjoyment.

The intensity from the concerto’s first movement returns in its third movement full force, with the orchestra’s percussion and low brass holding court first.  The woodwinds come in next, followed by the strings, and then even Hammond organ.  It all comes together for what is without a doubt the entire concerto’s finest moment.  While the entire movement is nearly eleven minutes long, it’s nearly eleven minutes well spent as even rockers who have never been fully introduced into the world of classical music will find themselves listening intently to the musicianship of this group, along with the rock elements.  When it’s all said and done, it will leave audiences soundly appeased yet wanting more.  That is the sign of a good recording.

Concerto for Group and Orchestra offers so much for both fans of classical and rock.  One can only hope that it will serve its purpose and bring both sides together, perhaps making for new fans of the other side all the way around.  This is a standout album, all the way around.  It is available now in stores and online.  It can be ordered direct via Eagle Rock Entertainment’s website, http://www.eagle-rock.com.

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