Deep Purple

Formed 1968.
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Deep Purple: Smoke On The Water

Ritchie Blackmore describes how the police were banging at the door as he wrote this riff

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Deep Purple are an English rock band formed in Hertford in 1968. They are considered to be among the pioneers of heavy metal and modern hard rock, although their musical approach changed over the years. Originally formed as a progressive rock band, the band's sound shifted to hard rock in 1970. Deep Purple, together with Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, have been referred to as the "unholy trinity of British hard rock and heavy metal in the early to mid-Seventies". They were listed in the 1975 Guinness Book of World Records as "the globe's loudest band" for a 1972 concert at London's Rainbow Theatre, and have sold over 100 million albums worldwide, including 8.5 million certified units in the US.

Deep Purple have seen several line-up changes and an eight-year hiatus (1976–1984). The 1968–1976 line-ups are commonly labelled Mark I, II, III and IV. Their second and most commercially successful line-up featured Ian Gillan (vocals), Jon Lord (organ), Roger Glover (bass), Ian Paice (drums), and Ritchie Blackmore (guitar). This line-up was active from 1969 to 1973, and was revived from 1984 to 1989, and again from 1992 to 1993. The band achieved more modest success in the intervening periods between 1968 and 1969 with the line-up including Rod Evans (vocals) and Nick Simper (bass, backing vocals), between 1974 and 1976 (Tommy Bolin replacing Blackmore in 1975) with the line-up including David Coverdale (vocals) and Glenn Hughes (bass, vocals), and between 1989 and 1992 with the line-up including Joe Lynn Turner (vocals). The band's line-up (currently featuring Ian Gillan, and guitarist Steve Morse from 1994) has been much more stable in recent years, although organist Jon Lord's retirement from the band in 2002 (being succeeded by Don Airey) left Ian Paice as the only original Deep Purple member still in the band.

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BBC Reviews

  1. Review of Come Taste the Band: 35th Anniversary Edition

    Come Taste the Band: 35th Anniversary Edition 2010

    Reviewed by Greg Moffitt
    A harmless little sparkler where once there was a ton of TNT.
  2. Review of Live In London

    Live In London 2007

    Reviewed by Ian Wade
    As an archive release and a revealing fragment of the madness of the Purps, Live In...
  3. Review of Rapture Of The Deep

    Rapture Of The Deep 2005

    Reviewed by Rahul Shrivastava
    Heavy riffs, chugging basslines, and waves of deliciously smoking Hammond organ signal...
  4. Review of Machine Head

    Machine Head 1972

    Reviewed by Sid Smith
    ...remains their finest hour.
  5. Review of In Rock

    In Rock 1970

    Reviewed by Sid Smith
    ...pretty much carved out the template for heavy rock.
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