So this is Purple's Long Goodbye Tour, and well we better say a very long goodbye because they still seemed to be firing on all cylinders. But more on that later. First up were cool cats, well Cats in Space to be precise. And boy did they not disappoint. They are just a great band. Shame that they played to an extremely sparse crowd. The DP crowd didn't give them the time of day which is sad. they missed a great 30 minute set of Cats tunes. Of course I think a club show suits these guys much better but they were fully at home of the O2 stage and sounded truly good. I'll be seeing them again in 2018 no doubt in much cosier surroundings no doubt.
I broke my duck with Europe which is one of the reasons I gave this gig a shot. I need to hear The Final Countdown live at least once haha! To be honest I am not a fan of this more bluesy incarnation of the band but I gave them a good shot live. Joey's voice doesn't go as high as the old days which is understandable but he was in fine form as was the band. They were the perfect foil to Purple in fact. Coming across as very Purple-y at various points. They were also pretty heavy at times. John Norum is a great guitarist no doubt. I loved the song Last look At Eden. That was a great tune. Scream of Anger was a full paced heavy metal tune that was for the diehards out there. Ended with of course those parping keys for The Final Countdown. Finally seen it live. Europe were cool but not amazing.
Finally it was time for the grand daddy's of classic rock to show us what they could do. To be honest last time I saw Purple here 2 years ago I thought they were good but not amazing. On this night I really DID think they were amazing! They were on shit hot form. Ian's voice was great, although I do find some of his shrieking a bit OTT, Granddad screaming to the kids "shut up!" but when he does more of his normal singing he sounds pretty great.
The band all sound great especially Steve Morse. Guy, is a six string maestro of coolness. The set list was a bit mixed. No Highway Star was a bit strange also no Child In Time which left a few old timers groaning. However they played to perfecting for a full 90 minute set. I love the new track The Surprising. That was a huge highlight for me. The rest was pretty standard classic Purple performed flawlessly with pristine sound.
Judging by this show the band is still at the top of its game so I don't know why they are slowly quitting to be honest. Let's hope they are just toying with quitting. They never embarrass themselves for a nano second on stage. They all still have it and them some although Ian looks more and more like a shuffling Granddad standing up at the karaoke after a few too many sherries! Keep standing and rocking old man, you still got it!