Monday, April 10, 2017

Deep Purple - inFinite

Another year, another record by the Canadian madman Devin Townsend and his DTP. Man, you just gonna love that man's endless work ethic to give the listener high quality metal in a very... what's that... you tell me this isn't a new DTP album? But... the logo is on the cover... who could it else be? Deep Purple! WTF!

Okay, let just look past the obvious copyright infringement, and instead look at what is most likely the last full length effort we will ever get from the rock legends. In almost 50 years, Deep Purple has spoiled us with some fantastic rock and released some truly unforgettable albums like "In Rock" and "Machine Head". And while I am more into the heavier stuff, I still have a lot of respect for the band, and do listen to them from time to time. I can always turn on a "Space Truckin'", "Burn", or "Highway Star", it never fails to give me a smile.

So expecting their 20th full length effort to be among that level of quality is more or less out of the question, I am just glad that we are being treated to a nice record that is worth the four year wait since the last one (2013's "Now What?!"). I would not say that "inFinite" sounds fresh or anything like that, but there is something that the band does to make this old school rock album feel at home here in 2017. Could be the production, or it could be that this music is simply timeless, it is all in the eyes of the beholder.

While my knowledge of the Deep Purple discography is far from brilliant, I can definitely sense that "inFinite" ties it all together neatly in a goody bag, mixing a lot of the styles that we have heard from the band in previous years. As usual though, there are two key components to the music, singer Ian Gillan and keyboardist Don Airey. There are few bands that incorporate the keyboards as well as this band, and it really shows here, they are loud and proud, driving the songs more than the guitars. Then we have Gillan, whom utilize his vocals with great precision, giving the songs a lot of soul and warmth. Of course, Paice, Glover and Morse got their little moments too, but they are sparse and not all too significant to this record.

It is a little shame though that the song quality is rather uneven, keeping the album from being in any type of stable condition. I would not say that any song is bad in any sense, but a lot of them are unnecessary. "Get Me Outta Here" are some weird big band version of Queensrÿche that just does not sit well (especially since Gillan sounds a little bit like Geoff Tate), and "Johnny's Band" is definitely some cheesy country disguised as a rock song. The most worthless song here must still be the last one, a cover of The Doors song "Roadhouse Blues", which is not only really boring, but it makes no sense to why Deep Purple would put it in the album. It just takes space, that's it.

But there is still some quality to be had on "inFinite", from the funky "Hip Boots", the groovy "All I Got Is You", and the proggy "Birds of Prey", this album has some neat variety to offer. So even if this ends up being the Brits last album or not, it is still a nice record at the end stage of the band's career. It is not trying to be an alpha dog in the discography, it just wants to do a good job and get a treat from time to time. It got its moments, displaying that Deep Purple still got some strength left. Anyway, thanks to nearly 5 decades of rock service, and good luck on your final big tour.

Songs worthy of recognition: All I Got Is You, The Surprising, Birds of Prey

Rating: 7/10 Nights in Vegas

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