What is Deep Purple's best album

50 years of "Deep Purple in Rock"A milestone in rock history

For some it was an infernal roar, for others an artistic revelation.

With a wild, ingeniously staged cacophony, "Deep Purple" wanted to make it clear with the first track of their new long-playing record where this album should go: in the direction of hard rock - without compromise.

"The whole world was in a state of great upheaval. Five years earlier, in 1965, the beat bands" Hollies "," The Kinks "and the" Beatles "were still performing together in suits. Well neat and their hair well blown and well laid. That suddenly everything is completely different ", says the Bonn musicologist and rock expert Volkmar Kramarz.

"The Free", "Led Zeppelin", "Black Sabbath" will make "Paranoid" this year. It is a year of unbroken virtuosity for me. That was the breakthrough into a new, progressive time. "

A creative restart as an opportunity

The three co-founders of "Deep Purple", organist Jon Lord, guitarist Ritchie Blackmore and drummer Ian Paice wanted to be part of this new movement. In addition, they were disappointed with the failure of their first albums, which had received little attention in their home country Great Britain and the rest of Europe. They were only noticed in the USA.

The three musicians saw their only chance in a creative new start.

They wanted to forego the interwoven psychedelic sounds and the borrowings from the classical music that had shaped the style of their first three albums. And they no longer wanted to cover strange pieces by the "Beatles", Joe South or Neil Diamond, but only write their own songs.

The singer of Deep Purple, Ian Gillan, at a concert in Milan in 2015 (picture alliance / NurPhoto / Mario Cinquetti)
For the new musical direction, Roger Glover had joined the band as bassist and singer Rod Evans had been replaced by Ian Gillan. Together with the three original members they formed the legendary top line-up, which is considered to be the best in the band's history.

Volkmar Kramarz: "Let's start with Ian Gillan, the singer. He could sing incredibly high, he could hit the notes. Ian Paice on drums together with Roger Glover as bassist. What a pounding, really speedy rhythm group. And then Ritchie Blackmore . He belongs in the middle of these top ten insane guitarists forever. And then of course Jon Lord on the organ. And everyone together brought these talents to all pieces. "

Recording work of six months

Such musical duels between guitar and Hammond organ developed from then on to the trademark of "Deep Purple". Jon Lord, who died in 2012, once humorously described them as loud arguments between himself and Blackmore for supremacy in the band.

"To me, the meat and potatoes at the center of" Deep Purple "is Ritchie’s and my sound in the way it hangs together. And sometimes we have a loud discussion about presidency."

Ian Paice (l) and Roger Glover 2017 in Berlin (picture alliance / Jens Kalaene)

Volkmar Kramarz: "What stood out as a monolith from the whole record, of course, was" Child in time ". This structure, this slow pace, this ever higher rising voice, then these iridescent ecstatic solos. For us these were real works of art. They were for us symphonies of the modern age. "

The recording work for "Deep Purple in Rock" lasted six months. The musicians only needed three days for their debut and three months each in the studio for the two successors.

But this fourth album, released in Germany on September 1st, 1970, was to become a masterpiece. It brought the quintet great commercial success, worldwide recognition and is still considered a milestone in rock history.

Jon Lord: "An album is just a piece of popular culture for the time in which it was created. With a little luck, it will survive the years and will also endure in later epochs."