Customer Reviews: Deep Purple - They All Came Down To Montreux: Live At Montreux 2006
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4.4 out of 5 stars17
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on March 7, 2014
These (aging) rockers are in their finest form at this show, and the video is well shot and edited -- like being right down there in the front row.
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on June 6, 2013
A very solid, live performance. The music is great. My only complaint is sometimes Ian Gillan's voice gives out a little. (Try singing those high notes at his age!) Overall, very good and well produced.
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I am a fan of most of the various incarnations of Deep Purple, and while I didn't rush to buy this DVD, I'm glad I finally picked it up. "Deep Purple Live at Montreux 2006" comes in a two DVD format with one complete concert, one abridged club set, and lots of interviews that are fascinating. I must admit that while it's wonderful to see them at the Montreux Jazz Festival, this is not among the very best concerts from an audio perspective I have ever heard. At some points the sound mix is strange and instruments that are normally front and center in certain passages are buried far back in the mix: this is most noticeable with Don Airey's keyboard parts in a few places, while the worst case is Morse's guitar being totally buried under Roger Glover's bass on "Black Night." It is also true that Ian Gillan's voice is not what it used to be, as he struggles to reach some high notes and his timing is off a in a couple of instances (perhaps most notably during "Smoke on the Water".) I don't really think of that as a huge deficit as the alternative of him not singing and the band not touring would be a much worse option. Oddly, I saw them live last year and I thought his voice sounded much better then than on this DVD, so perhaps he just didn't have a great night when this was recorded (or maybe I just like them with the orchestra better.)

The show is a standard set list from the era, with notable variations for the festival: I particularly enjoyed the jazz introduction to "Smoke on the Water" and Gillan's introduction ("it was written just down the road....") Standouts were the very extended Morse demo "The Well-Dressed Guitar" which is off the charts here, and the rousing version of "Hush," which is always a crowd pleaser. The Montreux performance features some special guests including famed founder of the Montreux Jazz Festival Claude Nobs, who was, of course, immortalized for his heroics as "Funky Claude" in "Smoke on the Water." You will enjoy his harmonica and duet with Gillian on "Too Much Fun" (during which they both have to read the lyrics off a sheet of paper.)

The bottom line is that the Montreux gig was a beautifully shot though occasionally flawed performance. The rhythm powerhouse combo of Paice and Glover were spot on, and Steve Morse was simply outstanding. Airey was very good as well, and Gillan was an old pro who worked the audience with humor, and made them appreciate him in spite of the difficulty of living up to the legend of his own voice from forty years ago.

The second DVD has an abbreviated set recorded in London's "Hard Rock Cafe," a decidedly cramped venue, which begets a more intimate and slower show than normal. It has terrible acoustics and while it might appeal to people who always wanted to see Deep Purple in a nightclub, the constraints of the small room and bad sound quality didn't help me to enjoy the show. While I am normally a huge Steve Morse fan, I was particularly unimpressed with his work during this gig, and especially his solo on "Smoke on the Water."

After watching the concerts, I was honestly divided about how to rate this set, but for me the lengthy interviews in the extras took it over the top. These extras are divided into general subjects, and everyone gets a chance to speak. "The Story of 'Smoke on the Water'" interviews both Ians and Roger Glover about the casino fire and its aftermath. Roger explains how exactly they ended up at the Grand Hotel after being kicked out of the Pavilion; he goes on to detail how he thought up the song title and he and Ian came up with the rock classic very quickly. It's not groundbreaking for people who know the story, but it's compellingly told and fun to watch. There is a great segment on improvisation where all five are interviewed. If you have seen or heard multiple performances from these guys you know each is a bit different, which accounts for much of their charm I think. I enjoyed them discussing getting backed into a musical corner: Ian Paice says "We call them horse's eyes" because their eyes get really big on stage as they look at each other and think "OK, what happens now?"

There are several other segments that highlight relative newcomers Don Airey and Steve Morse: I particularly appreciated how Gillan spent so much time explaining how Morse reinvigorated the band and really helped it survive the tremendous upheaval after Blackmore's departure when Blackmore "walked out in the middle of a tour and left us high and dry." Besides that, Morse is an amazing guitarist and seems to be an all-around nice guy. There are also segments on Montreux and the Montreux Jazz Festival that are interesting, a segment called "Ian Gillan's Voice," and "Steve Morse's Wrist" where he discusses breaking his wrist and playing with a cast on. (Though it's not covered here, he also ground down part of the back of his guitar to accommodate the cast.) It was quite agonizing to perform that way, but these guys just love to play.

While there are other Deep Purple performances I prefer to these two shows, they are still worth watching (especially the Montreux performance) and the overall package is a delight. I recommend it to any fan.
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on May 22, 2011
I'm really surprised at just how magnificent of a performance this show turned out to be.

I admit, I went in expecting a bunch of musicians who should have retired years ago still dragging on and attempting to rock the house down but ending up sounding (and looking) like a sad image of what they used to be. I was 100% completely WRONG!

This performance absolutely rocks with just as much aggression and energy as, dare I say, the legendary Made In Japan live classic released back in the early 70's.

The biggest problem is that Ian Gillan can no longer hit the high notes without his voice falling apart. This was actually a problem 25 years ago around the time Black Sabbath's Born Again was released, but his voice has unfortunately gotten even worse. He just can't hit those high notes anymore, as evident by the way he was sweating and struggling to do so by pausing for a moment to build up the strength and attempt it. However, he has apparently developed an ability to hide this fact because he can still sing the more restrained verse melodies really well. He just can't scream like he used to back in the 70's.

Besides really botching "Space Truckin", Ian Gillan didn't become too much of a distraction with his vocal mistakes. Oh, and on an unrelated note, he sure does resemble William Shatner in the face!

I also admired the way Ian Gillan would communicate with the audience. He was very friendly, likeable and made jokes constantly. Of course, that one moment when he made what I consider a racist joke was very very odd and out of place to say the least. I know he meant it in a light-hearted way, but it was still a bit shocking to witness.

I really like the way Ian Gillan would introduce the rest of the band. He didn't do so all at once- he'd introduce one band member at a time, they'd perform an amazing solo for a few minutes, and then 20 minutes later Ian would introduce another band member and repeat the process all over again. It was amazing and allowed both the audience at the concert and those of us at home to appreciate these dazzling solo performances by the band members on their respective musical instrument when the time came to do so.

Steve Morse has officially won me over with his melodic guitar playing skills. He played the guitar very very well throughout the performance and I absolutely loved the majority of the notes he was hitting. A natural talent for being memorable, that just about describes his guitar playing abilities. He's no Ritchie Blackmore of course, and I admit I *was* hoping for a surprise appearance by Ritchie even though I secretly knew it wouldn't happen, but well... there you have it.

I did feel that "Smoke on the Water" was considerably softer than the studio version we've all been hearing for years now, but you know, most of the guitar solos and Ian Gillan's stage antics were always exciting and memorable enough that any complaints about the songs themselves weren't ever really worth taking into consideration. Definitely not worth comparing to other versions either.

Starting the show with "Pictures of Home" was a brilliant idea too. I loved it.

Overall, I'm surprised Ian Gillan still has the energy to make a concert like this happen, and the same applies to the rest of the band. This performance really proves that, no matter the age, with enough determination, a return to the glory days is entirely in the realm of possibility. I was certainly proven wrong about old guys reaching a certain age where they're no longer able to rock, because this concert lives up to the hype. A great show.
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on February 18, 2011
I seen Deep Purple about 8 or so years ago and the show I seen blew me away, They put a wall of sound up that you could feel rattling your back teeth, They where coined as being the LOUDEST pop band by the Gunniness book of world records. What I seen on this DVD sounded like a bunch of Nancy boys, I know they are a bit older and longer in the tooth but listen to Perfect strangers, where is the drive behind that song that we all fell in love with? It sounded like the Hansen brothers and not rocks loudest band. Where there should have been pounding guitars there was tapping on the keyboards. I guess they got old.
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on December 23, 2010
I have been a fan of Deep Purple for a long period of my life and have listened to every era of the awesome band. Yes we all have are favorite albums and a lot of people will say they don't have or their not the same with out Blackmore and Lord. We can argue that til we all turn Blue right?? Well anyway there are a few things I would have liked to see in the set list.but over all the set is fine. The sound varies on this performance and the new material from the time of this recording rocks! I prefer Gillan's voice on another dvd of his solo band from around the same time but he does an awesome job over all for this gig. Don't worry in my opinion there is nothing to get to concerned about when you buy this crank it up and listen to one of the greatest bands that ever graced rock music!
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on November 8, 2008
The 1st show & 2nd second both Smoke but the keys at the London Hard Rock are very very low in the mix.
Low enough to annoy this listner...who ever was on the mixing board messed up a quality show.
We should'nt have to strain our ears to here those keys !
The keys in Purple are necessary & needed.

still 5 stars though
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on September 11, 2008
One of the greatest band of all time. Gillan is not the same, but still Rocks. A little short but good.
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on January 29, 2008
Live At Montreux 2006 is really one of my favouritest shows not only from deep purple. The band of 60 years musicians delivers such a great sound, such a heavy sound that many other modern band can't.

I guess that Deep Purple is the King Of Live Performances!
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on September 4, 2007
I have been a Deep Purple fan for over 25 years and own many records, cds and dvds of them in concert. This particular dvd is one of their best period. Whenever Deep Purple plays at Montreux, it is bound to be a special event, and this show lives up to any expectation anyone could have. The band is tight w/ all their arrengments yet loose enough that they can improvise on some of their most known and popular songs and maintain the essence of what Deep Purple has always been. Steve Morse's guitar playing is immpecable, presice and fluid. Don Airey had some big shoes to fill w/ the departure of Jon Lord, but he shows on this dvd that he is on par w/ any keybord player in the history of rock music (as well as classical and jazz). Ian Gillan's legendary voice still rocks like it did when he first sang about the Montreux Jazz Festival back in '71. Ian Pace and Roger Glover show us why they still are one of the best drum and bass combos ever. In short, if you are a Deep Purple fan you will like this dvd. After all, can the 40th Anniversay of the Montreux Jass Festival get any better then Deep Purple headlining it?
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