Earlier this year Glenn Hughes, the former bassist and singer of Deep Purple announced he will be performing solely Deep Purple material and will bring the Glenn Hughes Performs Classic Deep Purple Live tour to the UK. The last sold- out show finally arrived in London’s Electric Ballroom on 15th October 2018 with exclusive support provided by special guest Laurence Jones.
English blues rock guitarist and singer Laurence Jones kicked things off tonight with a funky blues set featuring superb, captivating solos and exceptional vocals. He didn’t just play his guitar, he and his band put on a triumphant performance and kept the audience on their toes. The pace slowed down mid set for the striking performance of “Thunder In The Sky.” This was certainly a stand-out set for me and the crowd cheering came naturally. Jones constantly delivered his moving sound in an unashamedly short set with perfection and the momentum of his performance only seemed to build in stature.
The anticipation grew stronger as we waited for the arrival of the Voice of Rock the one and only Glenn Hughes. As the lights dimmed the cheering crowd fell silent as the intro played during which Hughes took his position last on stage to a sudden roaring crowd. They dived straight into “Stormbringer” and the energy reached an unrecognizable level of excitement 3 songs into the set with “Sail Away” becoming the first of many mass sing-a-longs tonight.
With a genuine love for being on stage, the humbled Glenn Hughes showed immense affection for the crowd as he thanked them for turning up on a Monday night. He openly spoke to the audience and in his own words he proclaimed “rock and roll is breathing. It’s in this room.” Fans relished in the solid performance of “Getting Tighter” dedicated to the late great Tommy Bolin. Axeman Soren Anderson stayed true to the style with the epic solo. He also encouraged the crowd to clap along as they seemed entranced in the music. There was not a note out of place as keyboardist Jepser Bo Hansen displayed his skills in a hauntingly beautiful keys solo.
Hughes’ chunky bass lines coupled with his soaring vocal ability hit each note across the octaves. He gave each track a thorough workout and the serenity displayed during the evocative “Georgia On My Mind” touched our souls. He delivered a hard and heavy version of my favourite song “You Fool No One” which transformed into an extended yet sensational jam. It included another guitar solo, blues and hefty drum work by Fernando Escobedo who performed with unrelenting speed.
The set reached a new height as the crowd went berserk as the bands launched into “Smoke In The Water.” My guess is guess that it appealed to the teen in every older audience member as they aggressively hummed along to the catchy riff.
Hughes provided the hard rock hit that was well suited for the night. There was a growing buzz building for an encore and what better way to finish with one last dance? Fans were treated to an outstanding performance of “Burn.” The Electric Ballroom exploded with excitement as Hughes tore up the bass with his trademark booming bass lines. The joyous celebrations of classic Deep Purple continued as fans erupted with energy when an unexpected guest made a special appearance, none less than Joe Bonamassa! “Mistreated” and “Highway Star” got the Bonamassa treatment- loud and dirty.
Overall, this truly was an unforgettable night as we celebrated the reprisal of classic Deep Purple music from the MK 3 and MK 4 eras with a sprinkling of MK 2. Laurence Jones can testify to his talents with a memorable and moving sound. He’s certainly one to watch out for! The voice of rock himself Mr Glenn Hughes and his sensational band constantly delivered with perfection and created a captivating atmosphere, which was simply incomparable. The sold-out tour proved once again why Hughes is loved so dearly and with a string of dates announced for 2019, it is essential you catch him in a city near you.