Deep Purple
The House of Blue Light


2.5
average

Review

by Nagrarok USER (219 Reviews)
August 21st, 2009 | 31 replies


Release Date: 1987 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Purple fail to keep the reunited quality up...

Deep Purple: A Retrospective

Episode XIV: The House of Blue Light

Though Deep Purple made quite a comeback with their 1984 reunion album Perfect Strangers, things inevitably went wrong again in Mark II. Strained tensions that had remained buried during the recording and touring for Perfect Strangers unfortunately resurfaced, causing a once again unfriendly atmosphere within the band. As a result, the recording of Deep Purple’s 12th studio album The House of Blue Light became difficult, much of it having to be re-recorded. It was released in 1987, three years after it predecessor, and seen as a disappointment among critics and fans alike.

Deep Purple Mk. II was:
- Ian Gillan ~ Vocals, Congas, Harmonica
- Richard Hugh Blackmore ~ Lead Guitar
- Roger David Glover ~ Bass Guitar, Synthesiser
- Jon Douglas Lord ~ Keyboards, Organ
- Ian Anderson Pace ~ Drums

One of Perfect Stranger’s greatest strengths was its creativity and different stylistic approaches, but this is exactly what is lacking on THOBL. Instead, the band sounds too obviously like they want to score a hit single. This is not a real problem yet at the start of the album, as both of the two first songs, Bad Attitude and The Unwritten Law are catchy, enjoyable rockers, but still you feel something is missing there. That little something is the spirit of the entire band, the spirit that made albums such as In Rock and Machine Head so great. Everyone’s playing their parts professionally, but not a single track is greater than the sum of its parts. Add to that a bunch of sub-par songs of the same nature, such as Mad Dog and Hard Lovin’ Woman, which are both repetitive and have an useless and silly synthesizer section, and you’ve already got a slight issue with an album.

The real trouble arises with songs such as Call of the Wild, where Deep Purple is definitely selling out. Remember what Van Halen did with their greatest hit Jump" Remember what Judas Priest did with Turbo" That is exactly what Deep Purple does here, although luckily to a lesser extent. Synth-heavier tracks with a poppy approach are something the boys never should have ventured into.

Still, there are a few little surprises here. Strangeways and The Spanish Archer both incorporate Eastern-flavoured melodies, something also Hungry Daze did on their previous album. This time however, it works a great deal better with the songs. Mitzi Dupree is successful tell-tale by Gillan, and Dead or Alive shows some great interplay between the ever-strong Blackmore and Lord, making for a great last section of the album.

What that all makes of The House of Blue Light, is a very mixed bag which comes off as an unfinished product and misses the spark of classic Deep Purple. That said, the catchy rockers can be quite enjoyable, and even the sub-par tracks to a certain amount. The final section of the album makes for its most enjoyable, in showing some creativity after all. As a whole, however, Deep Purple's 12th is plagued by being way too unfocused, and comes off as a rather average affair, especially for something with the name Deep Purple on it.

Recommended tracks:

Bad Attitude
Dead or Alive
The Unwritten Law



Recent reviews by this author
Genesis Calling All StationsGenesis We Can't Dance
Genesis Invisible TouchGenesis Genesis
Genesis AbacabGenesis Duke
user ratings (220)
Chart.
2.9
good

Comments:Add a Comment 
Nagrarok
August 21st 2009


8588 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

No, I won't stop reviewing for a while. A simple one again.

Douchebag
August 21st 2009


3626 Comments


haha good review as usual.

LepreCon
August 21st 2009


5451 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I've actually yet to hear this one, though it isn't high on my priority list anyways

shindip
August 21st 2009


3536 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I actually like this album a lot, which is odd. Great review though.

shindip
August 21st 2009


3536 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Deep Purple seem to be like Judas priest. They have a few awesome albums but a ton of really shit ones.

FadeToBlack
August 21st 2009


11044 Comments


nice review yet again, you gonna do their discography or something?

Nagrarok
August 21st 2009


8588 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

@shindip: No, I wouldn't compare them to Priest in that way. Plus, DP went through many, many personell changes. The only stuff they did that was real bad came mainly during the period after Perfect Strangers.



@FadetoBlack: I'm certainly planning on that, but I'm going to do it differently now. I'm doing a streak with each Mark (now with II, only 1 album to go), and probably something else in between. Otherwise I'll get real tired of the same band like I experienced with Priest. And non-chronological, which seemed fun for a change.



FadeToBlack
August 21st 2009


11044 Comments


yeah they have a lot of albums, good luck man

Nagrarok
August 21st 2009


8588 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I am NOT going to do all the live albums though. Made in Japan, Made in Europe most probably, and maybe the most recent one. They have, I believe, 18 studio albums. Deep Purple had always been first choice for a disco-review, but I figured I should first expand my work with a more popular band (on Sputnik).

LepreCon
August 21st 2009


5451 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

There, I have pos'd ALL of your reviews, not just the ones i had pos'd on my previous account. Most I've handed out in one day.

Nagrarok
August 21st 2009


8588 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Now, that's a VERY nice thing to do. I hope you've read them all first though, hehe.



Also, rec tracks right added. Forgot about those, probably because of my disinterest in the album.

LepreCon
August 21st 2009


5451 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Read the ones i hadn't read already, which wasn't too many

shindip
August 21st 2009


3536 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

ive posed all of your reviews 2

Nagrarok
August 21st 2009


8588 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Now, that's very nice of both of you. I'll be sure to return the favour (if you deserve them, obviously), although I'm sure I pos'd most of shindip recent work.

LepreCon
August 21st 2009


5451 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

lol i pos'd because they were deserved, I expect no favours whatsoever. That reminds me, I owe a few pos' back to metalstyles, Alligator, Ballstothewall and KILL because the old ones were deleted.

Nagrarok
August 21st 2009


8588 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Ok Conor, I'll make sure not to pos any of your reviews in that case.

LepreCon
August 21st 2009


5451 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Damn straight...wait, hold on a minute there :L

Metalstyles
Emeritus
August 22nd 2009


8573 Comments


great review, i feel that during writing the Priest discography, you have become an excellent reviewer.

That reminds me, I owe a few pos' back to metalstyles, Alligator, Ballstothewall and KILL because the old ones were deleted.
yay, moar pos votes for me. Thanks Conor


13themount
January 16th 2012


173 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

strangeways and mitzee dupree are the only good songs; rest is Purple trying to be an american band and failing or just plain failing.

pedro70512
May 13th 2012


4167 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I rather liked this album when I first heard it. Mad Dog is actually one of my favorites. I guess I'm alone there though (i'm alone, sooo alone...)



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy