Monday, November 24, 2008

70. Deep Purple - Machine Head

My friend's older brother had a Deep Purple poster hanging in his room. On the poster were the lyrics to Smoke on the Water. Steve, the brother, would always take the time to tell us the story behind the lyrics. Except the story changed every time. The more he told it, the more embellished it became until Steve was actually there when it happened, even though he was only about 16 years old and Swiss cheese was the closest he ever got to Switzerland.

This album has some really good, heavy songs. I love Space Truckin and Highway Star but, let's face it, this album is Smoke on the Water and for that I will always hold a slight grudge against Deep Purple.

If you've ever had a kid who plays guitar, you know what I mean. It's the first rock song they learn. No, not even song. It's the first riff they learn.


Over. And over. And over.

And then your kid gets good and he learns to play other songs and he's moved on to Pink Floyd and Pantera and you take him to Guitar Center every Saturday so he can sit around and try out all the guitars and amps you can't afford to buy him and there are twenty other budding guitarists in the store, ranging in age from ten to 70, and they are all playing Smoke on the Water as if they invented it.

It echoes in your head. All day long. Every day. You tell your kid you'll give him ten bucks for every time he doesn't play it and then his friends come over and they start playing it and finally, your kid gives up the guitar for his Xbox and you think you never have to hear that song again and then one winter night, you hear a familiar sound coming from the neighbor's garage and your hair stands on end and your heart sinks because the neighbor's kid got himself a guitar and you know what the next couple of weeks are going to be like, so you announce on twitter:

Neighbor's kid needs to knock it off with the E-A-B-E-A-B-A-E-A-B-E-A or I'll beat him with his guitar til he's a nice shade of Deep Purple.

And then you make a silent vow to yourself to never buy your nephew a guitar.

Favorite song: Space Truckin
Album wiki


Thunder said...

I'm just now learning the bass, so my family will now curse you for planting the suggestion that I master these notes!

And this was forced listening for me growing up. My pops turns 64 on Dec. 26th, so he was 28 when this came out. I'm no spring chicken: I was alive and requesting music at this point. My very first record of my own was Band On the Run, followed by Brownsville Station's Smokin' in the Boys Room, both 45s.

So I am biased against this album, because it's my parents' music!

And every friend of mine who ever "discovered" marijuana, subsequently "discovered" this album!

muffy jorn said...

My son took cello lessons in I think maybe 5th grade. The first thing he played by ear was a riff of Smoke on the Water. On a cello. Next was a Coke commercial. He only played for one semester, for which I thank God or the boring teacher.

steelopus said...

G-Bb-C G-Bb-Db-C G-Bb-C-Bb-G

I'm not a well-versed Deep Purple fan by any stretch of the imagination, but I wish I was. I should spend more time with their albums. Machine Head is freaking awesome, no doubt.

Also, while we're on the subject of Deep Purple... here is one of my favorite @andersonscooper tweets.

Solonor Rasreth said...

If we're gonna get picky, Steel, it's not played as chords anyway, but I don't think that was Michele's point. :)

This is a wicked fun album, no doubt.