Tataaaaaa, here it is: The 25th anniversary release of one of the best live recordings of all times – DEEP PURPLEs „Made In Japan“.
I wasn’t too sure what to expect: „In Rock 25“ set a level that seemed impossible to top for further releases, and „Fireball 25“ finally showed me how brilliant the „Fireball“-recording really was. First problems IMHO came up with „Machine Head 25“ – the anniversary release of the DEEP PURPLE „hit album“ and mega seller – it was nice to get it in excellent sound and also to get the different mixes; but I was missing the things that made „In Rock 25“ and „Fireball 25“ so exciting – all that stuff that has never seen the light of being published over the years. And now „Made In Japan 25″…!? I already have the original CD release, the „Live In Japan“ 3CD set – and now again a 2CD set ahead to buy… sounded a little bit too much to me…
But finally I got the CDs – a typical EMI promotional release – so I can’t say anything about artwork, booklet, etc. The first CD features the original „Made In Japan“ in digitally enhanced sound whilst the second CD offers „Black Night“ and „Speed King“ from Tokyo (17th August) and „Lucille“ from Osaka (16th August), all labeled „previously unreleased“.
So I put CD1 into my CD-player, set the amp to „give the neighbours what they deserve“ and enjoyed a really blasting version of the original „Made In Japan“ set. I haven’t compared it to the mixes on „Live In Japan“, so I can’t say anything about further enhancement or things like that; but I can say for sure that it sounds damn fresh for a 25 years old recording.
Then it was time for the second CD. I was a bit disappointed when looking at the running-time: only about 22 minutes – so it has just the usual Maxi-CD problem: you put it in the player, press „start“ and don’t need to walk away very far, because you have to change the CD soon again. So I set my CD player to „loop mode“ and what should I say? I didn’t change the CD during the next 2 hours. This CD really rocks! „Black Night“ is a really nice take of that song – same goes for „Lucille“; but the real highlight is „Speed King“. Not only that is is a very electric and dynamic version of that song – it also captures a moment when something within the audience seemed to go wrong. I can’t exactly say what it is – maybe a struggle between the audience and security which Ian Gillan tried to solve – hopefully the booklet of the final release will tell us more.
So at the end there are just five words to say „Buy it, you won’t regret!“