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Articles Home » 1990 Articles » Deep Purple - 1990 Slaves And Masters
Deep Purple - 1990 Slaves And Masters

ARTIST: Deep Purple
ALBUM: Slaves And Masters
SERIAL: PD 90535
YEAR: 1990
CD REISSUE: 2006, BMG Japan, BVCM-37685


LINEUP: Joe Lynn Turner - vocals * Ritchie Blackmore - guitars * Roger Glover - bass * Ian Paice - drums * Jon Lord - keyboards

TRACK LISTING: 01 King Of Dreams * 02 The Cut Runs Deep * 03 Fire In The Basement * 04 Truth Hurts * 05 Breakfast In Bed * 06 Love Conquers All * 07 Fortuneteller * 08 Too Much Is Not Enough * 09 Wicked Way


Deep Rainbow? To the horror of Purple fans worldwide this became a reality in 1989 when Ian Gillan was removed from the lineup and replaced by Blackmore's one time mainman during Rainbow's AOR heyday Joe Lynn Turner. I recall to this day the comment in a 1989 Kerrang! that 'grown men were seen openly weeping in the offices' upon discovering the news of Turner's hiring. The notion that Purple would simply be a vehicle for a thinly disguised newer version of Rainbow was quite accurate, as with three members of that band in the fold (Glover the other) it couldn't be anything but. In all honesty I haven't heard this album in years and while not a true representation of Deep Purple it is a more than an adequate piece of melodic hard rock. Typically it was derided by the entire rock world, but it's miles better than 1993's atrocious 'Battle Rages On', which saw Gillan return yet again.

The Songs
Anyone looking for material similar to 'In Rock' or even 'Perfect Strangers' probably listened to this once and discarded it. The truth was Purple had been moving in a more melodic direction on 1987's 'House Of Blue Light', another often dismissed album, unfairly so. With Turner at the helm one was at least guaranteed fine vocal work and it's highly doubtful Purple had recorded anything as commercial or AOR friendly as opener 'King Of Dreams' up to that point. Whoever was curious to hear Rainbow in 1990 must have been thrilled to discover that not much had changed since 1983! Lord's keyboard work is updated to suit that periods particular trends and Paice's drumming might is stifled by the rather simple approach that belies Purple's heaviness. As far as AOR goes it's more than respectable. Standout track to my ears is the blazing 'Cut Runs Deep', where Blackmore turns out the metal riffing accompanied by first rate vocal harmonies. A promising cut for Purple MK 5. 'Fire In The Basement' takes the jazzy 'Lazy' direction with Lord's old fashioned organ work, but 'Truth Hurts' is run of the mill AOR which is a reason this lineup failed. 'Breakfast In Bed' could be top forty pop, hardly representative of a band known as founders of metal and hard rock in general. No power to be found anywhere, paling even to the lightest work found on 'Stormbringer' like 'Holy Man' and 'Love Don't Mean a Thing'. The stalemate continues with 'Love Conquers All', a limp ballad which I'm surprised Blackmore was allowing, considering his resentment of Gillan penned material like 'Mitzee Dupree' from 'House Of Blue Light'. Tried and tested subject matter is handled on 'Fortune Teller', a track which really makes the loss of Gillan's double entendre ridden and inventive lyrics even more glaring. Heavy on pomp is the excellent 'Too Much Is Not Enough', where Lord shines with some brazen synth touches, another reminder of this doomed lineups potential. 'Wicked Ways' is the sensible way to end the album, a credible rocker of all things! Hardly enough to headbang to, but at least sounding more like Purple than Rainbow.

In Summary
Equal parts good and disappointing, this album died a painful death as Turner's inclusion to many was more heinous than Tommy Bolin's! The band managed to complete a tour where they were given the chance to air tracks like 'Burn' that Gillan never sung live. Rainbow tracks were also added which was sacrilege on par with Black Sabbath playing 'Smoke On The Water' with Gillan, to fans of either band! Purple began recording a new album with Turner, but he was given the boot in the midst of the process, allowing Gillan to return for a shoddy album, but more importantly bringing the real voice of Purple back to the fold. Sixteen years later 'Slaves And Masters' seems like it never happened, but there's some tracks to be admired, Purple's AOR fling handled with minimal success.

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#1 | george_the_jack on May 08 2009 18:29:17
One of their better albums in my humble opinion and a very overlooked one...
#2 | gdazegod on May 18 2013 04:18:08
This is a very underrated album for its time. Reading across the Net, I know that Blackmore was very happy with this one, but the hardcore fans couldn't buy into anything other than Gillan, which is a bit myopic. Turner was a last minute addition to the band, and sounds pretty good to me.
#3 | AOR Lee on May 18 2013 06:17:41
I agree, I loved this album. I've also read a fair amount of 'Turner bashing' by diehard Purple fans when commenting on this album. Probably the only DP album to really hold my interest
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