Deep Purple in Rock

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Deep Purple in Rock
Deep Purple in Rock.jpg
Studio album by Deep Purple
Released 3 June 1970 (1970-06-03)
Recorded 14 October 1969 – 13 April 1970
Length 43:30
Label Harvest
Producer Deep Purple
Deep Purple chronology
Deep Purple
Deep Purple in Rock
25th anniversary edition
25th anniversary edition

Deep Purple in Rock, also known as In Rock, is the fourth studio album by English rock band Deep Purple, released on 3 June 1970. It was the first studio album recorded by the Mark II line-up. Rod Evans (vocals) and Nick Simper (bass) had been fired in June 1969 and were replaced by Ian Gillan and Roger Glover, respectively.

Deep Purple in Rock was the band's breakthrough album in Europe and peaked at No. 4 in the UK, remaining in the charts for months. (The band's prior MK I albums had been much better received in the United States and Canada than in their homeland.) An accompanying single, "Black Night" reached No. 2. The album was supported by the successful In Rock World Tour, which lasted 15 months.


Deep Purple MkII were formed in June 1969, after founding members Ritchie Blackmore, Jon Lord and Ian Paice decided to replace original lead singer Rod Evans with someone who could tackle a hard rock style. The three went to see a gig by local band Episode Six on 4 June, and after Blackmore sat in with the band, they offered vocalist Ian Gillan the job.[1]

While the original lineup of Deep Purple included experienced musicians, none of the five were accomplished songwriters.[2] Thus, Deep Purple's earlier work ranged from psychedelic hard rock built around Blackmore riffs, to classical-influenced tracks developed and arranged by Lord, to cover songs that ranged from The Beatles to Neil Diamond, among others.[citation needed] Gillan and Episode Six bassist Roger Glover had a good amount of songwriting experience, and consequently Glover was also recruited into the band.[3]

The group began to tour extensively, and found they had good musical chemistry together.[4] Hanwell Community Centre was booked for the band to rehearse and write new material. The basic structure of "Child in Time" was worked out at these sessions.[5] "Flight of the Rat" evolved during rehearsals from a humorous re-arrangement of "Flight of the Bumble Bee" by Glover.[6]

The album was recorded at IBC Studios in London, with the first sessions in October. Recording was spaced out between gigs, which were needed to provide the band with income, and continued intermittently until May the following year.[6]

Lord used both the Leslie speaker and a Marshall amplifier with his Hammond organ, therefore the organ sound varies a lot throughout the songs. (Example: "Living Wreck" – Leslie speaker, "Hard Lovin' Man" – Marshall amplifier).

The cover depicts the band in a rock sculpture inspired by Mount Rushmore.

People say, 'oh, what's your favourite album?' To me it's always In Rock, because that's the nucleus of where we came from.

— Bassist Roger Glover[7]

Song information

"Speed King"

As the liner notes for the LP allude ("A few roots…replanted"), "Speed King" is an ode to early rock-and-roll, with references to songs performed by Little Richard ("Good Golly Miss Molly," "Tutti-Frutti" and "Lucille"), as well as Elvis Presley and Chuck Berry. The original UK version of the album includes the full introductory instrumental, featuring a loud free-form Blackmore guitar passage blending into a quieter Lord organ piece; the U.S. version did not include the intro. The hard-rocking song features a midsection "call-and-answer" solo exchange between Blackmore and Lord, which presaged their live performances for years to come; it was regularly played at concerts during the Mark II era, starting as an opener, but more frequently performed as an encore. It was also the b-side of the non-album single "Black Night".


Another hard rocker featuring a midsection exchange between Blackmore and Lord, with Gillan literally screaming out the final verse. The Mark VII version of Deep Purple (featuring Steve Morse on guitar) re-recorded this song for their 1998 release Abandon, with the revised title of "Bludsucker".

"Child in Time"

Considered one of the most prominent songs of the Mark II era, especially before the release of "Smoke on the Water" in 1972, "Child in Time" goes from quiet sadness to bombastic rocker and back again in a track running over 10 minutes. Lord's organ is most prominent in the quieter parts, as he plays a chord structure inspired by[8] a song by It's a Beautiful Day titled "Bombay Calling". In return It's a Beautiful Day recorded "Wring that Neck" from Deep Purple and called it "Don and Dewey". Gillan's vocals begin softly, evolve into howling and lastly demonstrate his ability to "scream in tune". Blackmore then launches into a guitar solo running over two minutes, before the first verse repeats and the song comes to a crashing end. It would be a concert staple for every version of Deep Purple that included Gillan, up until the singer's voice could no longer support it.

Ian Gillan tells on his homepage:

"It was 1969 and the band was rehearsing at a Community Centre in West London; it was either Southall or Hanwell. Jon Lord was dicking around (or 'extemporising on a theme' as it's known in the trade) with a tune from the new album by 'It's a Beautiful Day', it was 'Bombay Calling'. I started singing and the words came easily because we were all aware of the nuclear threat which hovered over us at this time which was probably when the 'cold war' was at its hottest."[9]

"Flight of the Rat"

A hard-rock song featuring a straight-ahead structure of three main power chords. Unlike the call-and-answer solo structure of "Speed King" and "Bloodsucker," Blackmore, Paice and Lord are each accorded their own extended solos on this song. This song was never performed live.

This song was used in the movie The Damned United.

"Into the Fire"

A staple of early Mark II concerts, the song starts with a hooky introductory riff (slightly similar to that in King Crimson's "21st Century Schizoid Man"), and two main chords which are octaves of each other.

"Living Wreck"

A straight-ahead rocker that tells the story of a love affair that fails to live up to expectations. Features a phased and unusually slow guitar solo by Blackmore.

"Hard Lovin' Man"

Two power chords kick off the album's closer, before Glover's bass provides the rhythmic intro. Blackmore's guitar is folded in, then Paice and Lord join in before the vocals start. Gillan lets loose and Blackmore performs a few "pre-Eddie Van Halen" guitar histrionics during the final minute-and-a-half.

Later editions

In some countries, including Mexico, Deep Purple in Rock also included "Black Night", a single recorded during the sessions.

The U.S. release of the album cut the intro to "Speed King", which lasts just over a minute. It remains edited on the standard Warner Bros. U.S. release, but was restored to full length on the 25th Anniversary package.

In 1995 a remastered and revised 25th anniversary edition of the album was released by EMI. The remastering and remixing job was overseen by Roger Glover. The album features a number of bonus songs including previously unreleased jams. In 2013, this particular edition of the album turned Gold in the UK.

On 21 July 2009 audiophile label Audio Fidelity released a remastered version of Deep Purple in Rock on a limited edition 24 karat gold CD. Mastering for the CD was performed by Steve Hoffman. This release follows the original 7-track format with no bonus tracks.


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[10]
BBC (favourable)[11]

In 2005 the album won the Classic Rock Roll of Honour Awards (given by the British monthly magazine Classic Rock) in the category Classic Album. The award was presented to Ian Gillan, Ian Paice, Jon Lord and Ritchie Blackmore.

Track listing

All tracks written by Ritchie Blackmore, Ian Gillan, Roger Glover, Jon Lord and Ian Paice.

Side one
No. Title Length
1. "Speed King" 5:52
2. "Bloodsucker" 4:16
3. "Child in Time" 10:18
Side two
No. Title Length
4. "Flight of the Rat" 7:53
5. "Into the Fire" 3:30
6. "Living Wreck" 4:31
7. "Hard Lovin' Man" 7:11


Deep Purple

Additional personnel

  • Andy Knight – engineer IBC Studios (tracks 1, 3, 5 and 6)
  • Martin Birch – engineer De Lane Lea (tracks 4 and 7)
  • Phil McDonald – engineer Abbey Road Studios (track 2)
  • Peter Mew – Original album remastering
  • Roger Glover – Oversaw the mixing of the extra tracks
  • Tom Bender and Jason Butera – Additional studio work



Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Argentina (CAPIF)[15] Gold 30,000^
France (SNEP)[16] Gold 100,000*
Germany (BVMI)[17] Gold 250,000^
Netherlands (NVPI)[18] Gold 50,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[19] Gold 100,000^
United States (RIAA)[20] Gold 500,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone


Publication Country Accolade Year Rank
Kerrang! United Kingdom "100 Greatest Heavy Metal Albums of All Time"[21] 1989 15
Guitarist United Kingdom "Top 50 Most Influential Guitar Albums of All Time Ever"[22] 1994 8
Q United Kingdom "50 Best Albums of The '70's"[23] 1998 48
Kerrang! United Kingdom "100 Best British Rock Albums Ever"[24] 2005 56
Classic Rock United Kingdom "100 Greatest British Rock Album Ever"[25] 2006 13
1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die United States "1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die"[26] 2006 *

(*) designates unordered lists.


  1. ^ Thompson 2004, p. 69.
  2. ^ Anasontzis, George (2010). "Nick Simper". Archived from the original on 30 August 2010. Retrieved 7 January 2014. 
  3. ^ Thompson 2004, p. 70.
  4. ^ Thompson 2004, p. 73.
  5. ^ Thompson 2004, p. 77.
  6. ^ a b Thompson 2004, p. 87.
  7. ^ [1] Panagiotopoulos, Stathis; Review of Made in Japan including quotes from Roger Glover; October, 2013.
  8. ^ Ian Gillan on Deep Purple: The Interview picture disc, 1984.
  9. ^ Gillan, Ian. "Wordography – 16 'Child in Time'". Retrieved 2014-09-18. 
  10. ^ Rivadavia, Eduardo. Deep Purple in Rock at AllMusic
  11. ^ BBC review
  12. ^ German Album Charts 1970
  13. ^
  14. ^ "Singles". Deep Purple. Official Chart Company. Retrieved 30 January 2014. 
  15. ^ "Argentinian album certifications – Deep Purple – Deep Purple in Rock". Argentine Chamber of Phonograms and Videograms Producers. 
  16. ^ "French album certifications – Deep Purple – Deep Purple in Rock" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. 
  17. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Deep Purple; 'Deep Purple in Rock')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. 
  18. ^ "Dutch album certifications – Deep Purple – Deep Purple in Rock" (in Dutch). Nederlandse Vereniging van Producenten en Importeurs van beeld- en geluidsdragers. 
  19. ^ "British album certifications – Deep Purple – Deep Purple in Rock". British Phonographic Industry.  Select albums in the Format field. Select Gold in the Certification field. Enter Deep Purple in Rock in the search field and then press Enter.
  20. ^ "American album certifications – Deep Purple – Deep Purple in Rock". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH
  21. ^ "Kerrang – 100 Greatest Heavy Metal Albums of All Time – January 1989". Kerrang. Retrieved 10 February 2009. 
  22. ^ "Guitarist – Top 50 Most Influential Guitar Albums of All Time Ever – December 1994". Kerrang. Retrieved 10 February 2009. 
  23. ^ "Q – 50 Best Albums of The '70's – April 1998". Kerrang. Retrieved 10 February 2009. 
  24. ^ "Kerrang – 100 Best British Rock Albums Ever – February 2005". Kerrang. Retrieved 10 February 2009. 
  25. ^ "Classic Rock – 100 Greatest British Rock Album Ever – April 2006". Classic Rock. Retrieved 10 February 2009. 
  26. ^ Robert Dimery; Michael Lydon (7 February 2006). 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die: Revised and Updated Edition. Universe. ISBN 0-7893-1371-5. 
  • Thompson, Dave (2004). Smoke on the Water: The Deep Purple Story. ECW Press. ISBN 978-1-55022-618-8. 

External links

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