Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Deep Purple with Orchestra, The Songs That Built Rock, LG Arena, Birmingham, 27/11/11

Quite simply, magnificent! The best band to walk the earth 1968 - 2011.

Whilst many still have their doubts about the continuing viability of Deep Purple, there probably weren't many of those present at the Birmingham NEC on this evening.

Backed up by a 28 piece orchestra, the band were simply on fire.

Yes, there were no surprises in the set list, indeed it was identical to that of the current DVD/CD, but that does not detract the supreme musicianship of the old masters: Ian Paice on drums - the best in the business, Roger Glover on bass - quite sublime, frontman Ian Gillan on great form, Steve Morse on guitar - now been in Deep Purple longer than the man in black, and Don Airey on keyboards - now well established and paying homage to the sadly unwell Jon Lord.

Ian Paice has said that they'll know when it's time to finish, but on this evidence that'll be a couple of years yet - let's just hope there's a (long overdue) album in the pipeline.

As I said on the DPAS site:

"The kind of magical sound produced by these musicians could only be performed by the greatest band ever to walk the planet. I wasn’t around to see Purple in their 1970s pomp, but I’ve seen them many times since the reunion and this was the best. In fact, it gives me hope for another few good years!"



Roger Glover


Steve Morse

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Ebbw Vale 50 Glamorgan Wanderers 11, 19/11/11

Ebbw Vale recorded another comfortable win against limited opposition to secure their place at the top of Division One East, a victory made all the sweeter by being against a side who have often been the club's nemesis.

That said the Wanderers provided a little more with ball in hand than some recent opposition which belied their lowly position in the table, and, with the evergreen Gareth Cull still kicking well, I'd expect them to record a few more wins in the 2nd half of the season.

As for Ebbw, it was the usual case of being fitter, faster and just better in every aspect of the game.

From the Ebbw website:

The second half of the league season began with a double for Ebbw, as they continued their winning streak to defeat Glamorgan Wanderers by 50 points to 11 at Eugene Cross Park on Saturday, scoring 7 tries in the process and bagging yet another bonus point.

The game started well for Wanderers as they put pressure on the home defence, winning a penalty that Gareth Cull converted. Cull missed a second shot before Tom Macpherson grabbed Ebbw's first, beautifully converted by Dorian Jones. Ten minutes later, Charlie Simpson scored a second and this was followed before half time by tries for Dan Haymond, on in place of Tristan Davies who was stretchered off, and another for the pacy Macpherson, to send the Steelmen in 26-6 up with the bonus point secured.

Wanderers scored a well worked try early on, Mike Stephens crossing wide out but after that it was one-way traffic as Ebbw's forwards won a plentiful supply of ball and the backs put together some excellent running rugby. A Jones penalty made it 29-11, and tries followed for Dan Dearden, Dan Haymond and Dai Jones. Dorian Jones contributed 15 points through 6 conversions and a penalty.

In another outstanding team performance, Josh Powell was awarded the Man of the Match accolade - but, again, it could have gone to any number of players, including Ronnie Keynes, Ashley Sweet and Dan Haymond.

All at Ebbw Vale RFC were pleased to see Tristan Davies return to the club this evening following the Wanderers game. Tristan suffered a nasty knock while challenging for the ball during the early stages of the game and was taken to Nevill Hall Hospital for assessment, where he was given the 'all clear'.


Friday, November 18, 2011

Glenn Hughes, The Glee Club, Cardiff, 16/11/11

Former Deep Purple man Glenn Hughes took in Cardiff as part of his book promotion tour and entertained us with an evening of spoken word and acoustic music.

Whilst taking pics was a little difficult, I did manage a few video clips (below) and got the autobiography signed.

Set list (I think)
It's Only A Dream
Coast To Coast
Will Our Love End
What Is a Woman's Role
Holy Man (video)
From Now On
This House
Too Late to Save the World
Little Secret
Faithless (video)
I Don't Want to Live That Way Again (video)

plus Cold as an encore.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Black Sabbath - Reunited in 2012

Forget the gloomy economic news. Forget any other news. There is only 1 story in town.

They're back. Click here.

Monday, November 7, 2011

UFO, UK Tour, 2012

They're back and, so far, age has not wearied them.

Formed back in 1969, and survivors of multiple line up changes, the beating heart of UFO remains strong and they're back again next year, O2 Academy, Bristol, Sunday 25th March, just after the clocks go forward, and if that doesn't start spring with a bang, nothing will.

Full tour details here on the UFO website.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Ebbw Vale 34 Rumney 5, 05/11/11

Ebbw Vale recored another bonus point victory and, with Newbridge losing at Gilfach Goch, went to the top of the table, where we hope they'll stay.

Opponents Rumney were dogged and not a little cynical. In fact, their only try came from a bizarre moment when play continued with 2 balls on the field, and our defence unsurprisingly a little stretched.

In fact that probably summed up a pedantic and slightly shambolic display from another WRU joker with a whistle who seemed intent on maximising the number of scrums.

From the Ebbw website:

Ebbw Vale returned to the top of the D1E table for the first time since the win at Bedlinog in April which saw them capture the championship on the season's final day. It was pretty much business as usual for the Steelmen as they dominated every aspect of the game and scored 5 excellent tries against a struggling but dogged Rumney team who looked every inch a bottom three outfit. The visitors have developed a well-earned reputation as one of the division's strongest scrummaging sides and must have fancied their chances, given the absence of four of Ebbw's most experienced front rowers in Ross Jones, Mathew Williams, Robert Sevenoaks and Jonathan Williams. However, the young trio of Josh Powell, Ben Parry and Dan Goode confronted the challenge and emerged covered in glory, having given their opposite numbers a torrid time and laid the foundation of their team's 34-5 victory.

Man of the match was again Ashley Sweet, but, to be honest, I could have written that before the game.


An early scrum

and another...

ooo look, a scrum

Thank goodness for class like Ashley Sweet...

... time...

...and again

Early 2nd half pressure