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Various Artists

Re-Machined: A Tribute to Deep Purple's Machine Head

Review by Gary Hill

I’m a big fan of Deep Purple, particularly the classic stuff. So, I was really looking forward to this disc. I’ll say that, for the most part I was satisfied with the results. This isn’t a perfect set, but it’s got a lot of great music here. Getting to check out variants of such classic music is a cool experience.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2012  Volume 6 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Smoke On The Water - Carlos Santana and Jacoby Shaddix

What a daunting task it must be to cover this song, considering it’s got probably the most played guitar lick of any in the world. Well, you can’t get a much better guitarist than Carlos Santana and while this track is very overplayed in my opinion, they really bring something fresh to the table while still capturing the original tone and concept. Santana at times seems to emulate Ritchie Blackmore, while at other points he stretches out into his own unique territory. All in all, though, this thing rocks and the more melodic vocals are a nice touch.

Highway Star – Chickenfoot

This is obviously a live recording and there are a couple parental advisories on the spoken introduction. It’s a bit raw, but it works pretty well. Clearly there’s a bit of a Van Halen vibe here. The instrumental segments on this are pretty awesome.

Maybe I'm A Leo - Glenn Hughes and Chad Smith

It’s kind of odd for Glenn Hughes to be on this since he was in a version of Deep Purple. That said, he probably did this song on stage with them. They sure shift things around, though. It feels like a groove oriented version of what Robin Trower might sound like covering this. It’s a real killer.

Pictures Of Home – Black Label Society
As one might expect, this version rocks out a lot more than the original. Still, they capture much of the spirit and it’s a good rendition.
Never Before - Kings of Chaos

What a cool version this is. In a lot of ways it feels like Deep Purple, but with a bit of a modern groove added to it.

Smoke On The Water – Flaming Lips

Here is a very strange version of the classic tune. The music is laid bare and sort of minimalist electronic sound. The vocals are basically spoken and quite processed. This is OK, but really doesn’t fit with the flow of the set. It would have probably been better as a bonus track.

Lazy - Jimmy Barnes and Joe Bonamassa

As it should be, there’s an extended keyboard solo to open this thing.  After a time Bonamassa’s guitar starts in and we’re off and running. The vocals are quite strong and the keyboards really get plenty of chances to shine here. Of course, Bonamassa’s guitar is also a real star. This is one of my favorites of the whole set.

Space Truckin' - Iron Maiden

Maiden puts in a screaming, but rather raw rendition of the cut. It’s a high energy romp that works pretty well.

When A Blind Man Cries – Metallica

With a great melodic sound that borders on the mellower sections on psychedelia, this is not what I expected from Metallica. They really do a great job, though. It’s another highlight of the set.

Highway Star – Glenn Hughes/Steve Vai/Chad Smith

A bonus track, there’s a psychedelic styled jam that opens it. From there we get a screaming hot rendition that’s pretty faithful while ramping it up a bit.

 
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