For this week’s album of the week, I wanted to choose an album from a band that I respected and was in the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame. So, the band i chose for today is none other than this years inductee Deep Purple and I chose their album Perfect Strangers. Perfect Strangers was the band’s first album since 1975’s Come Taste The Band and it was the first album since 1973’s Who Do We Think We Are with the mark II lineup. The mark II lineup consisted of Ritchie Blackmore (Guitar), Roger Glover (Bass), Ian Gillan (Vocals), Jon Lord (Keys and Organ), and Ian Paice (Drums). It is the most successful album the band had ever recorded in their careers and cemented them as legends as their tour out-grossed every artist except Bruce Springsteen. The album peaked at number 17 on The Billboard Top 200 charts and it went number one in Switzerland. The album also peaked at number two in Norway and Germany, three in Sweden, and five in the UK and Austria. The album went Platinum both in the US and Canada (even though the measurements are different) and Gold in the UK and Germany. Kerrang! Magazine also voted it the number 7TH ranked album in their end of the year lists for top albums of 1984.
1. Knocking At Your Back Door– This is definitely one of the funniest stories because just from the title you can imagine what the song is about. Ian Gillan tells the story, “There’s this guy named Redbeard, from a radio station down in Texas. He phoned me up after it had been played on every radio station in America and said, ‘Is this what I think it’s about?’ And I said, ‘Yeah.’ And he said, ‘It’s amazing, every radio station in America is playing a song written about anal sex and they don’t even realize what’s going on.’ And I was like, well it’s not in-your-face anal sex, it’s just a joke. It just came about with the lyrics. It’s no big deal. But it’s a humorous thing and not meant to be offensive. And I think it was just an afterthought. It certainly wasn’t what inspired the song.” 5/5
2. Under the Gun– a very cool track with some cool organ playing over the sonic assault of Blackmore in a track that was conscious of the issues facing the world. 4.5/5
3. Nobody’s Home– The track starts off with a cool intro before the guitars kick in this cool track about a relationship gone wrong. 4/5
4. Mean Streak– rock and roll madness about a girl that is a complete bad ass mamba that no one wants to mess with. 4/5
5. Perfect Strangers– The title track to the album is one of my all time favorite Deep Purple tracks and one of my favorite riffs from them. The song deals with reincarnation in means of one talking to their former self. The only problem is that present and past must remain perfect strangers. Ritchie Blackmore has also gone on to say that it’s his favorite song ever even with the fact that it doesn’t contain a guitar solo. 5/5
6. A Gypsy’s Kiss– a pretty cool track that starts off bluesy with a charging riff before the band kicks in and raises the octane in this track where he describes various people from various areas of the world. 4/5
7. Wasted Sunsets– A slower tempo than most of the track on the album with a real bluesy feel to it about a guy who realizes that way too many days have passed him by. 4.5/5
8. Hungry Daze– A cool rock track with some of that excellent playing from Jon Lord in a track that is retrospective of the band’s career. 4/5
9. Not Responsible– On some formats this was a bonus track and it has a monstrous riff to it that rocks in this track that deals with a guy who does what he wants on this journey called life and says he is not responsible for what occurs. It was the first track the band did that featured profanity in the lyrics. 4/5
My Final Thoughts– As I said, this was definitely one of my favorite Deep Purple records and it showcased what the band was capable of and they were more mature by that time. There are some real classics on this album that should not be ignored. I am going to give the album 4.3 stars out of five for a final grade.