New from Deep Purple: From Epic Guitars to a Spoken-Word Warning from Ian Gillan, ‘Man Alive’ is a Proggy Adventure (Listen)


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Rock Cellar Magazine
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Deep Purple may have postponed the release of its new studio album Whoosh! to August 7 due to the COVID_19 pandemic, but the prog-rock band has been steadily releasing new songs as a preview nonetheless.

The latest is “Man Alive,” a particularly epic-sounding composition that premiered via Billboard on Thursday. A hushed, dramatic introduction builds into a proggy climb, before an intense spoken-word segment from vocalist Ian Gillan warns of the end of humanity.

It’s a grandiose affair:

Said Gillan to Billboard of the spoken-word part:

“The (song) suddenly goes very quiet,” Gillan explains. “Don (Airey, keyboardist) was experimenting with an oboe to do a haunting, repetitive little piece to illustrate the echoes of emptiness. So I just started speaking at the microphone and it fit perfectly. It just had to be something that wasn’t sung — it was almost like a voice bubble attached to the song. It just seemed to be the right thing to do.”

“Man Alive” follows previous Deep Purple single “Throw My Bones,” a call-to-action that has a heavily stylized music video:

As for the album’s title, Whoosh!? Gillan summed it up pretty easily to Billboard:

“I look back at the 1970s as if it was yesterday and, whoosh, here we are now.”

Fair enough!


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