By: Gary Graff
Hitting stores today (April 30) is "Now What?!," the first new album from Deep Purple in eight years.
The 12-song set was recorded in Nashville and produced by Bob Ezrin (Pink Floyd, Alice Cooper, Kiss) and is the second to feature keyboardist Don Airey in place of the late Jon Lord.
Frontman Ian Gillan tells us the long break between albums was not by design but speaks to Deep Purple's current attitude towards recording these days:
"There was no sense of urgency within the band to do this. We're having such a great time on the road...We played in 48 countries last year and the year before, five cities a week. It's just perfect, and the band was just so hot. I guess it was mentioned from time to time -- 'What do you think? Should we make a new record? People keep talking about it.' 'Yeah, OK, well maybe next year' and nothing really happened. We'd seen no reason to do it. There was no trigger. And, again, we were in a good position with all the work we were doing and having such a great time."
Gillan says it was producer Ezrin who provided the catalyst, pitching the idea of a new album after seeing Deep Purple play live in Canada during early 2012.
The group has released a pair of singles, "Hell to Pay" and "All the Time in the World," from the album and begins a European tour on June 2 at the Kavarna Rock Fest in Bulgaria.
Gillan says U.S. dates are unlikely for this year.
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