"Fireball" is the fifth album by English Rock band Deep Purple, released in 1971 and the second with the classic Mk. 2 line-up. It was recorded at various times between September 1970 and June 1971. It became the first of the band's two UK No. 1 albums, though it did not stay on the charts as long as its predecessor, "Deep Purple in Rock".
The original UK version had "Demon's Eye" as its third track, but did not include "Strange Kind of Woman", which was instead released as a single there. It was vice versa on the North American and Japanese releases. The boogie-inspired "Strange Kind of Woman" single reached No. 8 in the UK. "Fireball", the album's title track, was also released as a single and reached No. 15 in the UK.
"Strange Kind of Woman" has been a staple of the live set up to the present day, and "Fireball" also made a few live appearances, mainly as an encore. "Strange Kind of Woman" and "The Mule" appear on the 1972 live album "Made in Japan", with the latter morphing into an Ian Paice drum solo.
The original vinyl release was in a gatefold sleeve, with a generic Harvest LP-bag and a lyric-insert.
Members' views on the album
Most of the band does not consider the album a classic, although it is one of Ian Gillan's favourites. He stated in a 1974 interview: "The reason I liked that so much was because I thought, from a writing point of view, it was really the beginning of tremendous possibilities of expression. And some of the tracks on that album are really, really inventive." However, Gillan also said that the inclusion of "Anyone's Daughter" on the album was "A good bit of fun, but a mistake."
Ritchie Blackmore, in particular, stated publicly that he was not overly pleased with Fireball. He said of the production: "That was a bit of a disaster, because it was thrown together in the studio. Management pressure, we had no time. 'You gotta play here, here, there, then you've got to make an LP.' I told them, 'you want an LP, you've got to give us time.' But they didn't. I just threw ideas to the group that I thought up on the spur of the moment."
Jon Lord stated that Fireball "wanders slightly" and "goes to places that the band wasn't expecting it to go to." Lord did praise several songs on the album, including "No No No" and "Fools", and particularly singled out Ian Paice's superb drumming on the title track.
All songs written by Ritchie Blackmore, Ian Gillan, Roger Glover, Jon Lord and Ian Paice.
Original European release
- Side one
||"No No No"
- Side two
||"No One Came"
- Deep Purple
- Ian Gillan – lead vocals
- Ritchie Blackmore – rhythm and lead guitars
- Jon Lord – keyboards, Hammond organ
- Roger Glover – bass guitar
- Ian Paice – drums
- Recorded between September 1970 and June 1971 at De Lane Lea Studios, Olympic Studios, and The Hermitage
- Engineered by Martin Birch, Lou Austin and Alan O'Duffy
- Peter Mew – Original album remastering
- Tom Bender – Engineering work on the bonus tracks
Deep Purple - Fireball
UK Harvest SHVL 793 stereo (1971).
Album produced by Deep Purple.
The vinyl record attains a strong excellent grading, suggesting few plays.
Audio quality is very clear and strong throughout.
Both record centre labels are clean and unmarked.
Both record centre labels are free from tears, stains or stickers.
The albums original textured gatefold cover is in excellent condition, displaying only minor signs of wear.
The original inner sleeve is in excellent condition, displaying some minor age discolouring.
The album cover has a strong hing and spine, displaying clear, purple printed script.
The original purple printed card insert is excellently presented.