On This Day (November 21)…Going Bananas in Helsinki

Deep Purple performed on this day in 2003 at the Helsinki Ice Hall in Helsinki, Finland.

Poster promoting the concert. Retrieved from here.

This concert occurred as part of Deep Purple’s Bananas World Tour, undertaken to support the album of the same name. They were supported by Uriah Heep. The setlist consisted of both old songs and several songs from their latest album Bananas, including the title track.

According to a review from the time, the venue was completely sold out. As this venue reportedly seats around 8000 people, this is no small feat! This enthusiasm makes sense, as Purple enjoys a good deal of popularity in Finland even though they were not at the height of their popularity worldwide in 2003. Even Bananas, which is widely considered one of the band’s weaker albums, did quite well in Finland’s charts when it was released, peaking at number 6. Opinion was divided on how well Uriah Heep did, but the consensus was that Purple easily outdid them.

Reviewers noted things such as the good sound in the venue, Steve Morse’s excellent guitar sound and the positive effect it had on the old songs, Don Airey’s use of “Finlandia” during his solo spot, and the great show they put on overall.

On the same day, Steve Morse did a guitar clinic in Helsinki. Like the concert later did, this event filled an auditorium.

No recording of this concert is known to exist.

This concert occurred just over ten years to the day that Purple performed performed at this venue, Helsinki Ice Hall or Jäähalli, for the final concert they ever played with their Mark II lineup. I talk more about that concert and the venue here.

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  • Edit on 2020-09-03: Added information. Updated formatting. Optimized for new site.

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