On this day in music history: March 31, 1972 - “Machine Head”, the sixth album by Deep Purple is released. Produced by Deep Purple, it is recorded at the Grand Hotel in Montreux, Switzerland w/ The Rolling Stones Mobile Studio from December 6 - 21, 1971. The band had initially intended to record at the Montreux Casino normally closed for the winter season. However, a fire on December 4, 1971 burns the building to the ground, becoming the inspiration for the classic “Smoke On The Water” (#4 Pop). The track “Highway Star” also becomes a rock radio staple. In time, the album is regarded as a landmark and influential release in the heavy metal music genre. For its fortieth anniversary in 2012, it is reissued as a five disc box set featuring a remastered version of the original album, a remixed version (originally released in 1997), the quadraphonic stereo LP mix, a remastered version of the “Deep Purple In Concert” album (recorded in 1970-72, but released in the UK in December of 1980 and in the US in June of 1982), and the fifth disc being a DVD of the live concert album. “Machine Head” hits number one on the UK album chart, number seven on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified 2x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.
“Smoke on the Water” by David Gilmour, et al. (Deep Purple cover)
We all came out to Montreux On the Lake Geneva shoreline To make records with a mobile We didn’t have much time Frank Zappa and the Mothers Were at the best place around But some stupid with a flare gun Burned the place to the ground
A really cool thing happened in the late 80′s - David Gilmour, Brian May, Tony Iommi, Ian Gillan, and Bruce Dickinson (and others) got together to record a few versions of THE Deep Purple song to benefit victims of the earthquake in Armenia.