The Early Years contain a combination of 14 remixes and unreleased tracks from Deep Purple's earliest lineup: Rod Evans on vocals, bassist Nick Simper, guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, drummer Ian Paice, and keyboardist Jon Lord. Originally recorded in the late '60s, these songs initially showed up on the band's first three albums: Shades of Deep Purple, Deep Purple, and Book of Taliesyn. Now fans can hear alternate versions of favorites including "Kentucky Woman," "Hush," "I'm So Glad," and "Wring That Neck." This isn't the heavy metal band of Machine Head that would become known for Blackmore's classic guitar riffs and second vocalist Ian Gillan's thunderous metal shrieking. The Early Years captures a pop-oriented band transforming into the gods of metal they were about to become with 1970's Deep Purple in Rock.
AllMusic Review by Al Campbell