Metallica's Lars Ulrich has been speaking to Classic Rock magazine about the possibility of a Deep Purple Mk III reunion - and he's volunteered to take over on the drum throne.
In separate interviews with Classic Rock, singer David Coverdale, bassist/vocalist Glenn Hughes and keyboardist Jon Lord have all intimated they would be willing to reunite the mid-'70s line-up of Deep Purple. And all parties have recently been in contact with the band's mercurial lead guitarist, Ritchie Blackmore.
In fact, Classic Rock says the only block to the band reforming, surprisingly enough, could be Ian Paice. As a member of the current incarnation of Deep Purple would probably find it difficult and uncomfortable to get involved.
But there is a solution in the form of Metallica's Lars Ulrich, who would be happy to deputise on drums for a one-off event.
Ulrich: "I'll volunteer myself"
A hardcore Purple fan, Ulrich saw Purple Mk III at their first show, in Copenhagen in 1973.
"That was the famous gig where in a newspaper article the day after, Coverdale was talking about puking in the toilets backstage before the show, he was so fired up with nerves," Lars recalls. "I remember they played a lot of new songs, I was all of nine years old."
"If Deep Purple need a drummer, David Coverdale has my number" Lars Ulrich
Ulrich admits to even being a big fan of Stormbringer, Purple Mk III's second and final studio album. "I think that Soldier Of Fortune and The Gypsy stand out and have aged well compared to the rest of the record.
"I hope that one day Metallica will do a version of [Stormbringer] songs; James Hetfield could sing Soldier Of Fortune beautifully."
And as for the reunion, Ulrich adds: "I know there's talk about the fact that if they got Coverdale, Hughes, Lord and Blackmore together they would have four members who aren't in the current Deep Purple – then they just need a drummer, I'll volunteer myself for that [laughs].
"If they need a drummer, David Coverdale has my number."
The full 20-page Deep Purple special feature is in the February 2009 edition of Classic Rock, on sale in the UK 7 January.