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  • This is a relatively strong live effort from Ritchie Blackmore and company. The 80’s saw Rainbow attempting to cross over a little and garner a more wider array of fans. They may have succeeded. Blackmore found that singer Joe lynn Turner had not only the vocal appeal for the 80’s pop rock scene, but also the required poofed hair as well. Consequently, many individuals who had never heard of Rainbow before, swore they were listening to a Foreigner album when introduced to Rainbow’s 80’s efforts. Having said that, there still is a lot of good old fashioned Rainbow traits here. But the instrumental on track eight “Difficult To Cure” is perhaps the best song on this disc. “Difficult” is nothing more than Rainbow showing their true talent with the ability to merge melodic metal with a symphony orchestra (Japanese, probably Tokyo). Johann Sebastian Bach’s “Song of Joy” is delicately fused and blended well here. Blackmore starts off with a typical solo, then the orchestra kicks in….what a sound! A truly magnificent performance! There is a quick version of “Since You Been Gone”, with Graham Bonnet on vocals,(Castle Donnington Rock Festival-England, one of the few times Rainbow played outdoors and actually headlined to boot) and a few recordings of Ronnie James Dio singing also. Dio attempts to rouse a rather anemic Atlanta audience on a couple of cuts. The CD opens with the typical 80’s flair. “Spotlight Kid”, “I Surrender”, and “Can’t Happen Here are okay, but Turner almost ruins “Power”, though he somewhat redeems himself with a strong performance on “Stone Cold.” The CD ends with another instrumental “Weiss Heim”. No vocals on this one, with Ritchie and Keyboardist Don Airey shining brightly on this particular cut. This is a pretty darn good recording of Rainbow performing live over the years, with shows recorded literally from around the world. Once again Ritchie Blackmore’s love of classical music is portrayed in some of his songs. But Rainbow’s trademark has always been their ability to shamelessly introduce classical music to metal, and this is no exception.

    Posted on November 22, 2009