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Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow: Black Masquerade (DVD)

Recorded in Dusseldorf 1995 for the German Rockpalast TV show, Black Masquerade is an exciting video document of the final incarnation of Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow, who shortly went off into the merry world of Renaissance folk and minstrels with his wife Candice in Blackmore's Night. This concert features the line-up of Blackmore (guitar), Doogie White (vocals), Chuck Burgi (drums), Greg Smith (bass), Paul Morris (keyboards), and Candice Night (backing vocals). While most fans have felt over the years that this line-up was far inferior to the glory years of Rainbow (fronted either by Ronnie James Dio, Graham Bonnet, or Joe Lynn Turner), they show here on this performance that they indeed could deliver all these classic songs, and the new material, in fine fashion.

The video & audio quality of the DVD is quite good, Eagle Rock doing a nice job with the overall presentation. The band really cooks throughout, with Blackmore delivering non-stop hard rock guitar pyrotechnics for what we all know now as really the last time before he ventured into folkier, medieval styled avenues. A few old Rainbow classics are here, including a heavy "Spotlight Kid", the rousing, crowd pleasing "Long Live Rock 'n' Roll", "Still I'm Sad", "Man on a Silver Mountain", "Temple of the King" and an all too brief "Since You've Been Gone", but it really seemed like the band wanted to push the new Stranger in Us All album, so there is a healthy dose of that album, with highlights being the stirring "Ariel" (a classic Rainbow track if ever there was one) and the hard rocking "Too Late For Tears". White really was a good choice to sing for Rainbow, and while he might not possess the superhuman vocal chops of Dio or the smooth croons of Turner, he really does a fine job here. The rest of the band is more than solid, with Morris given plenty of room to show his talents, the always dependable Burgi rock solid, and Smith even throwing in some very good backing vocals. Candice only joins them on stage for a few songs, so you really don't get a full glimpse of her lovely vocals like the world would in a very short time after this tour. From the Deep Purple catalog the band dusts out a smokin' version of "Perfect Strangers", a short teaser of "Black Night", the classic "Burn", and of course "Smoke On the Water". I guess the main disappointment for some might be the fact that there's a shortage of some essential Rainbow here, like "Kill the King", "Catch the Rainbow", "Stone Cold", "I Surrender", "Jealous Lover", "Death Valley Driver", or anything off of Rising for that matter, but despite all that, this is still a very cool video and a must own for any fan.

Track Listing
1) Introduction
2) Spotlight Kid
3) Too Late For Tears
4) Long Live Rock 'n' Roll/Black Night
5) Hunting Humans
6) Wold To the Moon/Difficult to Cure
7) Keyboard solo
8) Still I'm Sad
9) Man on a Silver Mountain
10) Temple of the King
11) Black Masquerade
12) Ariel
13) Since You've Been Gone
14) Perfect Strangers
15) Greensleeves
16) Hall of the Mountain King
17) Burn
18) Smoke on the Water

Added: September 14th 2013
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Eagle Rock Entertainment
Hits: 2084
Language: english

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