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4.1 out of 5 stars
Straight Between the Eyes
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
on March 6, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Is there a better guitarist at placing his solos perfectly into his band's songs than the incomparable Ritchie Blackmore. He does it all over this album.
The reviews to this CD are an unfortunate mixed bag. In the context of its 1982 release it was a great album -- it stands alone and on its own merits. An Amazon reader can clearly be misled.
If you were in high school in the early 80's -- particularly 1982 you know MTV played "Stone Cold" nearly every hour. But Death Alley Driver was the better video. Where is the DVD of all those great Rainbow videos anyway??
I remember the MTV Saturday night concerts and the Rainbow weekend was a superb show. The one thing which was very true that senior year of high school was that although Van Halen blew through town in November '82 to support Diver Down -- .38 Special was touring to support the Special Forces album -- Def Leppard released the spectacular Pyromania album in Feb./March '83 and toured to support it then -- those bands had nothing on Rainbow. Stone Cold was the video of the year.
When Van Halen dumped Diamond Dave in 1985 I thought Joe Lynn Turner would have been a great fit.
Joe Lynn Turner and Ritchie Blackmore were a cut above those other frontmen. The one thing which was absolutely true about Rainbow fans was that they were more devoted to their band than fans of other bands were.
Though smaller in number -- true fans of this band had a genuine affection for Ritchie Blackmore and Roger Glover despite the sometimes musical chairs lead singers and keyboard players and drummers over the years.
Today, Ritchie has gone in a new direction with Blackmore's Night pursuing folk and medieval renaissance music --- but at a concert at the Patchogue Playhouse in November of 2000 -- Ritchie went into the archives to really rock out on some Rainbow and Deep Purple classics -- and the crowd loved it.
Listen to this record and you will be rewarded.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 23, 2005
Format: Audio CD
Straight Between The Eyes came out in 1982 and contains Rainbow's biggest hit, Stone Cold, a "power ballad" I have never gotten tired of hearing. This was Joe Lynn Turner's second album after the decent Difficult To Cure. The production is better and so are the songs. Highlights are the rockin Death Alley Driver (good chorus and solo), Tearin' Out My Heart (a ballad with great vocals), Power (upbeat rocker), Eyes Of Fire (mystical), and Stone Cold. Every Rainbow album including the last one, Stranger In Us All, has at least a few gems. If I had to choose the best three I would say Rainbow Rising, Straight Between The Eyes, and Bent Out Of Shape. I recommend Martin Popoff's latest book about Blackmore (English Castle Magic) if you can find it.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on November 9, 2002
Format: Audio CD
This album is the best Rainbow album featuring pop-metal singer Joe Lynn Turner, no doubt about that. This singer, owner of a potent and beautiful voice, unfortunately uses it mostly for singing pop metal tunes talking about love (in a kind of Steve Perry style).
Blackmore hired him with the clear intent of breaking mainstream America. The first result of this union was the catastrophic DIFFICULT TO CURE. Blackmore and Glover thought things over and decided to go back to hard rock. The result, STRAIGHT BETWEEN THE EYES, is a very efficient album, not one to make you stunned, but a really good album.
Blackmore is playing free and relaxed in it. His riffs are catchy and intelligent, albeit very simple. The nine songs are good, and there's not a feeling in any one of them of being a throwaway or filler.
Recommended for Rainbow fans.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on November 12, 2006
Format: Audio CD
A lot of Rainbow fans seem to dislike this record but I think it's awesome! I only have five Rainbow records, but this one is my favorite so far. It's just a feel good, fun, rock n roll album. It doesn't offer those long, complex, epic numbers like "Stargazer," but it is a solid album of excellent tracks including two of my all-time favorites "Stone Cold" and "Bring on the Night (Dream Chaser)." There is only one track I'm not too crazy about ("Rock Fever") but the rest are great. Joe Lynn Turner has an amazing voice and it, of course, features the guitar legend Ritchie Blackmore. The worst part about this album is, actually, the cover. Rainbow is not known for the best album covers (i.e. "Difficult to Cure"), but this one is hideous! Oh well, it's what's inside that counts and here's what's inside:

"Death Alley Driver" (4:36): Fast and furious opener. Killer guitar and keyboard solos. I really like the overall sound of this one and I think the keyboards really stand out. I guess I'm one of the few fans who like keyboards in hard rock and metal.

"Stone Cold" (5:15): From the first guitar riff, this song rules! Soft and delicate in places and catchy rocker in others. Excellent use of keyboards, too.

"Bring on the Night (Dream Chaser)" (4:02): I love this song! This one and "Stone Cold" are my favorites on this album (and also favorite songs all-time). It just flat out kicks! The sweeping sound right before the chorus is cool!

"Tite Squeeze" (3:15): This song is OK. I can listen to it. It is just an average, straight-forward rock song. Nothing sets this song apart like most of the others on this record.

"Tearin' Out My Heart" (4:00): Slow, power track.

"Power" (4:23): This track kicks! Like with "Dream Chaser", my favorite part is right before the chorus. The intensity is built with flying percussion. Double bass would've been even better.

"MISS Mistreated" (4:25): Another of the better tracks. Guitar solo a highlight as well as the bass. I also like the use of keyboards. A medium-tempo song.

"Rock Fever" (3:40): The only track here I don't care for. The chorus is just stale, good-time rock n roll. "Lemme see you rock, lemme see you roll, lemme see you burn." No originality.

"Eyes of Fire" (6:41): The closest to an epic track on this album. It has an interesting sound. I wonder if Bruce Dickinson had this song in mind when he wrote Iron Maiden's masterpiece "Powerslave." They have the same Egyptian tune.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on March 13, 2002
Format: Audio CD
This seems to be a rather polarizing album among Rainbow fans. This is due to the fact that Rainbow wrote material based upon the strength of the vocalist. For instance, the Dio-era albums are worlds apart from either the Bonnet- or Turner-era records, or even the White-led group that recorded "Stranger In Us All". There's no question that Joe Lynn Turner's voice was well-suited for the lighter fare recorded for "Straight Between The Eyes". The album itself features a very polished production by bassist Roger Glover that was well-suited for airplay in the USA, which was Blackmore's goal in having Turner front Rainbow. So, seen in that light, the choice of material is understandable. But what I think is Blackmore's greatest strength comes through strongly here - his innate ability to drop in catchy lines, whether he has 8 or 8000 bars to do it in. His solo on the big single, "Stone Cold", just fits so well. For a more intense guitar workout, the song "Death Alley Driver" recalls Blackmore's playing on Deep Purple's "Highway Star". With the exception of the uptempo "Power", most of the songs are more laidback and balladesque. Overall, it's a pretty decent album as long as you don't expect to hear Dio-era songs. And there is still only one Ritchie Blackmore.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on March 29, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Here Ritchie takes a step back from the pop precipice that he had been threatening to tumble over with "Down to Earth" and especially "Difficult to Cure" and delivers a solid hard rock album with only minimal pop flavorings.
This is easily the best album he made with Joe Lynn Turner--no real stinkers, just a few brushes with cliched metal cheese in the lyrics. Almost all of the guitar solos are frenzied and inspired. The album's highlight is the closing "Eyes of Fire" where Ritchie gamely attempts to recapture the epic feel of early Rainbow tracks like "Stargazer" and mostly succeeds.
In addition to "Eyes of Fire", "Power", "Miss Mistreated," "Stone Cold" and "Dreamchaser" are all especially strong. "Stone Cold" was even a moderate radio hit (thus encouraging Ritchie and co to rewrite it as "Street of Dreams" for the "Bent Out of Shape" album.)
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on December 14, 2005
Format: Audio CD
This album is great. Joe Lynn Turner is in very good vocal form. Ritchie Blackmore plays the guitar very well. His solo's are fantastic! Ritchie Blackmore is the best guitarist of the world when it comes up to solo's! The rest of the band is doing a very good job too. So, every musician plays his instrument well, now the songs. The songs are good. Death Ally Driver is a very good rockin' opener of the album. The guitarsolo here is one of the best and the riff...just fantastic! Stone Cold was a very popular hit that time, and it's a very good song. The rest of the songs are all good, nothing special to say about it. My favorite track of this album is: Death Ally Driver. Power, Bring On the Night and Stone Cold come close, but Death Ally Driver defeats them. It's a pitty that rainbow didn't go on longer then 1983. Their last album came out in 1983(Bent Out Of Shape). That was also a very good album. Ritchie Blackmore should have went on with Rainbow instead of joining Deep Purple again. Joe Lynn Turner is a much better singer then Ian Gillan! In my view Rainbow is much better then Deep Purple, so I think Ritchie Blackmore should have went on with rainbow. But that's how things go in life. About this album again, it's a great album. If you like rock, then this is something for you. I hope this review was helpful for you...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on February 9, 2001
Format: Audio CD
This is one of the best RAINBOW all time albuns, even featuring "cheesy -totally pop-oriented" singer Joe Lynn Turner. Roger GLover is playing his bass with a long time forgotten passion, Blackmore solos are great, showing his mastership without being indulgent. Booby Rondinelli drums are also perfetc, tight and cohesive. The keyboards, of course, are only figurants here. The best songs are by far "Death Alley Driver", "Stone Cold", "BRing on the Night", "Power" and "Eyes of FIre". The rest is cool, adn some of them really lead us to the great times of Deep Purple. THis CD is much, much better than the lousy "DIFFICULT TO CURE", an outrageous attempt to go radio-friendly, led by Joe Lynn Turner ( how Blackmore accepted it, I still don't know ).
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on September 25, 2003
Format: Audio CD
The reviews on this album don't give it justice. I like everything about this album. My favorite things are
1. A great album cover first of all, a guitar going through a guys head.....how cool is that?
2. Great vocals by Joe Lynn Turner, i like this album more than "Bent out of Shape", probably because that was thier last album!
3. Blackmore with that great guitar sound, especially on "Death Alley Driver"
4. The organ on "Stone Cold" still sends shiver ups my spine, especially the opening
5. Commercial hits "Stone Cold" and "Power",as well as one of my favorites "Tite Squeeze"
Overall, a great piece of work I own all of the Rainbow albums on vinyl and i put this one on at least twice a week
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 13, 2010
Format: Audio CD
This was the album where Ritchie Blackmore started to get the formula right for creating AOR albums.

1. Death Alley Driver-11/10
2. Stone Cold-7/10
3. Bring On The Night (Dream Chaser)-7/10
4. Tite Squeeze-7/10
5. Tearin Out My Heart-7/10
6. Power-8/10
7. Miss Mistreated-8/10
8. Rock Fever-7.5/10
9. Eyes Of Fire-7/10
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