Customer Reviews: Very Best Of Rainbow
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on May 21, 2001
This remastered set contains an anthology of Ritchie Blackmore's work with his group Rainbow. He formed the group after tiring of the ego clashes in Deep Purple. The group had no stable line-up yet produced some great music during the seventies and eighties. The groups became progressively more commercial as more albums were released. The band had three different vocalists Ronnie James Dio (later of Black Sabbath and Dio), Graham Bonnett (later of MSG), and Joe Lynn Turner (later in Deep Purple). Other members of note have included the now deceased drummer Cozy Powell, Deep Purple mate Roger Glover on bass, and keyboardist Tony Carey among many others. The group's most well known songs (all here) are a cover of Russ Ballard's "Since You Been Gone", "Stone Cold", and "Street Of Dreams". There are no rarities on this set but other cuts such as "Jealous Lover", "Can't Happen Here", "Man On The Silver Mountain", and "Kill The King" are just as memorable as their hits. I wish the set were two discs and included such tracks as the single "LA Connection", "Sixteenth Century Greensleeves" and the concert favorites like "Spotlight Kid" and "Difficult To Cure". Blackmore's guitar playing shines throughout and I lament the fact that the band broke up. Listening to this set reminds me of my junior high and high school days. If you are a fan of Deep Purple, great guitar playing or more melodic hard rock then this set is a must. If you are still curious you might want to pick up a copy of the remastered 2 cd "Finyl Vinyl" which contains live versions of some of the tracks on this set and others plus some great studio non-lp b-sides like "Bad Girl" and Weiss Heim".
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on December 1, 1998
Started as a side project, then the reason to leave Deep Purple, Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow went through several incarnations from 1975 to 1983 (and was resurrected briefly again a couple of years ago with all new players and Blackmore). The first four albums introduced the world to an unknown little singer named Ronnie Dio, who would go on to replace Ozzy Osbourne in Black Sabbath and eventually do well fronting his own metal band. After Dio left Rainbow, he was replaced by Graham Bonnet for one album, who was replaced by Joe Lynn Turner for several. Rainbow is best known for its bookends -- Man on the Silver Mountain (1975) and Street of Dreams (1983)are the two best-known songs here, but the 14 songs in-between are all excellent rock music. Here was the mainstream introduction of classicism and medieval (musical and lyrical) themes in rock and roll. Here was Hendrix encountering Beethoven on a misty mountainside. From the crunch of the early stuff to the power balladry towards the end, always underpinned by top-notch session players, Blackmore guided Rainbow through an evolution that is very well-represented here. A must for Purple fans, guitar fans, Dio fans, and fans of good old rock and roll with a slightly improved IQ. Fans will be wistful for several missing selections -- but fans will have the albums and casual listeners will be well-served by the singles collected here, including the classic 80s b-side and AOR staple "Jealous Lover."
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on July 5, 2003
This cd is a must have for Deep Purple fans; if you love hard rock/heavy metal, then check it out as well, too. Rainbow is often criticized as a Deep Purple-lite band. Not true. Ritchie Blackmore pursued a different sound with this band, and while his guitar is unmistakable, the songs explore themes from medieval/magic to love and romance. Gillan (of Deep Purple) often sang of different themes.
I don't have a complaint with any of the songs; they're all appealing, and the early songs are quite different from the 80's era music. All three vocalists delivered. I am of the (perhaps unpopular) opinion that Joe Lynn Turner's vocals are better than Ronnie James Dio's. If you're not a big fan of the gothic sound, certainly don't let that deter you from this album. The introduction of Graham Bonnet (on song 8, here) brought an end to that era. Similarly, if the gothic sound is what you crave, there are seven wonderful songs to satisfy that urge. I've heard people argue that Turner brought too much of a mainstream appeal to the band. This may be true, but the songs are no less appealing. "Stone Cold" conveys musically all of the emotion it delivers lyrically. So to, "Street of Dreams" is a dramatic anthem of break-up songs.
This album is well worth a listen-to. There is something to please all on it, and Ritchie Blackmore's guitar work is not to be missed.
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on August 2, 2003
I'll never forget the day that I bought this CD at Shopko and it was the day just before my senior graduation and I had a lot of fun times listening to this album, I originally bought this album for 'Man on the Silver Mountain' but when I listened to the rest of the songs, I was amazed.
The songs from Rainbow's debut album are the aforementioned 'Man on the Silver Mountain' and a beautiful ballad 'Catch the Rainbow', both of those songs are classics and the former should've been another classic like Deep Purple's 'Smoke on the Water', 'Woman From Tokyo' and 'Highway Star'.
The songs from their second album Rainbow Rising are 'Starstruck' and 'Stargazer' which clocks in at over 8 minutes, that song is one hell of a song and it could've easily been a Deep Purple classic.
The songs from Long Live Rock 'N' Roll and it would also be Ronnie James Dio's final album with Rainbow ( before he would replace the immortal Ozzy Osbourne in Black Sabbath) and the songs for this album are the title track, 'Kill The King' and 'Gates of Babylon' I also felt that 'LA Connection' should've been included for this album.
Next up is Down to Earth which is the first and only album to feature Graham Bonnet on vocals and he would later join MSG and Alcatrazz, the whole album isn't that great but it contains two very good songs, the radio staple 'Since You Been Gone' and 'All Night Long' (not to be confused with Joe Walsh's version).
The songs for Rainbow's fifth studio album called Difficult to Cure are 'I Surrender' (Rainbow's biggest hit in England) and 'Can't Happen Here', this album would be Joe Lynn Turner's first album with Rainbow.
Then we get to the B-side of 'Can't Happen Here' called 'Jealous Lover' which still gets some rock airplay but it's not one of my favorite songs by Rainbow.
Next up is Rainbow's sixth studio album called 'Straight Between the Eyes' and it features 'Stone Cold' (which was Rainbow's only Top 40 hit in America) and 'Power'. (I would've put 'Death Alley Driver' on here instead of this song no offense.
Then we get to Rainbow's final studio album called Bent Out of Shape and it has 'Street of Dreams' and 'Can't Let You Go' and they're both one of the better songs with Joe Lynn Turner on vocals.
This album is recommended if you like classic rock, or if you're a Deep Purple fan, but if you like Dio, I would still check this album out.
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on September 12, 1999
If your really a Blackmore or Rainbow fan, you already own all of the classic albums and there is no reason to pick up "Very Best Of." Aside from the interesting family tree, this collection adds nothing to the previous output. It is kinda fun to hear the progression of the music over 9 years rolled up into 77 minutes, though. But it also makes you realize how fluffy the material had become in the Turner era. (Why did DP ever have him on for Slaves and Masters?) Two classic cuts from that era: Jealous Lover and Street of Dreams. Classic cuts from the Dio-era: too many to mention.
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on December 13, 2001
From the opening track to the close, this single CD does what not many other 'best of' types do - it *really* delivers. Being a Rainbow fan from Day 1 (I mean, how many could not resist the Man on the Silver Mountain?), I was pleased with this collection. Mind you, all my Rainbow is on vinyl, however I did not find myself wanting this cut or that one that 'they' forgot...And if you are a major fan of Rainbow, you would get all the CD's anyway, right?
This fan of most all metal bands loved this collection, from the 'black magic' sound when Dio was in, right up to their later commercial days - which produced what I believe is some of the 'best of breed' stuff for the time (Since you've been gone, Jealous Lover, Stone Cold, Street of Dreams, etc).
This underrated and under-exposed band of the late 70's/early 80's deserves the attention of any metal/hard rock fan. No, they are not some Deep Purple clone - Ritchie had his thing and sound to share with the world, and despite the rotating door of musicians that he worked with, the music and vision was strong on all of Rainbow's work. Hail to one of the greatest guitarists of the decade and this significant part of his career that got him there!!
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on December 26, 2013
This review is very late in coming for me. I heard Ritchie Blackmore in the 1970's and brushed him off in favor of the music played/pushed by the radio. How dumb could I have been. His music just gets better with age like a good wine. If you like heavy metal with some blues sound you will live all of the Rainbow albums. I personally like the very mellow songs like Catch the Rainbow and Rainbow Eyes. Some of the other songs like Man on Silver Mountain are absolutely great.
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on October 31, 2002
From the vaults of Polydor Records comes a killer 16 song retro The Very Best Of Rainbow on Polydor-Chronicles. On this
16 song anthology you will find out exactly what made on & off Deep Purple star guitarist Ritchie Blackmore and his band
Rainbow one of the leaders in the Hard Rock field from '75 & '82. This CD covers the best of their 8 Polydor albums issued
between '75 & '82 and I honestly feel no fan of this band or Blackmore will be disappointed. Through out Rainbows golden
years for Polydor, vocalist Ronnie James Dio, Deep Purple bassist Roger Glover & ace drummer Cozy Powell (for more on
Cozy's drum work checkout The Best Of Cozy Powell on Poydor-Chronicles) all shared ranks in the Rainbow army at one
time or another. Amongst the golden 'rainbows' you will find on this CD are "Stargazer," "Long Live Rock 'N' Roll," "Man On
The Silver Mountain," "I Surrender" & "Jealous Lover ( originally issued as the '81 b-side of "Can't Happen Here"). All the
material has digitally overhauled and the booklet opens up to a very cool foldout poster! Get this CD and ride the Rainbow
once again!
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on August 20, 2015
Reduced on many a Classic Rock station to "Stone Cold", there's quite a lot hear worth hearing. The more interesting material is the half with Ronnie James Dio as lead singer, before "Stone Cold". But they survived his exodus to Black Sabbath. A gotta-have-it for any Ritchie Blackmore fan, and who isn't? Favorite track: "Jealous Lover".
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on August 11, 2013
From Ronnie James Dio to Joe Lynn Turner on vocals and all of the line-up changes in between...this set of songs is Great for the casual Rainbow fan to get started with! Ritchie Blackmore's band soars with each track!
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