Rainbow – “Boston 1981” (Cleopatra Records)
As legendary Ritchie Blackmore sets on what is expected to be his swansong tour this summer, out comes yet another live concert from the mists of time! Originally recorded for the King Biscuit Flower Hour in 1981, this Boston gig features Joe Lynn Turner and Bobby Rondinelli, replacements for Graham Bonnet and Cozy Powell respectively, as Blackmore continued his quest to forge a radio friendly pop rock band. As such this 10 track live album shows the interesting transition right from his days in Deep Purple with ‘Smoke On The Water’ to the post purple but still 70s hard rock of ‘Man On A Silver Mountain’, to the more commercial ‘Long Live Rock N Roll’ and ultimately the full emotion of ‘I Surrender’, where Joe Lynn Turner shows his measure in this passionate performance. Throughout it all of course, is Blackmore’s stupendous guitar work, adding dazzling subtleties here n there, or accelerating into a spell bounding virtuoso run or mesmerizing by extending an already protracted solo – little wonder why his 2015 shows are sold out as long time fans flock to see the living legend once last time. With an aptly packaged double gatefold LP offered in 3 colored vinyl options and a stitched in 20 page booklet, this incredible live performance once again proves why Ritchie Blackmore will remain the be all and end all rock guitarist in the hearts of many folk.