RAINBOW — The Very Best of Rainbow

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RAINBOW - The Very Best of Rainbow cover
4.06 | 5 ratings | 1 review
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Boxset / Compilation · 1997

Filed under Hard Rock


1. Man on the Silver Mountain (4:40)
2. Catch the Rainbow (6:40)
3. Starstruck (4:08)
4. Stargazer (8:27)
5. Kill the King (4:31)
6. Long Live Rock 'n' Roll (4:25)
7. Gates of Babylon (6:50)
8. Since You Been Gone (3:18)
9. All Night Long (3:51)
10. I Surrender (4:03)
11. Can't Happen Here (4:59)
12. Jealous Lover (3:14)
13. Stone Cold (5:19)
14. Power (4:29)
15. Can't Let You Go (4:22)
16. Street of Dreams (4:25)

Total Time: 77:50


- Ritchie Blackmore / guitar, bass
- Ronnie James Dio / vocals (tracks 1-7)
- Graham Bonnet / vocals (tracks 8 & 9)
- Joe Lynn Turner / vocals (tracks 10-16)
- Mickey Lee Soule / piano, Mellotron, clavinet, organ (tracks 1 & 2)
- Tony Carey / keyboards (tracks 3-4)
- David Stone / keyboards (tracks 5-7)
- Don Airey / keyboards (tracks 8-12)
- David Rosenthal / keyboards (tracks 13-16)
- Craig Gruber / bass (tracks 1 & 2)
- Jimmy Bain / bass (tracks 3 & 4)
- Bob Daisley / bass (tracks 5-7)
- Roger Glover / bass (tracks 8-16)
- Gary Driscoll / drums (tracks 1 & 2)
- Cozy Powell / drums (tracks 3-9)
- Bob Rondinelli / drums (tracks 10-14)
- Chuck Burgi / drums (tracks 15-16)

About this release

Compilation, Polydor, 1997.

Thanks to Pekka, 666sharon666 for the updates


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

This review is an experiment of sorts. I can see three good reasons for releasing compilations of the Greatest Hits nature - 1. heaps of cash quick, 2. all the hits in a neat little package for those who don't care about albums and 3. introducing an artist's work to new people - and since the third point very much applies to me and The Very Best of Rainbow, I thought of trying to offer a view of the new listener. This review is written (slightly drunk but that's beside the point, though it may have some effects in addition to the obvious typos) during my second ever listen of The Very Best of Rainbow. Before getting this album for free from a friend of a friend I'd never knowingly heard any original Rainbow songs, just cover versions like Dream Theater's Stargazer, Tarot's Kill the King and a very bad out of tune version of I Surrender that Timo Kotipelto of Stratovarius fame performed on a crappy Finnish talk show years ago.

The first thing that struck me on my first listen a while ago and now again is the absolutely fantastic verses of the opening track Man on the Silver Mountain. I'm not a studied musician so I can't pinpoint quite what it is, but something in the harmonics or the melody feels very unique. Or then it's just a damn good ordinary melody, anyway I'm sold right away. Despite the slightly disappointing chorus after the greatness of the verses it's a really really good song. Some other songs, particularly Stargazer, have that quality of uniqueness that seems to make Rainbow different and special. There's some eastern feel in the melodies that I just love. If it's not there it doesn't seem to matter very much as all the Dio era tracks are really good pieces of heavy metal anyway with some pretty impressive guitar soloing and singing.

The vocalist changes then and so does the style as the two tracks from Down to Earth are considerably poppier than the Dio material, but quite enjoyable in their own right. Great sections in both of the songs but other more plain bits keep them from being really great as a whole. But in the context of a compilation it's important so see this side of the band as well. Somehow I've always thought that David Coverdale handled the singing duties in Rainbow for a long time, but following Graham Bonnet we have Joe Lynn Turner taking the mic with I Surrender. This original certainly beats the Kotipelto and the house band version I happened to hear and the same unique Rainbow quality is again present in the melodies. Love it. Stone Cold is another brilliant number with one of the best choruses of the compilation, just like the closing track of my edition, Street of Dreams. Both are somewhat calm numbers from their later albums that prove Rainbow's ability to craft memorable songs throughout their initial run.

Most of the material on this compilation is immensely enjoyable and hearing it has certainly aroused my interest in the band. I'm eagerly awaiting for reviews from fellow members on their studio albums and so far it seems that Rainbow Rising could be a good purchase to make next.

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