RAINBOW — Rising (review)

RAINBOW — Rising album cover Album · 1976 · Heavy Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4.5/5 ·
Sean Trane
It did not take long for Blackmore to start building his dream group by keeping the awesome-voiced Dio and by firing the rest of the old Elf group (which certainly deserved a better treatment from Blackmood), and bringing in one of the best hard rock drummer in the business, the mercenary Cozy Powell. Powell's sound and powerful, inventive and dramatic playing will be the main ingredient that was to build Rainbow's legend. With those three "beasts" in the band , it was difficult for the other two to find their spaces, with Bain just being apt and Tony Carey as a supporting KB to the group (his soloing in concert was simply very poor, and he would get fired soon, albeit Tony learned from his mistakes as he is still around nowadays), but this album is one of the bests in its category and graced with one of the most phantasmagoric artwork ever.

This second album is one of the most emblematic of 70's hared rock/heavy Metal from the 7O's and certainly one of my fave, even if it was quite short. From the start of the synth intro of the outstanding Tarot Woman to the enthralling Run With The Wolf and implacable Starstruck, the first side is simply flawless until the last track, which appears to be a throwaway track: the awful but thankfully short Do You Close Your Eyes. This is rather un-understandably the most often plated track live, often used as an encore where Blackmore destroyed his guitar. Anyway, the trio of opening track is one of the best trilogies of the genre and all three could've made major airplay (with Tarot Woman without the intro).

The second side is made of two long tracks, the first of which Stargazer is Rainbow's major achievement and the apex in dramatic singing. Dio's voice rises and soars (like he was capable until his stint with Sabbath later on) while Blackmore descending riff and Powell's power drumming are over-powering. There is a slight Arabic feeling pervading throughout the track and this adds to the grandeur of it. The second track pales a bit in comparison, but A Light In The Black does conclude capably a very excellent album even it is a bit repetitive especially given its length. Had Kill The King been added to the album track list (and thus shortening ALITB), this album would've been a perfect affair.

Surely one of the most endearing album of the 70's, I don't know any proghead that does not like this opus, and I must say that Rainbow's apex came unfortunately too soon, as I wish they'd duplicated the formula on this album.
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