Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow - Black Masquerade

This show was filmed in Germany in 1995 during the tour to support Stranger in Us All, the one Rainbow album to feature Doogie White as vocalist. White is sort of a place-holder singer; competent enough but not really anything unique, White has been called on to hold down the fort for many a band until said band can find the voice they're really looking for. Put in a nutshell, White is not too exciting.

Almost half the material here comes from Stranger in Us All so you have a lot of non-descript rocking with tunes like "Too Late for Tears," "Hunting Humans" and "Still I'm Sad," songs that were for the most part unfamiliar to fans at the time and that have basically been forgotten now.

As to the hits performed, White does an admirable job with "Since You've Been Gone," a tune particularly suited to his voice, but who could expect him or anyone else to hold a candle to Ronnie James Dio when it's time for "Man on the Silver Mountain."

White also sounds good on "Perfect Strangers" but what should have been a big finish with the Deep Purple oldies "Burn" and "Smoke on the Water" turns out to be pretty much of a dud too.

All of the negatives here could have been redeemed if guitarist Ritchie Blackmore had of turned up the fireworks a little but the famed ax man seems disinterested and it wouldn't be long after the tour that he would disband Rainbow and begin working with his wife Candice Night as Blackmore's Night. For Rainbow completists only.

2 stars

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