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Difficult to Cure

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Album Review

Rainbow ditched vocalist Graham Bonnet after Down to Earth, hiring former Fandango singer Joe Lynn Turner as their frontman. As it turns out, Turner is less hyperbolic than his predecessor, which fits the focused polish of Difficult to Cure. Where Down to Earth was a streamlined version of early Rainbow, Difficult to Cure is a shot at crossover. It's all given a contemporary sheen, with plenty of studio gloss that now instantly evokes the early '80s. On that level, it's somewhat of an entertaining artifact — anyone pining for an example of what album-oriented radio sounded like in the pre-MTV years should check this out — but it's not more than that, since the bids at chart success are only occasionally memorable ("I Surrender," "Magic"). Each side ends with a pseudo-classical instrumental that functions as a guitar showcase. Ritchie Blackmore's playing is impeccable despite the awkwardness of both numbers.

Customer Reviews

A classic. Rock excellence

I bought this album in my youth, and in 27 years it's the same price on a better format. This is a rocking album and at least as good as the one before it, with G.B. on lead vocals. A must-buy for anyone who's into rock/metal.

They almost lost the patient...

The best Rainbow albums were (for me) the Dio-era ones but both 'Down to Earth' and 'Difficult to Cure' have their moments. Of course, these moments are all Ritchie Blackmore's and his playing on all of this album's songs is superb - whether you like the songs or not. It's pretty obvious that the band was trying to reach a wider audience - but there's nothing inherently wrong with that, is there? Nevertheless, some of the material is too commerical even for a Ritchie Blackmore fan like me but you don't have to buy all the songs...I didn't! I don't know what the official itunes review meant by the 'awkwardness' of the two instrumentals, as I think they showcase Ritchie's exquisite technique perfectly, as well as displaying the depth of emotion in his playing. The slide work on 'Veillecht das nachster zeit' is spine-chilling and the song's arrangement is beautiful. In fact, it was this song that made me go out and buy my first guitar - thank you Ritchie for that. The second, longer instrumental, Difficult to Cure, is a heavy rock pastiche of Beethoven's ninth symphony that would have made the German composer proud - even if the tribute was somewhat tongue-in-cheek. For me, the standout tracks have to be 'Spotlight Kid', with its rapid fire riff an instant Blackmore classic; 'Can't happen here' - likewise; and both of the aforementioned instrumentals. I surrender was the hit and it is a pretty good melodic rock standard-bearer and it deserves a place on your ipod.

Rainbow just tipping into naff?

So a huge hit single but the album highlighted the erosion of rock credibility that this album represented. The fact that it is listed under "pop" says it all. The beginning of the end.


Formed: 1974 in England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s

The brainchild of former Deep Purple guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, Rainbow quickly developed into one of the '70s most successful heavy metal bands behind charismatic front man Ronnie James Dio. Together, the duo would produce a string of acclaimed albums which are still considered classics of the genre. But the group would change their musical approach numerous times following the singer's departure, eventually confusing and alienating much of their audience. Releasing eight albums during it's decade...
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