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Album Review

Ritchie Blackmore decided to pull the plug on Rainbow following the supporting tour for 1983's Bent Out of Shape. To commemorate the end of the band, he released the appropriately-titled, Finyl Vinyl. A double-record set of live recordings and a handful of studio outtakes, primarily culled from the Joe Lynn Turner era but also featuring selections with Ronnie James Dio and Graham Bonnet, Finyl Vinyl offers a haphazard alternate history designed for hardcore fans (by 1986, that's pretty much all Blackmore had left). For those fans, the album is actually quite a treat. Rainbow always sounded better on stage than they did on the studio — rawer, harder, alive — and songs that sounded half-baked in the studio, such as selections from Difficult to Cure, sound right here. That's not to say that it's a perfect album — the outtakes are interesting, but not particularly remarkable, the sequencing doesn't make sense and Blackmore's classical pretentions become even harder to stomach when married with a full-fledged orchestra — but it rocks harder and more convincingly than many latter-day Rainbow releases. That doesn't mean that it's preferable to the studio albums, but for the devoted, it's a welcome addition to the band's canon and it's a nice way to close a career.

Biography

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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