Child In Time (Tarantura TCDRAINBOW-31)
Sports Palace, Barcelona, Spain – November 30, 1982
Disc 1 (43:05) Pomp And Circumstance, Over The Rainbow, Start, Spotlight Kid, Miss Mistreated, I Surrender, Blues, Can’t Happen Here, Tearin’ Out My Heart, Guitar Solo, Tearin’ Out My Heart, Lazy, All Night Long
Disc 2 (42:38) Child In Time (Keyboard Solo), Stone Cold, Woman From Tokyo / Guitar Solo, Power, Difficult To Cure, Bass Solo (include.Black Night), Keyboard Solo, Difficult To Cure, Guitar And Drum Jam, Drum Solo, Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll
I have been waiting for some time for Tarantura to take a stab at a concert past 1981 and was hoping that Mr Peach recorded them in subsequent years. When I saw this new title I was both intrigued and a bit disappointed, intrigued by the date, 1982 and clearly into the Straight Between The Eyes era but a bit bummed out as it was not a Peach source. In fact it has been some time since we have had a Peach Rainbow recording and one could surmise that the well has gone dry. That did not deter me from placing my order and I did anxiously await the title. The bulk of the tour to support Straight Between The Eyes was focused in America, Blackmore had great confidence in the direction of the band and their focus on AOR radio, in fact it was the song Stone Cold that I first heard on the radio all those years back.
The recording featured on this new release by Tarantura is from an audience source, it is incomplete missing the later part of Long Live Rock n Roll, Maybe Next Time, Since You Been Gone, and Man On The Silver Mountain. What is also curious is the Rainbow legacy web site lists two “bootlegs” from this concert, when I searched both on the Internet I came up with nothing so the possibility of fan produced titles or cd-r releases. What is interesting is both of those titles feature the complete show, could be either T had an incomplete version of the tape or there are multiple recordings that exist. The recording here is slightly distant, distortion is present and is somewhat muddy that falls in the fair to good range. The bass and drums are the worst, you can hear just a drum, no cymbals. There is just a bit of audience near the taper and it works for the tape as you can get a good idea of the atmosphere inside the venue, and from all accounts it was a hot show. Tarantura did a great job cleaning up the tape and make an average tape sound as good as it could get, making for a better listening experience.
The recording begins with Pomp and Circumstance already underway, Bobby Rondinelli does a bit of a warm up and the audience goes wild as Dorothy introduces the band and they launch into a brief snatch of Over The Rainbow into a band jam. Ritchie plays the frenzied riff to Spotlight Kid to start the concert proper, perfect opener for the group. Having listened to this release on my home stereo and in my car I have to say I prefer my home, the openness of the room makes for a better sound IMO. The band is in top notch form, they are extremely tight giving Ritchie the ability to solo at will. One only needs to listen to Rondinelli’s drumming at the end of the song! frickin great. Four songs from Straight Between The Eyes make the set list, Miss Mistreated is the first, the song translates great to the stage, this song could easily have been a slow blues song yet works with a faster tempo as well, the subject is something that Blackmore has visited many times. I Surrender is typical pop crap, David Rosenthal’s keys at the beginning remind me a bit of Don Airey’s yet the back up singers make for a sound that just doesn’t appeal to me, on a positive note the band play a nice version of the song, someone near the taper likes the song, they clap wildly as soon as the band starts, what do I know?
Blackmore and Co. get into a bit of blues, as soon as they start playing you tell yourself we need more of this, the song leads to Can’t Happen Here, fast paced up tempo with music that is a direct descendant of Kill The King, in the best way. Blackmore plays a melancholy piece that leads into Tearin’ Out My Heart, the impatient crowd clap and cheer loudly yet curiously quiet down as soon as JLT starts his vocal, great song and again this is territory Blackmore excels at, emotional blues. His playing is superlative and he takes a bit of a solo after the fast section, he abuses his Strat like only he can and plays an interesting combination of notes before leading into the ending of the song, he is awarded a loud ovation for his efforts. Of course the audience goes crazy as soon as he starts Lazy, of course its only a snippet, played at extreme high speed! With the audience firmly in the palm of his hand, he breaks into All Night Long, JLT does far better with the Down To Earth material. Of course the band get into a bit of improvisation, for a minute it sounds a bit like Hendrix’s Gypsy Eyes.
After a quick tape flip we are back and the keys of one David Rosenthal, he seems to play the medieval material well and teases with a bit of Child In Time, the solo spot catches you off guard as it slowly works into Stone Cold, the main single from the record. Great song, wish the back up singers were not there though, the band rocks it out during the choruses for maximum effect and the band play a pretty much straight forward take on it. Blackmore fiddles around a bit playing a bit of Woman From Tokyo before playing the last new song of the night, Power. Like Stone Cold, the band stick close to the recorded version, JLT says “Cmon Ritchie” and one expects fireworks but alas the unpredictable Blackmore plays it safe.
As with the past tour, Difficult To Cure is the improv piece, Rosenthal’s keys to start the song are perfect, his playing during this concert is spot on, he and Blackmore spar a bit and the anxious crowd claps as we listen to him prepare for the lead into Beethoven’s Ninth, needless to say the beginning of the song has a most mystical feel to it, like a wizard conjuring some up from the depths, with a bit of Arabic flair thrown in. The interplay between guitar and keys is excellent, they lock and together up and down scales effortlessly and get a nice ovation for their efforts. We finally get our best chance to hear Roger Glover, if you listened closely throughout the tape you can barely pick him out, now we get a full blown solo and it is great. He starts with a bit of music from Carmen opera then goes into a bit of Purple’s Black Night much to the delight of the audience. During his solo Rosenthal plays happy birthday, why you ask? because it’s Roger Glovers birthday! He also plays a more complete piece from Carmen as well that brings a bit of levity to the proceedings. Blackmore re-enters the fray that leads to the end of Difficult To Cure that leads to a band jam that leads into a Bobby Rondinelli drum solo! He hammers the hell out of his kit and even in the average sound quality you get a feeling of how powerful a drummer he is. Sadly the recording ends 2:40 into Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll as the band was certainly firing on all cylinders.
The packaging is typical Tarantura, gatefold sleeve with live shots from the tour, the cover with the eyes suspended overhead makes for an excellent cover. As usual the CD’s have pictures on them and a poster of Ritchie is included, a nice bonus and the title is a numbered edition limited to 150 copies. Tarantura’s mastering has been excellent, their work on this title is to be commended and full points go to releasing something that has not been out in mass circulation, yet the average sound quality make this release more for the seasoned collector.