The Best Of Rainbow

1981 | PODV 2 | Polydor

‘The Best Of Rainbow’ 1981 PODV 2 Polydor

Album information/credits:

2LP Compilation of earlier Rainbow studio album releases
Cover design: Hipgnosis
Photography: Hipgnosis


Ritchie Blackmore – guitar
Ronnie James Dio/Graham Bonnet/Joe Lynn Turner – vocals
Mickey Lee Soule/Tony Carey/David Stone/Don Airey – keyboards
Craig Gruber/Jimmy Bain/Bob Daisley/Roger Glover – bass
Gary Driscoll/Cozy Powell/Bob Rondinelli – drums

Track listing (Side 1):

1. All Night Long
2. Man On The Silver Mountain
3. Lost In Hollywood
4. Jealous Lover
5. Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll

Track listing (Side 2):

1. Stargazer
2. Kill The King
3. A Light In The Black

Track listing (Side 3):

1. Since You Been Gone
2. 16th Century Greensleeves
3. Catch The Rainbow
4. The Eyes Of The World

Track listing (Side 2):

1. I Surrender
2. Gates Of Babylon
3. Can’t Happen Here
4. Starstruck

Album review:

Well, it’s a best of compilation and that’s exactly what we get! Nothing new or particularly unexpected, but with one bonus  in ‘Jealous Lover’ being included for the first time on LP (previously only available as a B side to the single  ‘Can’t Happen Here’). The overall track listing is an excellent representation of the first 5 years of Rainbow, and what is probably most interesting is the development of the sound and the song types in a relatively short space of time, probably helped (or hindered, depending on your point of view) by the vast array of musicians that contributed in this time – 4 different bass players, 4 different keyboard players, 3 singers and 3 drummers – only Blackmore is the constant throughout.

The packaging itself is rather odd and very restrained, and seems to have nothing whatsoever to do with Rainbow. Typically Hipgnosis in style but one suspects that the imagery and layout could have been used for pretty much anyone rather than being specifically created for Rainbow.

From the first 5 Rainbow LPs, the following tracks have been included:

Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow:

Man On The Silver Mountain
16th Century Greensleeves
Catch The Rainbow

Rainbow Rising:

A Light In The Black

Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll:

Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll
Kill The King
Gates Of Babylon

Down To Earth:

All Night Long
Lost In Hollywood
Since You Been Gone
The Eyes Of The World

Difficult To Cure:

Jealous Lover
I Surrender
Can’t Happen Here

OVERALL RATING: 9/10 (for the compilation, but only 5/10 for relevance as most fans would have all these tracks already)