Blackmore's Night

BLACKMORE’S NIGHT – Autumn Sky

Autumn SkyOk, here’s another album from former Deep Purple / Rainbow guitarist Ritchie Blackmore and his wife Candice Night. Anybody but me who is getting really tired of Blackmore’s renaissance mumbo jumbo? Well, ok, I actually really liked their two first albums and I’m not gonna say that the rest of the CDs – can’t remember how many they are by now – are bad but if you have heard one of them, you have heard them all. Pretty much. The music, for you who have never heard it, is kind of renaissance music that was played in the middle ages and Blackmore and his chick dresses up like Robin Hood, looking all goofy. In the beginning of their career the music felt new and interesting and frankly, quite fun, but after a bunch of albums which all sounds the same, it is getting old. And their albums always contains too many songs, never less than 14, but often more. Ok, so Blackmore has dug up his old Fender Stratocasteer again and there are always some interesting re-recordings (covers?) of his old Rainbow and Deep Purple tunes on every album of late – which kind of makes you wonder if Blackmore actually misses those good old days when he got to rock.

But back to this album. On their later efforts they have been throwing their ears over to Sweden and found a bunch of, at least to the rest of the world, obscure cover choices. On their last album they made a cover of a Rednex song (remember them, the techno country hillbilly crap band?) and on this album we get covers of One More Time’s ”Highland” and Nordman’s ”Journeyman” (original title in Swedish: ”Vandraren” which actually means wanderer) if anyone knows about these songs. It’s no news that Blackmore always had a soft spot for Swedish pop group ABBA and ABBAs piano player Benny Andersson’s son Peter is the keyboard player / main song writer for One More Time, so I guess that’s how they found out about that song. With “Journeyman”, I’m clueless. There not bad, but both of them completely pointless. Other than those there is actually nothing to name drop here except maybe ”Keeper Of The Flame”, a good track that wears traces of old Rainbow. I won’t call this crap, but this makes me sleepy. Why he prefers to make this kind of music instead of the Classic Rock he was born to do is anyone’s guess and I would be surprised if there are any old Blackmore fan out there who would choose this over Rainbow or Purple. Why not reform Rainbow and have Blackmore’s Night as a side project? On the other hand, I’m a sucker for people who does exactly what they want and don’t give a shit what other think – I totally respect that. Still, I can’t help wishing for Blackmore to go back out there and rock. Also, the production feels cold and sterile and the album is full of synthesizers and drum machines. I’m sorry, but there is nothing here at all to write home about. If you’re a big fan of Blackmore’s Night, then I guess you’ll dig this one as well, but this just isn’t fun anymore.

Jon Wilmenius (5/10)

Tracklist:

01. Highland
02. Vagabond (Make A Princess Of Me)
03. Journeyman (Vandraren)
04. Believe In Me
05. Sake Of The Song
06. Song And Dance (Pt. 2)
07. Celluloid Heroes
08. Keeper Of The Flame
09. Night At Eggersberg
10. Strawberry Girl
11. All The Fun Of The Fayre
12. Darkness
13. Dance Of The Darkness
14. Health To The Company
15. Barbara Allen

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