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LANDING WITH FULL FORCE
on 12 March 2017
How do you follow an album which basically became the Band's "Signature" Album? The most obvious answer is simply "you don't, as you'll never better perfection", That said, there's certainly no harm in trying and this was a worthy successor. The eagerly anticipated follow-up to the Phenomenal "Rising",the album which catapulted the band into the public consciousness (beyond Deep Purple Fans, who already knew of Ritchie's existence) this is yet another masterpiece from the band, and helped cement their place in people's memories. One of the first things you notice is the Personnel Changes, With Graham Bonet replacing Ronnie James Dio on Vocals, and Don Airey being brought in on keyboards. The album itself, serves as a worthy follow up to Rising, but should also be judged in its own right, not just as a followup.
It starts off steady enough, and slowly builds, a bit like a menacing creature creeping up on you, and it doesn't take long at all before it bursts into life. Pretty much like all incarnations of the band, they carry on where the previous one left off, and you don't see the join. Graham Bonet proves to be a more than adequate vocalist, and while none of the songs really cover topics that would later become familiar as "Ronnie's type pf tracks" Bonet more than holds his own, not least on the two tracks which were later released as singles, Since you've been Gone and All Night Long (the latter most definitely NOT to be confused with the Lionel Ritchie single of the same name)!
While these two are the most recognisable tracks on the album, for me, there are others just as good, not least the final track on the Album; Lost in Hollywood, which really exercises Graham Bonet's vocal chords! The line up lasted for a couple of years, until the new album would be released with yet another new line up, Graham Bonet having left the band (or been sacked by Ritchie) a departure which shocked absolutely nobody at all,, seeing as his appearance was constantly being citicised by Ritchie (he looked a sort of cross between a 50's Rocker, with his slicked back hairstyle, and a beach bun, (complete with Hawaiian shirt), The departure, though, would do him no harm, as he would re-emerge a few times later, either with different bands, or in his own right