Those who’ve bought into Blackmore’s Night’s Renaissance/medieval musical world can fill their breeches as they dance around the maypole to this collection of jigs, reels and suitably reworked covers of Mike Oldfield’s Moonlight Shadow, Linda Ronstadt’s Long Long Time and Sonny & Cher’s I Got You Babe, where Ritchie Blackmore not surprisingly declines Sonny’s role, leaving Candice Night to duet with backing singer Lady Lynn.
Night’s voice remains a softer, more engaging version of Stevie Nicks’ piercing whine that fits the music and ambience.
Those in continued mourning for the loss of one of heavy metal’s greatest guitarists should suspend their myopia long enough to check out Darker Shade Of Black. It’s a mash-up of Albinoni’s Adagio and Pink Floyd’s Saucerful Of Secrets, which climaxes with a controlled, fast, fluid electric solo that perfectly illustrates where Blackmore now stands, while combining echoes of his past.
The only song that threatens to disrupt Blackmore’s Night’s idyll is the title track, a folky slice of Europop with a Teutonic stomp and a rousing bierkeller chorus. It’s the kind of song that could easily win the Eurovision Song Contest. Now that really would put an embarrassing dent in Blackmore’s legacy.