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Excellent last studio release until “Stranger In Us All”, twelve years later. This album features an eficient and profesional line-up, with Chuck Burgi, instead of Rondinelli, David Rosenthal on keyboards, Joe Lynn Turner still on vocals and Glover and Blackmore. Ritchie has always been accompanied by great musicians, there is no doubt, and the band of “Bent Out Of Shape” is unquestionably great.
The album’s sound can’t be compared with the Dio era metal masterpieces (of course), but it’s probably a return to the “Difficult To Cure” more influenced, a bit, by the NWOBHM sound (that also benefited the Purple family bands, including Whitesnake and Gillan). Tracks like “Street Of Dreams”, “Desperate Heart” or “Can’t Let You Go” show the melodic sound Rainbow used to play in the Turner era, but although those songs are good and deserve to be included in every band’s compilation, there are some others that really show a more metal sound. I mean “Fool For The Night”, “Drinking With The Devil” (a very underrated song which I really like) or “Fire Dance”. Those songs have got speed, power and show an aggressive sound that only few tracks of the precedent album have. Also I highlight the instrumental “Anybody There”, a piece that reminds me of Malmsteen and company stuff. “Snowman”, in my opinion, is the only one that fails on “Bent Out Of Shape”, specially because those electrical drums, but it’s not really bad at all. “Make Your Move” and “Stranded” also sound awesome, but unfortunately, Blackmore seems to forget this album’s stuff.
In conclusion, this is probably the best Turner era Rainbow album and I think a band fan must have it because on it, they went back to the metal they forgot a bit on “Straight Between The Eyes” and also the production is better. So I don’t think nobody would feel deceived after listening to this great release.