Blackmore's Night
Nature's Light


3.0
good

Review

by Divaman USER (165 Reviews)
March 21st, 2021 | 41 replies


Release Date: 03/12/2021 | Tracklist

Review Summary: "Wish you were here/Me, oh, my country man/Wish you were here."

Blackmore's Night is back with their eleventh studio LP (their first in six years), and I, for one, am glad to hear from them. Ritchie Blackmore, of course, is a rock guitar legend, best known for his days with Deep Purple and Blackmore's Rainbow. For the last almost-quarter of a century, though, he and his wife Candice Night, have been making folk and Renaissance music together, and have established an audience of their own throughout the world, particularly in Germany and Japan. They recorded Nature's Light in 2019 for a planned release in April of 2020. Then COVID happened, and, well, you know how that goes. In any event, the album has finally been released by Edel Records, the German label that released their first two LPs back in the late 1990s. So I guess things have come full circle.

My overall impression is that yes, this is definitely a Blackmore's Night album. Which is to say that if you liked the first ten Blackmore's Night LPs, you're going to like this one as well. They're not really breaking any new ground here, which I guess isn't surprising, given that Blackmore is now 75 years old. (Candice is considerably younger.) And I wouldn't say this is one of the band's very best albums. Nevertheless, Nature's Light is a solid effort, and one that I find has grown on me the more I've listened to it.

Blackmore and Night seem to have played most of the instruments between them here, with Ritchie handling the various stringed apparatuses, Night playing the woodwinds and tambourine, and David Baranowski (aka Bard David of Larchmont) adding the keyboards. Night, as always, sang all of the lead vocals, and some of the harmonies as well, with other backing vocals contributed by Bard David and Blackmore and Night's two children, Autumn and Rory Blackmore.

The songs on this LP provide a nice mix of styles. The title track is something of a royal processional theme, while other tracks mix folk and folk rock, blues rock, medieval and renaissance folk, and even Slavic-sounding folk. There are two (basically) instrumental tracks: "Darker Shade of Black" (which sounds like a tribute to Procol Harum's "Repent Walpurgis"), and "Der Ietzke Muskatier", a more blues-oriented track. These are the two songs where Blackmore cuts loose a bit with some electric guitar. There are also two covers: "Second Element", which is a cover of a song that Sarah Brightman recorded on her 1993 Dive album; and "Wish You Were Here", a cover of a track by Swedish pop country band Rednex that Blackmore's Night first recorded on their initial LP, 1997's Shadow of the Moon. ("Wish You Were Here" has become one of the most beloved and requested songs over the years at their live shows).

As usual, Night's vocals are impeccable throughout -- I can really never say enough about how beautiful and pure her voice is. (And having seen her live many times over the years, I can promise you it doesn't sound that way because of studio trickery. Her voice is just as lovely and consistent in concert.)

So, like an old friend, Blackmore's Night is back. And to me, it feels like they've never really been away.



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user ratings (10)
2.7
average

Comments:Add a Comment 
Divaman
March 21st 2021


12549 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Figured I'd at least let people know this album is out there.

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zakalwe
March 21st 2021


34613 Comments


Nice one Diva

Pangea
March 21st 2021


7091 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

i liked the one song you shared in sotd a while ago so might give this a shot

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e210013
March 21st 2021


3587 Comments


Nice to see you again in form and writing a new review, Diva. I didn't know that they had released another album. Another one to be checked by me. Nice review. Pos.

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alamo
March 21st 2021


4223 Comments


this cover was definitely a choice

Divaman
March 21st 2021


12549 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Thanks guys. Yeah, e, that was one of the main reasons I wrote the review - I suspect a lot of people have no idea this album is even out there. So far (as of yesterday, at least), I'm the only one who's rated it.

Jethro42
March 21st 2021


16758 Comments


I've seen this album into a recent list of yours (good and strategic timing to write a review about it), and I did intend to check it out since then. Will do.

Review looks like a 4/5 rating. But as we know it, you always lower your ratings. Good one, Diva.

Divaman
March 21st 2021


12549 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Thanks Jethro. I really do have it as a 3 -- it's not one of their top level albums, like Ghost of a Rose or even Dancer and the Moon. But I think I like it better than the last one, and I'm always glad to get new music by them.

Jethro42
March 21st 2021


16758 Comments


''Wish You Were Here'' is written by Mostly Autumn, isn't it?

Divaman
March 21st 2021


12549 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

No, that's a different song. That's actually Mostly Autumn covering Pink Floyd.

Jethro42
March 21st 2021


16758 Comments


I knew this song before, Diva. I had it in my head before I heard it. Or it's a BN reprise, or it's from Mostly Autumn ;)

Jethro42
March 21st 2021


16758 Comments


Fair enough, but no, Diva. Not for that actual song Wish You Were Here

Divaman
March 21st 2021


12549 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

It's a BN reprise. They first recorded it on back on Shadow of the Moon in 1997. But it's a cover of a Rednex song (which I never knew until I did a little research for this review.) I haven't double checked, but BN might well also have it on one or more of their live or compilation LPs. It's been a staple of their live show for decades.

They said they re-recorded for this album, because 1. It's been almost 25 years since their original recording, and 2. Because this version is much closer to the way they perform it now live.

Divaman
March 21st 2021


12549 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I watched an interview Candice did to promote the new album, and she said they originally recorded it in part because while the Rednex version was huge in Europe in the early 1990's, the only Rednex song the American audience was familiar with was "Cotton-Eyed Joe", which was an atypical song for them.

Of course, back when BN was recording their first LP, they had no idea that the majority of their success would come in Germany and Japan. They do have a core audience over here, but it's a relatively tiny one, and they've never gotten any airplay here whatsoever, except for the occasional spin on college radio (which is where I first heard them.)

Jethro42
March 21st 2021


16758 Comments


Good research, buddy. Pretty good emotional song it is.

Divaman
March 21st 2021


12549 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Thanks, and agreed. It's a song that has always stuck with me. Some reviewers for this LP have criticized them for "filling out" the new album by re-recording a previously recorded song. But as a longtime fan of the band, I'm happy that they re-recorded it here.

Jethro42
March 21st 2021


16758 Comments


Pos'd your last few comments ;)

Divaman
March 21st 2021


12549 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

They've also been criticized over the years for recording so many covers. But the first song I ever heard of theirs, and the first thing that drew me to them, was their cover of Renaissance's "Ocean Gypsy".

Jethro42
March 21st 2021


16758 Comments


Yes sir, I'm aware of that one. Beautiful one. Normal to get tempted to cover Ocean Gypsy. I, for one, can't stand a band that nearly ripping off half of an album from different artists without mentioning the actual author who is credited for. For instance, a beautiful symphonic album from Fatal Fusion where they copycat at least 2 artists.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2v4jjBJ3vU

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
March 21st 2021


9231 Comments


Good and informative review, pos, I need to listen to their first few LPs at least.

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