Classic Rock


Live At The Rainbow ’78

- Rich davenport


Never mind the ballads.

Vintage AOR appears to have been absorbed into the general classic rock pantheon of late, appropriat­ely so in the case of this remastered, remixed concert recorded back when Foreigner still had cranked Les Pauls beneath the smooth harmonies. Vocalist Lou Gramm left in 1990 to return to the harder rock they’d abandoned, and this album shows exactly what he was missing.

Kicking off with Long, Long Way From Home, the sound is driven by guitarist Mick Jones’s brash riffing and Dennis Elliott’s muscular drumming. Ensemble backing vocals on strident renditions of Double Vision and Feels Like The First Time bolster Gramm’s deceptivel­y powerful lead, and the proggy Starrider adds a lighter interlude. As they strut through Hot Blooded with amps on 11 and a gutsy vocal from Gramm, there’s no doubt that Foreigner’s original line-up knew exactly what love was and didn’t need anybody to show them. ■■■■■■■■■■

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