The rise of the bootleg industry in Japan from 1975 onwards coincided with the visits by new rising stars, such as Queen and Rainbow. Their 1976 tours were not just being taped by a number of enterprising fans and collectors – like Mr. Peach, who taped every single performance – but multiple titles were made available on the underground market. There were three for both bands: ZOOM, INVITE YOU TO A NIGHT AT THE OPERA and LAZING ON A SUNDAY EVENING for Queen and BLACKMORE THE RAIDER, plus the lesser known CATCH THE RAINBOW and Seven Bridge Rainbow bootlegs.
In addition, a recording of the Nagoya concert on December 7th made its way into the hands of Vicky Vinyl and was released in 1977 as GUITAR VANGUARD with Dragonfly, Duck and Ruthless Rhymes labels. Yet another Japanese release – SORT OF FUCKING BORING OLD FART – made use of a tape from the Munich, Germ,any concert.
BLACKMORE THE RAIDER contains an excerpt of the first show of the tour, which took place at the Tokyo Taiikukan on 02 December, 1976(its English name is Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium). Built in 1954 for the World Wrestling Championship and also used as the venue for gymnastics at the 1964 Summer Olympics, this venue was only used in a few occasions for rock concerts. Pink Floyd and Rory Gallagher had previously played here on their second Japan tours in 1972 and 1975, respectively. It seems that the first show had a crowd problem already, something that would repeat in other shows as well and culminate in the death of a fan at the Sapporo concert on their next tour in early 1978.
Matrix: IMP 1202 A II” / “IMP 1202 B II (handwritten, like for all fake IMP releases)
Japan: 1977 (doubted by the excellent dio.net/Tapio Rainbow bootlegs website but this is not a US release, which becomes clearer when seeing all these fake Idle Mind titles presented together). Tapio states 300 – 500 may have been pressed.
Audience recording rated. VG+/EX- Total time: 57:56
The following is the original set list and bold titles are on the LP (or excerpts of these). “Catch The Rainbow” has a cut. In “Stargazer”, the keyboard solo intro has been omitted, “Still I’m Sad” is only the second half.
Band Tuning – Over The Rainbow
Kill The King
Mistreated Introduction, Riot, Promoters Speech, Mistreated
16th Century Greensleeves
Niji, Herz and Mund und Tat und Leben BWV147 – Catch The Rainbow
Lazy – White Christmas – Man On The Silver Mountain – Blues – Man On The Silver Mountain – Starstruck – Man On The Silver Mountain
Ronnies MC – Keyboard Solo
Still I’m Sad, Keyboard Solo, Drum Solo – 1812 Overture – Drum Solo – Still I’m Sad (reprise)
Do You Close Your Eyes (guitar clashing) – Over The Rainbow
The insert is described as “rather thin and brittle paper”. Some copies appear orange while others lean more towards a faded red/almost pink appearance.
The tour book and a ticket for the final day of the tour.
Concert description based on the Aquarius source tape used for one of the later CD releases:
“Rainbow’s first Japanese tour in December of 1976 is well covered in traders circles as recordings for all the gigs circulate and some shows have multiple recordings, also the band professionally recording some of the dates for the On Stage record. This release covers the first show in Japan and the first of three shows in Tokyo. The recording is slightly distant and muffled and becomes distorted at the really loud parts but you can make out the individual instruments for the most part and there is little if any hiss present.
The recording is said to come from the master cassette from Aquarius. The show opens with a typical brutal version of Kill the King that starts the crowd off, by the time Ronnie James Dio does the introduction to Mistreated the crowd is so worked up they beginning to get out of hand and a rush the stage so the concert is halted while order is restored. While know for his fantasy based lyrics Dio does very well singing this classic song and it is very well received.
Niji is nothing more than Ronnie lighting up the large rainbow that would cover over the stage and serves as the introduction the a beautiful Catch The Rainbow. The studio version is merely a introduction the live versions from this era, 14 minutes of fantastic playing as Blackmore pushes himself in a flurry of notes.
Band introductions, a brief snatch of Purples Lazy and a little White Christmas flows into a nice Man On The Silver Mountain, the sound of the band and the clapping of the audience is almost too much for the recorder the handle, typical of the era the track includes a nice blues section and a snippet of Starstruck. What is nice when Blackmore goes into a solo with out the band the recording clears up significantly so you can really enjoy the sound.
Disc 2 begins with Ronnie introducing a song about wizards and a typically heavy version of the classic Stargazer follow a brief solo from Tony Carey that sound a little like a Jon Lord solo at times. Stargazer on stage is stunning and is a shame that the recording is not clearer to even further enjoy is magnificence even more.
The old Yardbirds classic Still I’m Sad is up next, used as a vehicle for Cozy’s drum solo and the 1812 orchestration is it an essential part of the show. His drumming gives such a powerful backbone to the music it is often overlooked by Blackmore’s guitar, which leads us the what you would guess is the encore. The crowd is whipped into a frenzy by this point and goes crazy as Blackmore demolishes his guitar. The recording comes to an end, the band leaves the stage to the sounds of Judy Garland sing the famous Over The Rainbow. ” [collectorsmusicreviews.com]