Reviews: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Resurrection Band - Rainbow's End
   
Musical Style: Hard Rock Produced By: Resurrection Band
Record Label: Star Song Country Of Origin: USA
Year Released: 1979 Artist Website: Resurrection Band
Tracks: 10 Rating: 90%
Running Time: 36:10

Resurrection Band - Rainbows End

Resurrection Band came out of the Chicago, Illinois based Jesus People USA community in 1978 with the blues based hard rock its full length debut Awaiting Your Reply.  Returning a year later with a more guitar driven follow up effort in Rainbow’s End, Resurrection Band still allows for the acoustic guitar to play a role in its music (check out “Concert For A Queen” and “Every Time It Rains”) while maintaining the blues based elements to its sound as well (“Paint A Picture” comes to mind).  Nevertheless, when it comes to straightforward hard rock, nobody does it better than classic Resurrection Band (if in doubt then give “Midnight Son”, Sacrifice Of Love”, “Skyline” and “The Wolfsong” several spins).  Rainbow’s End, all in all, adds up to a well rounded work that has stood the test of time due to its amazing continuity: the album opens to four straight hard rockers and a ballad followed by four more hard rockers and one final ballad.  It makes perfect sense.  In terms of pure consistency, Rainbow’s End must also be mentioned when discussing the bands finest efforts musically, ranking alongside the likes of Silence Screams, Innocent Blood and Lament in that I rarely, if ever, end up hitting the skip button.

While originally released on Star Song records in 1979, Rainbow’s End was re-issued in late 2007 by Grrr Records.

Glenn Kaiser remains a steady presence with his trademark gritty and blues soaked lead vocal style.  He also fills in on rhythm guitar in addition to contributing the lead guitar work to “Paint A Picture” and “Sacrifice Of Love”.  Wife Wendi Kaiser continues to make here mark as well, singing at her rawest and raspiest on “Strongman”, “Sacrifice Of Love” and the albums catchy title track.  Lead guitarist Stu Heiss joins his blues based playing – his soloing stands out best on “Midnight Son” and “The Wolfsong” - with the sturdy rhythm section of drummer John Herrin and bassist Jim Denton.

The production values to Rainbow’s End come across on the thin side of things.  The rhythm guitar, in particular, could have been beefed up a bit and the drums mixed with a bit more punch and power.  That being said, it is only fair to point out that Rainbow’s End was recorded on a small Christian label using late seventies technology.

As with Awaiting Your Reply, a vinyl copy of Rainbow’s End is necessary to fully appreciate its packaging.

Rainbows End inner sleave

Track By Track

A bass guitar solo opens “Midnight Son” before a slamming guitar riff takes over, urging the song ahead hard and heavy until Glenn and Wendi trade vocal lines throughout a chorus giving rise to a worshipful feel:

Oh, You light up the sky
You're the power of the sun
You're the starlight in the darkness
On Your laughter shadows run
You're the might wind of glory
And the Father all in one
You're the Morning Star
You're the Midnight Son

Heiss follows with several seconds of gritty lead work.

Wendi handles lead vocals on the driving hard rocker “Strongman”.  Fading in to several seconds of guitar feedback, “Strongman” slowly advances to a blues heavy riff until evenly flowing to a brief but resounding and hook-filled chorus.  I like how the song breaks for an acoustic guitar interlude before it ends as a crashing gong gives way to the tribal beat that segues into “Afrikaans”:

"Afrikaans" immediately begins to its bristling chorus as an edgy open air rhythm guitar backs Glenn as he expounds upon the issue of apartheid:

I hear the gunfire, see the blood run, feel the rage
I see a black man, see a coloured man in a cage

Once the rhythm section kicks in as “Afrikaans” reaches its first verse, it proceeds in a mid-tempo heading until the rhythm guitar moves to the front of the mix and buttresses the knife-edged scene.  Glenn continues to address the issue of racism during the songs third verse:

Forget the black man, neglect his baby, ignore his hell
We need apartheid to keep the animal in his cell

Before he sums things up during its fourth and final verse:

God makes the color, but the color doesn't make you God...

Standing out with its energetic presence and catchy hook, “Skyline” represents all that works well on Rainbow’s End.  A bluesy harmonica joins with a metal laced rhythm guitar the distance of the song, putting in place a robust environs that brings to mind other Rez Band classics such as “Babylon” (off DMZ) and “City Streets” (from Colours).  With Glenn again handling lead vocals, “Skyline” touches upon the spiritual challenges facing those dwelling in the inner city:

I'm seeing the starvation of this population
Their faces speak of no place to go

Lost in the alleys playin' the games
Disguise your feelings, you'll go insane

Faith is the flame we must hold
Doubt the deceiver, hope the believer

The ballad “Paint A Picture” commences as a piano and acoustic guitar underlines its first verse, a touch of rhythm guitar highlighting the mix as the song picks up in pace for the emotionally charged chorus that follows.  Glenn really stands out here with his bluesy lead work and gravelly performance on lead vocals.  “Paint A Picture” does exactly that of the emptiness and loneliness of life while contrasting it with the completeness that can be found in Christ’s finished work on the cross:

Paint a picture
Of a lonely life
Paint a picture
Of a cold, gray night
Paint a picture
Of the emptiest day
You've ever known

Paint that picture
And you can start
To understand the love of the Savior
And oh, how He understands you
Paint a picture of a blood covered cross
See that picture
And you'll know what it cost
The price God paid
To prove His love for you

The albums title track immediately jump embarks to a catchy guitar riff that sustains its first and second verse in hard hitting fashion, Wendi detailing the lessons learned from Noah and the flood as the song tapers off for its abundant chorus:

Forty days and forty nights
Noah sailed a sea of tears
And the lessons learned of the flood
Shouts across the years

Heiss’ biting lead guitar precedes the catchy riff returning for the songs third and final verse as it ends by portraying the true “Rainbow’s End”:

Jesus is the living ark
Nothing in the world compares with Him

He alone is Heaven's Door
He's the Promise, He's the Rainbow's End

On the beautiful but haunting semi ballad “Concert For A Queen” Glenn delivers his most even vocal of the album.  The song gets underway as an acoustic guitar flows between the left and right channel, the near ambient setting maintained as it drifts through its first and second verse at a serene mid-tempo pace.  Gaining momentum, “Concert For A Queen” culminates in a poignant manner as it smoothly flows through its third and final verse.

Wendi’s raspy voice is part of the mix as “Sacrifice Of Love” jumps out of the gate at an upbeat tempo.  After a bouncing guitar sustains the song during its first verse, it reaches a catchy chorus in which Denton’s punchy bass plays a prominent role:
 
Sacrifice, it was a sacrifice of love
There is a price to pay, today or later on

Denton’s bass returns to back Glenn as he cuts loose with a ripping guitar solo.  “Sacrifice Of Love” talks about exactly that:

The road is narrow, the cross is real
But its' the right way, it don't matter how you feel
Because the Savior, the Savior doesn't change
Not even death could hold Him in the grave

Fading in to a drum solo, the aggressive “The Wolfsong” advances through its first three verses to just the right amount of edgy rhythm guitar as Glenn focuses on the abuse and excesses of televangelists:

Oh, I'm an actor
I've polished my lines
I know how to take your
every nickel and dime

I've mastered all the right angles
And the left ones too
I'm a box office smash
An' the cash is my golden rule

The song drives ahead to a pounding riff as Heiss wails away with several seconds of lead guitar, not culminating until reaching its fourth verse as Glenn effectively sums things up:

You'll know them by their love and by their fruit
Not by pearly teeth, Mercedes or fine suits
Not by where they go or what they can afford
Not just by Jesus as their Savior
But as their Lord

Resurrection Band was way ahead of its time on this track.

Almost atmospheric – if not poignant – in capacity, “Every Time It Rains” stands out as one of the albums highlights.  A crashing thunderstorm initiates the song before an acoustic guitar slowly compels it ahead to a chorus coming across in the form of a prayer:

Jesus, You cried for me, when I could weep no more
You died for me when I was dead in sin
You felt for me when I was numb within
You searched for me and brought me home again

The distant saxophone solo closing out the final minute to “Every Time It Rains” adds the perfect touch.

The fact Resurrection Band performed three songs off Rainbow’s End on its 1992 live album Twenty Years attests to not only its musical strength but ability to weather the test of time as well.  Rez Band certainly has recorded its share of noteworthy releases over the year but did not reach this level of consistency and continuity until its late eighties offerings
Silence Screams and Innocent Blood.  Only a thin sounding production job prevents the album from achieving a higher score.
 
Review by: Andrew Rockwell

Track Listing: “Midnight Son” (3:16), “Strongman” (3:41), “Afrikaans” (3:10), “Skyline” (3:10), “Paint A Picture” (4:47), “Rainbow’s End” (3:47), “Concert For A Queen” (3:16), “Sacrifice Of Love” (3:03), “The Wolfsong” (3:14), “Every Time It Rains” (4:46)

Musicians
Glenn Kaiser – Lead Vocals & Guitars
Wendi Kaiser – Lead Vocals
Stu Heiss – Guitars, Piano, Organ, Moog Synthesizer, Heiss Box Guitar Synthesizer
Jim Denton – Bass & Acoustic Guitar
John Herrin – Drums
Tom Cameron – Harmonica
Roger Heiss – Percussion

Also Reviewed: Resurrection Band – Awaiting Your Reply, Resurrection Band - Civil Rites, Glenn Kaiser Band – Carolina Moon

 

Reviews: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
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