The Battle Rages On was the last album to feature the Mark II lineup. They were originally going to hire Mike DiMeo as a replacement for Joe Lynn Turner, but they eventually rehired Gillian instead, thus causing the album to be reworked. Two singles were released: “Anya” and “Time to Kill”. The album reached #192 in the US and #21 in the UK. Blackmore was so infuriated with the album that he left the band during the tour, and was replaced by Joe Satriani. The album was produced by Thom Panunzio.
Ian Gillian: vocals
Ritchie Blackmore: guitar
Roger Glover: bass
Jon Lord: keyboards
Ian Paice: drums
- “The Battle Rages On” : Gillian ‘s back with a vengeance on this, and Blackmore and Lord sound great. The song sounds made for a DND campaign.
- “Lick It Up”: A corny title, but it has a great hook. Paice’s drumming has a good groove.
- ” Anya”: Another very strong song with great vocals, and Lord really shows off. One of the best songs on the album.
- “Talk About Love”: The drumming and bass are good on this one, and Gillian hasn’t lost his stride yet.
- ” Time to Kill “: Both of the singles are pretty strong.
- ” Ramshackle Man”: This is a great tale, and Lord’s keyboard gets a good focus.
- “A Twist of the Tale” : Another one of my favorite songs, probably right behind “Anya” and the title track.
- “Nasty Piece of Work “: This is a fun tune. I keep wondering why Blackmore hated this album.
- ” Solitaire”: This one has a good bassline.
- “One Man’s Meat”: The only song I didn’t really care for. But I don’t think I hate it.
Final Verdict: An amazing album for Mark II’s last hurrah.