The question that must lurk in the recesses of your mind when you sit back and watch this concert is: how can this ye old folk music come from the mind of the legendary electric guitar hero, who scored the riff for such stunning rock anthems as Black Night, Smoke On The Water (with Deep Purple) and Man On A Silver Mountain (with Rainbow)? Sadly - whether you like to acknowledge it or not - this is that guy.
It is not bad music per se; to some these songs could be beautifully composed, harmonic tunes revoking a time long gone by. Yet to others it could simply be insipid and boring - I'm inclined to go with the latter.
Sitting through this concert, consisting of more than twenty songs, is like having your ears coated in an unknown organic substance. It could be momentarily healthy but it gets boring very quickly and it is a time-consuming exercise that honestly isn't worth your patience.
Blackmore's Night is headed by Ritchie Blackmore and his American partner Candice Night - hence the name. They've been around for almost a decade with six albums under their belt so it sounds like they mean business. The couple have musicians to accompany them and they have even christened the individual members of their band with such titles as 'Bard David Of Larchmont' boy, it is so easy to take the Mick on this one but I must refrain.
The good news is: we are treated to live versions of Deep Purple classics Soldier Of Fortune, Black Night and Child In Time. The bad news is, blatantly, they escape the glorious sounds of the original versions due to (obvious) major reinterpretation.
Although Candice is a good singer, she has next to nothing to offer on stage and her dodgy dances with Ritchie are hardly memorable at all. Also, her slow whiney American banter in between songs is tedious and at times embarrassing.
Castles & Dreams is a 2-disc set filled with a load of extras including music videos, an acoustic set, exclusive documentaries and the usual banal stuff like biographies and discographies. It may be a scrumptious package but it is most definitely for their select fan base only.
After it was all over (a tortuous 230 minutes for the complete 2 discs) I couldn't help but wonder if this once truly mammoth rock legend would turn back the clock, not to the old age but to the Seventies. Perhaps then he would be inspired to create more of those immense riffs that have proven difficult (if at all) to be bettered. As Morgan Freeman said right at the end of The Shawshank Redemption: "I hope..."