Not only is Ritchie Blackmore one of the technically most accomplished guitarists in the world, he is also one of the most exceptional and uncompromising musicians. Following his extremely successful years with Deep Purple... more » and Rainbow, he left all commercial considerations aside, founding Blackmore´s Night with his partner Candice Night and devoting himself single-mindedly to his greatest passion, the music of the Middle Ages. Since then the renaissance-infused magic of Blackmore's Night has captured the hearts and minds of fans and media around the globe. With such successful albums as Fires At Midnight, Ghost of a Rose, and Beyond The Sunset: The Romantic Collection now behind them and etched into history, the band is proud to present the brand new DVD, Castles & Dreams. This exciting visual project takes you to a beautifully filmed concert in a German castle and also contains numerous television performances, video clips, interviews and much more!« less
Ryan Seek | Maricopa, AZ United States | 10/22/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"...and travel back in time. The renaissance to be exact. With this DVD concert, Blackmore's Night will take you on a very magical journey into a land of Castles and Dreams. Quality wise, this is as good as it gets. Awesome video and audio, and a two-hour courtyard stroll through bonus material where the band often breaks into song in restaurants, on trains, and in castle halls.
Extras aside, I would buy this DVD for the concert alone. Blackmore's Night, stage and musicians decked out in full renaissance, easily drew me into their world of bards and minstrels. I couldn't help it, they had me dancing and clapping along in my own living room.
It's always nice to see artists having so much fun performing their craft. Watching Castles & Dreams, one can only come to one conclusion; Blackmore's Night really enjoys playing their music. Even the ever-stoic Ritchie Blackmore can be seen laughing and teasing his bandmates (in between constant fiddling with his equipment as the show goes on). Up front, Candice Night is absolutely captivating. If you're not in love with her yet (be you gay, straight, male or female), you will be after watching this concert.
Blackmore's Night is a refreshing band in my opinion, writing songs that simply get back to basics. It's all about the melody here, a unique combination of medieval folk music and rock-n-roll. I didn't know it until I bought Castles & Dreams, but Blackmore's Night is a very improvisational band. While playing their many entrancing songs, they'll often break off into an instrumental jam session or spin off on some medley combining BN material and classical pieces, along with snippets of Blackmore's previous bands, Deep Purple and Rainbow. Ritchie plays a myriad of ancient string instruments on stage, including several songs where he straps on his signature Fender Strat (complete with age-old scratches, nicks and cracks) for a very entertaining blast from the past.
The sound on this DVD is superb and the band sounds much heavier live than they do on their studio albums. This should please Deep Purple and Rainbow fans like myself. However, the melody and the hypnotising beauty of this music is not lost for those who like Blackmore's Night for their softer side.
I recommend this for ALL Blackmore's Night fans, and if you've yet to hear them, this DVD would be a great starting point (especially considering the price tag isn't that much more than a regular CD). If you don't check this out, it will be your loss as a music fan."
Excellent concert. Buy it!
T. Dimock | Ventura, CA United States | 11/06/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I cannot fault any of the music or musicianship. Everyone is superb and all have a great time sharing their music with the audience. When the Geyers join in at the end of "The Clock Ticks On" it is truly goose-bump time. My only nit-picking complaints have to do with the the production. First, Ritchie is on the right side of the stage (audience perspective), Candice is center, the drummer behind her, and everyone else is cramped together on stage left. That makes it really difficult to get good camera shots of the rest of the band. We hardly see more than a few moments of the Sisters of the Moon, and Tudor Rose gets no close-up shots even during her amazing solos. Gripe number two is the frequent switching from camera to camera with some scenes lasting barely a second, and again the Sisters get little screen time even during their solos at the front of the stage. Gripe three are the compression artifacts which are most obvious during red-lit scenes and some pixelization during fast moving scenes. The extras on disc one should have been put on disc 2 to give the concert more "room". Like a previous reviewer, I prefer the production quality of the DVD sampler that comes with the Romantic Collection.
These gripes aside, Castles & Dreams still gets five stars because it is just so enjoyable to hear and see. Highly recommended."
I was mesmerized through the whole performance.
Rykre | Carson City, Nevada | 03/25/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This concert concept is fantastic. Ritchie Blackmore and his beautiful wife Candice Night, and various other band members, performing live on the hindside of a castle in Germany with the audience filling the courtyard. Most of the audience is dressed in classic Renaissance attire. A beautiful touch for this unique show.
I rented this DVD on a whim and both a friend of mine, and I, were blown away by this concert. The 5.1 sound quality is fabulous. Watching the various guitars and instruments being played by Ritchie Blackmore and watching his beautiful wife Candice singing all the songs and interacting so well with the audience is such a treat. It was like going back in time to the days of the old world with castles, maidens, and the overall Rainaissance Faire. I wish I were there.
I've listened to some songs from Blackmore's Night, but it's the live performance that really captured my heart. This is a double DVD. The concert performance is over two hours, and the second DVD is a bunch of various videos, cameos, and various episodes of following Ritchie, Candice and the band popping in little shops and venues doing raw performances to entertain unsuspecting patrons that just happened to be there. This gives even more to their charm because it is their interaction with people that make you just love this couple all the more.
Ritchie, never mind the Deep Purple/Rainbow fans who criticize your change in your musical career. I admire you for being brave enough to follow your dream. And Candice, you are absolutely beautiful, and you have a beautiful voice. And I can see that you also have a beautiful heart. Good luck to you both.
It would be great if Blackmore's Night and the Strawbs would tour together. I think it would be a great show!
Steven Jobe | Indiana | 10/13/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"You get excellent audio. You get excellent video. You get an excellent performance by all. As any Blackmore fan knows, Blackmore strives for perfection in all his endeavors and this latest project delivers just what you expect, (Excellence!).
A feature that I like is that you can elect to have the lyrics displayed while the songs are being sung. It works quite well.
This two dvd project is loaded with studio videos and documentaries along with a live concert at a castle in Germany. Almost anything you can think of is packed into these disks.
Blackmore fans know that getting to see Blackmore's Night live in the States is a rarity, so this dvd is a good substitute while we "Yankees" wait anxiously for the real thing to show up at an more accessible venue.
Bottom line, if you love Blackmore's Night, you WILL own the Castles and Dreams dvd and you'll love it."
The next best thing to being there....
John J. Toutant | Southern New Jersey, USA | 03/19/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Blackmore's Night -- Castles & Dreams" is an amazingly well-produced look into a truly unique musical act. Mr. Blackmore is known to legions of Rock fans as the gifted guitarist from several incarnations of the now-legendary Deep Purple, as well as the almost equally well-known Rainbow. In recent years Ritchie has donned tunic, hose, feathered cap, and suede boots to join his beautiful and talented partner, Candice Night, along with a hardy band of like-minded musicians, to make lovely Medieval- and Renaissance-inspired music with "Blackmore's Night".
"Castles & Dreams" is a two-DVD set that follows the band on one of its German Castle Tours, with high-quality video and sound footage of their enchanting performances. The second disc features behind-the-scenes looks at the band members, music videos, a number of previously-aired television productions featuring BN, and an educational overview of the frankly staggering amount of work that goes into concert production, especially when done within the walls of picturesque German castles.
If you've never seen Ritchie, Candice, and friends making their on-stage magic, I highly recommend this one-of-a-kind look at the innovative and fascinating musical phenomenon that is Blackmore's Night. "