1983 - Holy Diver.
1993 - Strange Highways.
1996 - Angry Machines.
2002 - Killing The Dragon.
more DIO.
way more Helter Skelter.

May 25, 1983 - 2023: 40 years of: Holy Diver.

The BLACK SABBATH musical-chair keeps on going.

After a string of "Fuck yous" in relation to pre-production events for 1982's Live Evil 2LP, the marriage abruptly ended for the UK + US double-pair. Taking drummer Vinny Appice with him, singer Ronnie James Dio was not going to let the mob rule. This newly created DIO band was now the hottest act under the sun.

Speedmetal in 1983 is fast, but not yet thrashy ...so "Stand Up And Shout". Wiping the scene with it's opening riff, ex-SWEET SAVAGE wizz-kid Vivian Campbell is the new heavymetal guitar standard ...a position that was shortly filled by Jake E. Lee, yes the same Jake E. Lee that would end up in Ozzy's band for November 83's Bark At The Moon LP.

More metal-muscle flexes on "Gipsy" and the crushing "Straight Through The Heart" sharp-shooter. Lethal metal-poison is fed with a spoon, on the keyboard-led "Rainbow In The Dark" hardrocker. Ex-THIN LIZZY and ex-RAINBOW bassist Jimmy Bain support the classic title-track "Holy Diver", an immortal laid-back power punch, tailor-made for arenarock, while the darkness of "Shame On The Night" displays a progressive approach to this bold battalion.

In the meantime, another version of BLACK SABBATH (AKA Iommi + Butler and returned Ward) was now fronted by ex-DEEP PURPLE Ian Gillan. A drunk match made in Sabbath, as they will release their high-stamina Born Again LP in early August.

40 years of Holy Diver also means 40 years of Murray, the Malocchio-yielding DIO mascot. And just like Eddie, Snaggletooth or JUDAS PRIEST's Devil Fork, Murray would grace the heavymetal landscape with pride and fan-worship worldwide.

RIAA-certified 2x Platinum, DIO was officially the man on the silver mountain, breaking eardrums and providing the scene with fantasy mid-evil times, swords, dragons and fairy-tales storylines. On and on, on and on it's Heaven And Hell ...for the DIO band. They rock and they'll harden their reputation with 1984's The Last In Line LP.


RIP Jimmy Bain (1947-2016)

Holy Diver = video
Rainbow In The Dark = video
Holy Diver = full LP
Live in Holland in 1983

October 25, 1993 - 2023: 30 years of: Strange Highways.

From Holy Diver ...to Holy One !

Fully dehumanized, Ronnie James Dio had enough with the two Brits from SABBATH. Taking drummer Vinny Appice with him (déja-vu), the rebirth of the DIO band in the hazy nineties, would mean dire consequences for the scene. And welcome aboard new modern axemen: Tracy Grijalva ...AKA Tracy G.

The thrashy fat-tone and massive drums blast-off on "Jesus, Mary & The Holy Ghost" ...a quick killer with a "21st Century Schizoid Man" vibe. Loud heavyrock is provided with "Firehead" and the mastodon of "Hollywood Black".

Still caught between heaven and hell, the build-up for "Strange Highways" drives us into a doom and gloom mix. More guitars-frets melts on "One Foot In The Grave" and "Blood From A Stone", Tracy G is the hot guy in front of the Marshalls. And always on the edge of extremities, Ronnie chooses ..."Pain" !

The DIO band is back as the wolves have been unlocked. Initially featuring Jimmy Bain, he was rapidly replaced by legend bassist Jeff Pilson. Now first in line, and almost unique unit actually performing heavymetal in 1993, the classy Computer God would return with more menacing commands on 1996's Angry Machine CD.

Strange Highways = full CD
Interview in 1994
Live at Hammersmith in 1993 = full DVD

October 15, 1996 - 2021: 25 years of: Angry Machines.

...now the first in line, in heaviness !

Doomier and gloomier, a modern Ronnie Dio is on a roll, after his BLACK SABBATH rebirth with 1992's digital divine destruction of Dehumanizer.

Solo-again with 1993's muscular Strange Highways CD, featuring new-kid Tracy Grijalva on guitar, the holy diver and his deadly devices now took a deeper and heavier take on the tumultuous nineties.

The opening track "Institutional Man" is a ton-like metal-monster of epic proportions. The giant frontman is alive and well. Right into the groovy drive of "Don't Tell The Kids", a fast molten-metal cut that sets the band, once again, as leaders of the pack.

"Stay Out Of My Mind" is a modern epic, that incorporates special-effects in the mid-part, for that extra touch of technology. High-gain crunchiness is present on the ass-kicker "Double Monday" and the sacred heart gets a facelift and street-touches on "Dying In America".

Breaking away from the 80s-clichés, gone are the rainbows in the dark and the evil eyes, as the now street cutting-edge DIO is standing tall and proud in this new scene made out of alt-rockers, groove-thrashers and deathmetalers. An updated DIO for an updated reality, all in true genuine stand up and shout heavymetal fashion.

Sadly this would be longtime drummer Vinny Appice's last collaboration. Another version of the band shall arise upon the new metallic-millennium with 2000's concept-album Magica CD.

Angry Machines = full CD
Interview in 1996
Live in Las Vegas in 1996

May 21, 2002 - 2022: 20 years of: Killing The Dragon.

Enough with the fairy-tales !

After the 2000 Magica concept-CD, Ronnie the great one, had enough of ...dragons. No more long-story lines, no more dungeons and no more wicked-spells, time for just plain raw-rocknroll. Ad dirty modernized production, fat blues-led flair and new top six-stringer Doug Aldrich.

The title-track blows the door off it's hinges as DIO slays in "Killing The Dragon". Classic-feel with a millennium edge, the man and this band never sounded so alive. More power is deployed by a "Push", fury is fueled by "Before The Fall" and hell unleashes with the nocturnal riff-o-rama of by "Better In The Dark".

More hot fret-work rips your stereo apart on the arachnid anarchy of "Along Comes A Spider", while the simply titled "Scream" and "Rock & Roll" kindly reminds us who is in charge of this ongoing rebellion.

DIO was, DIO is and DIO is forever. The Killing The Dragon CD, along strong releases by PRIMAL FEAR, MANOWAR and SYMPHONY X are some of the key-elements of the great heavymetal revival of this new monstrous strange highways metal millennium.

No intermission, as the angry machine would provide another killer with 2004's Master Of The Moon CD ...before the universal 2006 mob rules reunion.

RIP Ronald James Padavona (1942-2010)

Push = video
Killing The Dragon = full CD
Interview in 2002
Evil Or Divine: Live in New-York City = full DVD

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