Label: Niji Entertainment
Release date: October 9, 2012
The idea of writing a review for a “best of” offering seems a bit ridiculous. However, this is no ordinary album, nor is it truly a “hits” package. This is Dio, perhaps the last in line from the legendary band/singer, and another monument to his mammoth talents.
It was a devastating blow when we lost Ronnie James Dio, iconic voice of Elf, Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Heaven and Hell, and of course, Dio. He was and may always remain the quintessential rock and metal voice. Others may have had a wider range, but no one had his uniqueness. In fact he defined the word unique with his voice, and his songwriting.
The Very Beast of Dio represented the band’s first six albums and encompassed what were primarily considered the band’s true hits. The Very Beast of Dio – Vol. 2 covers the final four studio albums and some bonuses. For Dio fans that latter are reason enough to buy this disc. In all there are 17 tracks spanning Angry Machines (3 songs), Magica (4 songs), Killing The Dragon (4 songs) and Master of the Moon (4 songs).
Included here is the song “Electra” previously only available on the 2010 Tournado Box Set. Also included is one of Ronnie’s final recorded vocal performances, “Metal Will Never Die”, which he recorded as a guest appearance on the David “Rock” Feinstein album Bitten by the Beast (2010). “The Prisoner of Paradise” is also here which was a Japanese only bonus track from 2004’s Master of the Moon.
It is not merely the genius and heart of Ronnie which makes Dio such an legendary band, but also his brothers in arms who helped him create some of metal’s most mighty and majestic works. On this album alone legendary guitarists Doug Aldrich (Whitesnake, Lion) and Craig Goldy (Rough Cutt, Guiffria) set the tone, along with bassists Rudy Sarzo (Quiet Riot, Ozzy, Blue Oyster Cult, Whitesnake, Queensrÿche), Jimmy Bain (Rainbow) and Jeff Pilson (Dokken, Foreigner) who kept the rhythm with drummers Vinnie Appice (Kill Devil Hill, Black Sabbath) and Simon Wright (AC/DC, Rhino Bucket). For 17 years, keyboardist Scott Warren brought Dio‘s atmospheric shadows to life. Ronnie was the King and he had the magic to make Princes of young prodigies. All of their combined talents resonate throughout The Very Beast of Dio – Vol. 2.
For the casual fan, this album may not be as inspired as its predecessor, but for long time Dio and Ronnie fans, this album is a nice addition to the collection. For the digital denizens, one must certainly pick up the unreleased bonus tracks, in particular, “Metal Will Never Die”. The album also includes liner notes by Eddie Trunk.
The Very Beast Of Dio Vol. 2:
01. Killing the Dragon
03. The Eyes
04. Along Comes A Spider
05. Better In The Dark
06. Fever Dreams
08. Feed My Head
10. Hunter Of The Heart (live)
11. One More For The Road
12. Lord Of The Last Day
13. Electra (bonus track)
14. As Long As It’s Not About Love
15. This Is Your Life
16. Metal Will Never Die (bonus track)
17. Prisoner Of Paradise (bonus track)