Our Score: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Ronnie James Dio is one of the most beloved figures in rock history. His gifts, both as a singer and songwriter, are instantly recognizable, whether he was with Rainbow, Black Sabbath, Heaven & Hell, or leading Dio. Sadly, Dio lost his battle with stomach cancer in 2010, but his towering voice and legacy live on. To celebrate one of rock’s most powerful voices, an all-star group of his friends and fans recorded 13 of their favorite tracks for a tribute album that will raise funds for the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund (diocancerfund.org). Produced by his longtime manager and wife Wendy Dio, the album includes contributions by such metal heavyweights as Metallica, Motörhead and Anthrax, as well as appearances by many of the musicians who performed with Dio over the years.
Just the lineup alone with have metal heads clamoring to get their hands on this album. Everyone from Rob Halford and Glenn Hughes to Tenacious D and Killswitch Engage are here covering some of the most legendary songs in heavy metal. The thing I think I liked most about this release is that all the songs were performed in the same vain as the originals. That’s something you don’t find too often in tribute records as a lot of times you get re-workings of the original material which rarely lives up to the original. This was the complete opposite as each of the 13 tracks are a fitting salute to the original recording. Anthrax’s cover of “Neon Lights” is an explosive opening track which gives ways to solid performances of “The Last in Line” by Tenacious D, Straight Through the Heart by Halestorm and the always entertaining Killswitch Engage cover of “Holy Diver. However the real gems come in the way of the collaboration pieces. Corey Taylor and company do an amazing cover of “Rainbow In the Dark” while Rob Halford lends his soaring vocals to “Man on the Silver Mountain”, Metallica, A Light In The Black, Tarot Woman, Stargazer, Kill The King all join forces for the “Ronnie Rising Medley” which is something you definitely won’t want to miss.
“Ronnie James Dio- This is Your Life” has all the classic Dio songs we know and love but with amped up performances by some of today’s top metal artists and with Wendy Dio at the production helm each track takes on a life of its own blending both the new and old. Whether you’re a Dio fan from way back or a newer fan of one of the artists who appear on the album definitely pick this release up as not only will you be getting some really great music you will also be helping out a really great cause.
1.) Neon Lights- Anthrax
2.) The Last in Line- Tenacious D
3.) The Mob Rules- Adrenaline Mob
4.) Rainbow In the Dark- Corey Taylor, Roy Mayorga, Satchel, Chrisitian Martucci, Jason Christopher
5.) Straight Through the Heart- Halestorm
6.) Starstruck- Motorhead w/ Biff Byford
7.) Temple of the King- Scorpions
8.) Egypt – (The Chains Are On)- Doro
9.) Holy Diver- Killswitch Engage
10.) Catch the Rainbow- Glenn Hughes, Simon Wright, Craig Goldy, Rudy Sarzo, Scott Warren
11.) I- Oni Logan, Jimmy Bain, Rowan Robertson, Brian Tichy
12.) Man on the Silver Mountain- Rob Halford, Vinny Appice, Doug Aldrich, Jeff Pilson, Scott Warren
13.) Ronnie Rising Medley- Metallica, A Light In The Black, Tarot Woman, Stargazer, Kill The King
14.) This is Your Life- Dio