Dio re-issues :- Holy Diver/Last In Line/Sacred Heart.






Ronnie James Dio,born as Ronald James Padavona sadly left us almost 2yrs ago on May 16th 2010.  A sad day for many of us but we will always raise the devil horns listening to  the music he left behind!  So on that note, Universal Music on March 19th this year have released Dio’s 1st 3 solo albums in deluxe  format,written after his exit from Black Sabbath in 1982. They are Holy Diver,originally released on May 25th 1983. Last In Line,on July 13th 1984 and Sacred Heart on August 8th 1985. I had all 3 albums on vinyl back in the day and was lucky to see the Dio band 3 times in 1983. Unforgettable gigs are an understatement to say the least!

Vinyl purists may turn up their noses at these releases but the remastering by Andy Pearce sounds  fantastic and as a further bonus,each album comes with a free  cd of  B-sides and live tracks from 1983/84. Also each album has an expanded booklet by reknowned journalist Malcolm Dome and are endorsed by Ronnie’s widow,Wendy Dio. The Holy Diver bonus cd has 3  B-sides + 6  fm live tracks from the King Biscuit Flower Hour radio show on 30th Oct. 1983. Last In Line bonus cd has 6 live tracks,previously available as live B-sides + 8 live tracks from the Pink Pop Festival,Holland in 1984. Sacred Heart bonus cd has 4 B-sides ( 1 studio,3 live ) + 8 tracks which made up the Intermission live e.p,originally released in 1986.

The 3 studio albums are of course classics in rock/metal history but personally it is the bonus material that makes the re-issues an essential purchase for older fans,hearing Ronnie belt the songs out with aplomb  and it gives newer fans the opportunity to hear the studio albums,originally released in an era when getting a Kerrang front cover didnt involve getting your hair straightened and having armfuls of brand new tattoos!  Holy Diver and Last In Line both achieved silver album status in the U.K and platinum status in the U.S and Sacred Heart received a gold status in the U.S.

Listening to these albums and their bonuses reminds one of how formidable a band Ronnie had with him back in the early/mid 1980’s. When he left Black Sabbath in 1982 he took drummer Vinny Appice ( brother of Carmine Appice ) with him. As well as playing on the Heaven And Hell and Mob Rules albums,Vinny  recorded some killer material with U.S guitarist Rick Derringer. On bass Ronnie recruited Jimmy Bain who was also part of the Rainbow line up with Ronnie for the  classic Rainbow album Rising in 1976 and a founder  member of Wild Horses. On guitar Ronnie chose a relative newcomer to the music scene although some nwobhm fans would know of Vivian Campbell from his  previous band,the Irish based Sweet Savage. Vivian’s tenure with the Dio band was short lived and he left in 1986,replaced by Craig Goldy.

Dio band line up :-

Ronnie James Dio- Vocals.

Vivian Campbell- Guitar.

Jimmy Bain- Bass.

Vinny Appice- Drums.

Claude Schnell- Keyboards. ( Joined for Last In Line and Sacred Heart albums ).

Holy Diver CD 1 :-

Holy Diver.

Stand Up And Shout.


Caught In The Middle.

Dont Talk To Strangers.

Straight Through The Heart.


Rainbow In The Dark.

Shame On The Night.


Holy Diver CD 2 :-

Evil Eyes- B side studio track to Holy Diver.

Stand Up And Shout-  Live B side to Rainbow In The Dark.

Straight Through The Heart- Live B side to Rainbow In The Dark.

The following tracks are from the KBFH show Oct. 30th 1983 :-

Stand Up And Shout.

Shame On The Night.

Children Of The Sea.

Holy Diver.

Rainbow In The Dark.

Man On The Silver Mountain.


Last In Line CD 1 :-

We Rock.

Last In Line.


I Speed At The Night.

One Night In The City.

Evil Eyes.


Eat Your Heart Out.

Egypt ( the chains are on ).


Last In Line CD2 :-

Stand Up And Shout- Live B side to Last In Line single.

Straight Through The Heart- Live B side to Last In Line single.

Eat Your Heart Out- Live B side to Mystery single.

Dont Talk To Strangers- Live B side to Mystery single.

Holy Diver- Live B side to We Rock.

Rainbow In The Dark- Live B side to We Rock.

The following tracks are from the Pink Pop Festival,Geleen,Holland,1984 :-

One Night In The City.

We Rock.

Holy Diver.


Heaven And Hell.

Rainbow In The Dark.

Man On The Silver Mountain.

Dont Talk To Strangers.


Sacred Heart CD1 :-

King Of Rock And Roll.

Sacred Heart.

Another Lie.

Rock N Roll Children.

Hungry For  Heaven.

Like The Beat Of A Heart.

Just Another Day.

Fallen Angels.

Shoot Shoot.


Sacred Heart CD2 :-

Hide In The Rainbow- Studio recording used on the Iron Eagle film soundtrack.

We Rock- Live B side for Rock N Roll Children.

Last In Line- Live B side for Rock N Roll Children.

Like The Beat Of A Heart- Live B side for Hungry For Heaven.

The following tracks are from the Intermission live album :-

Rainbow In The Dark.

Sacred Heart.

Time To Burn.

Rock N Roll Children.

Long Live Rock And Roll.

Man On The Silver Mountain.

We Rock.

The 1st track on CD2, the studio recording Hide In The Rainbow was also included on the  Intermission e.p to showcase new material from Craig Goldy.



I award the Dio re-issues a set in stone 10/10  m/














About Dennis Jarman

Full time downtrodden album/gig reviewer and part time rock God!