Ronnie James Dio was a character unlike any other in the music industry. His, talent, his songwriting, his distinctive style and his compassion and personality all of which have made him a legend in the field. Ronnie James Dio - This is Your Life is not only a tribute, but a celebration of his works which have left an indelible mark on the genre. The album brings some of the biggest names in metal and some of Dio's close friends, to honor such a great, by covering some of his elusive works from; Rainbow, Black Sabbath and Dio. All proceeds from the album go to the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund.
Personally, I thought it would be rude to review an album of covers, especially because it is a tribute album. It wouldn't be fair to scrutinise the excellent work done by these artists. However, I know many of you will agree when I say each song does Dio justice, as they are all as heavy and in your face as you would hope for. There are a lot of standout performances such as Anthrax's cover of Neon Knights, Adrenaline Mob's cover of The Mob Rules, Corey Taylor's excellent vocals on Rainbow in the Dark and more surprisingly the powerful vocals from Halestrom.
The effort gone into this album is phenomenal, its not just the artists on the back of the CD that have contributed, a full list can be seen below, and they all deserve credit as dedicating your time, effort, money and resources to such a cause is worthy of credit. These tracks represent a bold statement of the love and admiration that united musicians from all eras.
- Neon Knights - Anthrax
- The Last In Line - Tenacious D
- The Mob Rules - Adrenaline Mob
- Rainbow In The Dark - Corey Taylor, Roy Mayorga, Satchel, Christian Martucci, Jason Christopher
- Straight Through The Heart - Halestorm
- Starstruck - Motörhead with Biff Byford
- The Temple Of The King - Scorpions
- Egypt (The Chains Are On) - Doro
- Holy Diver - Killswitch Engage
- Catch The Rainbow - Glenn Hughes, Simon Wright, Craig Goldy, Rudy Sarzo, Scott Warren
- I - Oni Logan, Jimmy Bain, Rowan Robertson, Brian Tichy
- Man On The Silver Mountain - Rob Halford, Vinny Appice, Doug Aldrich, Jeff Pilson, Scott Warren
- Ronnie Rising Medley (Featuring A Light In The Black, Tarot Woman, Stargazer, Kill The King) - Metallica
- This Is Your Life - Dio
- Heaven And Hell - Stryper (Japanese bonus track)
- Stand Up And Shout - Dio Disciples (Japanese bonus track)
- Buried Alive - Jasta (Digital bonus track)
I have to give a mention to the artwork, which is perfect. Pictures of Dio are printed on the inside cover including a picture of his Devil Horns, which were a legacy of Dio. I teared up when I opened the album to see these pictures, and it was even before the music started that I realised how appropriate this tribute is.
Finally, the last song and title track brings a close to a fantastic album and out of honour and respect it had to be Ronnie himself with This is Your Life from the 1996 Angry Machines album.
Horns up, in honour of a true legend. Ronnie James Dio will forever be remembered in the highest regard by fans of all rock and metal.