metal talk
Type band name, album name, artists name etc here...
Search all our articles by typing band name, album name, artists name etc here...
metal talk

HOLY DIVER (Deluxe Re-issue)


taurus trakker

Dio's re-issue of his debut masterpiece shamefully got overlooked by us reviewers at MetalTalk headquarters, simply because we were too busy throwing devil horns in the air whilst listening to it that one forgot to put pen to paper. This is such a timeless classic that belongs in any right thinking Metal fan's collection and is well worthy of your investigation if you already haven't done so.

This was the album where Ronnie James Dio, the little man with the big voice, could stand up and shout on his own merits. After first making a name for himself fronting the band Elf, it was Ritchie Blackmore who brought the vocalist to the world's attention by inviting him to join his new band Rainbow after Blackmore had decided he had had enough of Deep Purple.

Article continues below...

Dio sang on three albums for Rainbow between 1975-78 with 'Rainbow Rising' being hailed as the pioneer for neo-classical rock. With Blackmore wanting to push Rainbow into a more commercial route a golden opportunity arose for Dio to join Black Sabbath after they had had enough of Ozzy Osbourne's antics.

Released in 1980 'Heaven And Hell' alienated some Sabbath fans at first but went on to be one of Black Sabbath's most successful albums, paving a new direction for the band closely followed by 'Mob Rules' a year later.

However during the mixing of the live double album 'Live Evil' things started to turn drastically sour between original members Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler who accused Ronnie James Dio of entering the studio during the night and turning up the volume for his vocals and that of the drumming by Vinnie Appice, which resulted in Dio leaving Sabbath and taking Appice with him.

So in late 82 Dio went about forming a new band, calling in his old buddy from his time in Rainbow, Scotsman Jimmy Bain, to join on bass. Completing the line up was Jake E Lee who only stayed around for the demo process but ironically jumped ship to replace the sadly departed Randy Rhoads in Ozzy Osbourne's band in time to record 'Bark At The Moon'. Lee claims he wrote the main riff for 'Don't Talk To Strangers' for these sessions and it is very familiar to the riff he used for the 'Bark At The Moon' title track.

Dio's greatest find to replace Lee was in young Vivian Campbell from the Northern Ireland NWOBHM band Sweet Savage. Campbell was later tamed in Def Leppard.

Together, as a unit, the chemistry between the four was an explosion of Heavy Metal with sparks flying from every direction. With Dio's rip roaring lung breaking vocals, Campbell's Metal on Metal screeching licks and a very solid rhythm from Bain and Appice who never sounded better than on this album.

The few keyboards that were added were done by Dio and Bain with German Claude Schnell joining the band for the tour.

Released in May 83 'Holy Diver' gained immense critical acclaim and the fans soon followed suit keeping the album in the British charts for almost four months with the American market picking up on the album after MTV routinely played the commercial sounding video for 'Rainbow In The Dark'.

The album is a ballsy loud 'n proud exponent of Heavy Metal at it's very finest, full of classics from start to finish.

Opener 'Stand Up And Shout' rips your speakers apart while the title track 'Holy Diver' has gone on to be a classic in it's own right. 'Don't Talk To Strangers' was an all time favourite track from the much missed and loveable Radio 1 DJ Alan 'Fluff' Freeman.

When CD's were first brought onto the market 'Holy Diver' was the first ever CD that I bought and I still own it to this day.

This album is a masterpiece of work and is very much text book Metal for future generations to learn from.

With this deluxe re-issue comes a bonus disc which includes 'Evil Eyes', originally released on the B-side of the 'Holy Diver' single and is far superior to the re-recorded version that appeared on the follow up album 'The Last In Line' and as far as I'm aware it is the first time it has been available on CD worldwide.

There are live recordings of 'Stand Up And Shout' and 'Straight Through The Heart'. These were recorded at Castle Donington and were originally on the B-side of the twelve inch single of 'Rainbow In The Dark'. Plus there are some tracks that first appeared on the King Biscuit Flower Hour in the US but were actually recorded on the opening night of the British Tour at the Manchester Apollo.

With informative sleeve notes from Malcolm Dome, this is the definitive version to have.

Ronnie James Dio is sadly no longer with us but with work like this he will forever be immortalized in the world of Metal.

God bless Dio.

If you would like to donate to The Ronnie James Dio Stand Up And Shout Cancer Fund, you can do so by clicking here.




Wacken Winter Nights 2018 takes place between February 23rd and 25th 2018 and the great news is that you can now experience a full-on, top class German Metal Festival easily and affordably.

It only takes an hour to fly to Hamburg from London and we've had longer journeys than that within the capital and they were certainly more expensive than the £33 air ticket that just appeared in our 'flights to Wacken Winter Nights' search.


Wacken Winter Nights is organised by the same team who are responsible for the world's greatest Metal festival, Wacken-Open-Air and the 2018 bill includes Skyclad, Orphaned Land, Elvenking, Finntroll, Grave Digger, Aeverium, Comes Vagantes, Coppelius, Corvus Corax, Die Pressgëng, Elvellon, Heimataerde, Hell-O-Matic, Ignis Fatuu, Ingrimm, Irdorath, Johnny Deathshadow, Krayenzeit, Letzte Instanz, Mr Hurley und die Pulveraffen, Pampatut, Pat Razket, Schandmaul, Sündenrausch, The Aberlour's, The Moon And The Nightspirit, Torfrock, Visions Of Atlantis, Vroudenspil, Wind Rose and more.

Besides this rich billing of superb Metal bands, there is so much more to see in the festival area including the medieval market and also the walking acts and jugglers you will meet at the theme worlds, including Robert Blake, three-time World Cup winner of street magic.

Wacken Winter Nights is something not to be missed and you can check out the amazing ticket and accommodation prices right here.

We just priced up the whole four day trip with hotels, flights, shuttles and festival tickets for less than £300 and we don't think you will get a better value festival than that, anywhere.


MetalTalk recently sat down with Wacken founder and owner Thomas Jensen and that interview will be online next week and it's a fascinating insight into how Wacken originated from nothing to become the world's premiere Heavy Metal event.


Wacken 2018 takes place from 2nd to 4th August 20218 and as with Wacken Winter Nights, if you have never experienced all it has to offer, then you owe it to yourself to remedy that.

Already announced for Wacken 2018 are Judas Priest, Nightwish, Running Wild (exclusive), Arch Enemy, Dirkschneider, Doro (Special Anniversary Show), In Extremo, Sepultura, Amorphis, Amaranthe, Firewind, W.A.R., Belphegor, Mantar, Knorkator, Deserted Fear, Watain, Night Demon, Epica, Knorkator, Belphegor, Firewind, Deserted Fear and many more and we'll have more Wacken 2018 announcements during December.

As well as being the greatest Heavy Metal festival in the world, it is without a doubt the Mecca of Metal and the one thing that every single person who loves our music should have on their bucket list.

For 2018, MetalTalk have joined forces with Wacken-Open-Air to help you get to Wacken easily and inexpensively and you can peruse the ticket and travel options right here.

If you are interested in going to Wacken 2018 and have questions, please fill out the form below and we will contact you with answers to all your enquiries. You are under no obligation whatsoever by filling this form out. We won't add you to any mailing lists or send you loads of spam - all we will do is help you get to Wacken as easily and inexpensively as possible.



Your Email Address:

Travelling To Wacken From:

Your Telephone Number:

Your Enquiry:


metal talk © All written site content is copyright 2008-2017, unless otherwise stated, and is not to be used without prior permission.