Review Summary: Jorn's tribute to Dio is as solid as you would expect, and also as standard.
Jorn Lande’s newest album sees the vocalist covering Dio songs in tribute to the well-known band. Dio is one of the original pioneers of heavy metal itself, and as such, it is fitting to erect a monument to showcase the band’s massive achievement in metal. Jorn is an outstanding vocalist himself, and is as good a reason as any to listen to this album. Whenever a song is weak, Jorn breathes life into what is otherwise mediocre tracks. You would expect only the best songs to be here, but in this one Jorn picked quite a few less famous tracks (such as the last song on Dio’s Holy Diver, ‘Shame on the Night’). Selecting lesser known songs from the band’s catalogue is a bold move. It is also regrettable since some of those songs were forgettable to start with. Another interesting choice was to write an entirely new song for the album: ‘Song for Ronnie James’. The song is long-winded, but what did you expect; Jorn stuffs as much epic grandeur as he can in this song for the man who died of stomach cancer, and it works.
The album is comprised of guitars and drums, which is all that is necessary. The instruments are recorded well, but they still have that raw, earthy sound that contemporary bands often seem to lack. This is pure heavy metal, the kind that makes your sister cry, and makes your parents kick you out of the house (after that you become a drug addict). The guitars will set your mind ablaze, stab your heart thrice, cut your throat and spill out your blood – the guitars are that mind-numbingly heavy. Dare I mention the fiendish drums that will soak your lungs in a bucket of acid?
Jorn stays true to Dio’s original style in this tribute album, and it has a distinctly aged feel. Guitar solos adorn almost every track just as any rock or metal album would back in the days. Regrettably, as you could imagine, the album’s greatest weakness is the lack of anything particularly unique. Recording a tribute album is fine, but since the Jorn plays it to the book, the album can become a bit monotonous. It is difficult to retain interest long enough to stay seated down and listen to the entire album.
Dio is a great tribute to the said band, and nothing more. Songs are heavy, sung well, and recorded well – what more could you ask for. If you need an album that is reminiscent of the days of classic metal, look no further. Also, if you are itching to hear a good and contemporary spin on classic Dio material, this is it. It may bring zero ideas to the table, but Dio is an album that any metal or hard rock junkie should enjoy.
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