Dio – The Studio Album Collection

CD:
Dio

Reviewed by:
Rating:
5
On March 24, 2020
Last modified:March 24, 2020

Summary:

Four often overlooked albums from the legendary Ronnie James Dio get reissued in a remastered form with a load of bonus material

Four Dio albums are being re-released in a newly remastered form. The albums are the studio albums from 1996 to 2004 – Angry Machines (1996), Magica (2000), Killing The Dragon (2002), and Master Of The Moon (2004).

The albums have been out of print for a long time so for many fans this is probably their first chance to get these albums, especially since Dio’s popularity hasn’t waned at all in the years since his death. As well as being remastered, the CD releases also include some rare or previously unreleased material – either live or studio tracks, and the artwork has been updated by Dio designer Marc Sasso.

The 180gram black vinyl includes the original tracklistings and is available as a Limited Edition first run with an LP-sized Lenticular album art print. As a special bonus, the Magica 2LP also contains a 7” single featuring ‘Electra’, the only known completed track from the planned Magica 2 album.

The CD versions of each album are in mediabook packaging along with a second disc featuring rare and unreleased bonus material. In addition to rare studio tracks ‘Electra’ (included on Magica), and ‘Prisoner Of Paradise’ (included on Master Of The Moon), each bonus disc includes a selection of both rare or never before released live tracks from the accompanying tour for each studio release.

All bonus tracks are also available on the streaming/digital versions.

The bonus material is as follows….

Angry Machines: 12 bonus tracks recorded live on the Angry Machines tour in 1997.

Magica: The 2LP set includes a bonus 7” of studio track ‘Electra’ and the CD/digital version features 10 never released before Magica tracks performed on tour in 2001.

Killing the dragon: 6 tracks recorded live on the Killing The Dragon tour in 2002/2003.

Master Of The Moon: 5 bonus tracks recorded live on the Master Of The Moon tour in 2004/2005.

It’s an interesting starting point for Dio re-issues given that his best known albums are the earlier ones, but perhaps that’s a good reason to reissue these albums – to bring them back to a new audience. “Angry machines” saw the band taking a different direction and isn’t a popular album among Dio fans, but “Magica” was seen as a return to form, and the following two albums also went down well. A planned sequel to “Magica” was started and one song was finished – “Electra”, and that previously unreleased track is included in this re-issue. Sadly the Magica II album was never finished as Ronnie James Dio went on tour with Black Sabbath (under the “Heaven and hell” name), and then was diagnosed with cancer.

While “Angry machines” didn’t go down well with fans at the time, hearing it now it’s easier to judge it fairly. It’s actually a very good album – ok it’s not my favourite Dio album but that’s more to do with the fact that some of his other albums are simply amazing. I’ve really enjoyed listening to these four albums particularly since I hadn’t got “Killing the dragon”, and they are all great albums. I still think his first 4 or 5 albums are the best but these are still great albums that fans should listen to.
The bonus material is a great addition – a load of live tracks plus some studio tracks such as the previously unheard “Electra”.

Ronnie James Dio is one of the true greats of rock music. Nobody else can claim to have been as influential as him – after all he was in Rainbow and Black Sabbath as well as releasing his own material as Dio. Three all-time great rock bands. As such there’s a huge amount of songs out there that the fans know and love, but these albums are often overlooked and they deserve more attention.

Angry Machines

Disc 1 & LP Tracklist
1. Institutional Man
2. Don’t Tell The Kids
3. Black
4. Hunter Of The Heart
5. Stay Out Of My Mind
6. Big Sister
7. Double Monday
8. Golden Rules
9. Dying In America
10. This Is Your Life

Disc 2 – BONUS / LIVE on Angry Machines Tour 1997
1. Jesus Mary and The Holy Ghost – Straight Through The Heart
2. Don’t Talk To Strangers
3. Double Monday
4. Hunter Of The Heart
5. Holy Diver
6. Heaven and Hell
7. Long Live Rock and Roll
8. Man On The Silver Mountain
9. Rainbow In The Dark
10. The Last In Line
11. The Mob Rules
12. We Rock

Magica

Disc 1 & LP 1 Tracklist (LP 2 includes Magica Story + bonus 7”)
1. Discovery
2. Magica Theme
3. Lord Of The Last Day
4. Fever Dreams
5. Turn To Stone
6. Feed My Head
7. Eriel
8. Chalis
9. As Long As It’s Not About Love
10. Losing My Insanity
11. Otherworld
12. Magica (Reprise)
13. Lord Of the Last Day (Reprise)

Disc 2 – BONUS / Live on Magica Tour 2001
1. Discovery
2. Magica
3. Lord Of The Last Day
4. Fever Dreams
5. Eriel
6. Chalis
7. Losing My Insanity
8. Otherworld
9. Electra – Studio Track
10. Magica Story – Studio/Spoken Word 18:26

Killing The Dragon

Disc 1 & LP Tracklist
1. Killing The Dragon
2. Along Comes A Spider
3. Scream
4. Better In The Dark
5. Rock and Roll
6. Push
7. Guilty
8. Throw Away Children
9. Before The Fall
10. Cold Feet

Disc 2 – BONUS / LIVE on Killing The Dragon Tour 2002/2003
1. Holy Diver
2. Heaven and Hell
3. Rock and Roll
4. I Speed At Night
5. Killing The Dragon
6. Stand Up And Shout

Master Of The Moon

Disc 1 & LP Tracklist
1. One More For The Road
2. Master Of The Moon
3. The End Of The World
4. Shivers
5. The Man Who Would Be King
6. The Eyes
7. Living The Lie
8. I Am
9. Death By Love
10. In Dreams

Disc 2 – Bonus / Live on Master Of The Moon Tour 2004/2005
1. Heaven and Hell
2. Rainbow In The Dark
3. Rock and Roll Children
4. The Eyes
5. Prisoner Of Paradise – Studio Track

Four often overlooked albums from the legendary Ronnie James Dio get reissued in a remastered form with a load of bonus material

About Ant May

I spend half my life at gigs or festivals and the other half writing the reviews and editing photos, and somehow find time for a full time job too. Who needs sleep - I've got coffee.

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