23836-1 Holy Diver
Produced by Ronnie James Dio
Released on May 1983
UK CHART POSITION #13 . . . US CHART POSITION #56 . . .
GOLD RECORD (9/12/84), PLATINUM (3/21/89)
Find it at GEMM
23836-1 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

Y ou could do worse than build a metal band around singer/songwriter Ronnie James Dio -- in fact, on Holy Diver, Dio does its predecessors (Rainbow, Black Sabbath) one better. Much credit belongs to guitarist Vivian Campbell, a clean and quick guitarist of heroic proportions, and the unimpeachable rhythm section of Vinny Appice and Jimmy Bain. As a group, they’re able to communicate Dio’s melodic vision of metal with sharp teeth -- as intelligent and earnest as Dio is, it’s imperative that the songs kick ass. (The keyboards on the beginning of “Rainbow in the Dark” demonstrate the peril: without the guitars, this would sound like wimpy ‘80s metal.) The songs are at the high end of the ‘80s metal curve, with “Holy Diver,” “Invisible” and “Don’t Talk to Strangers” at the top of their class for the time (remember, people were still pumping their fists at Asia concerts in 1983). Holy Diver is a little tarnished by its association with metal’s gray area -- the post-Sabbath and pre-Anthrax period of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, which only Priest seems to have escaped -- but most metal afficianados recognize and appreciate this as a classic.

23836-1 back cover 23836-1 sleeve
23836-1 back cover 23836-1 sleeve

TRACK LISTING

  1. STAND UP AND SHOUT    (Ronnie James Dio/Jimmy Bain)    3:15
  2. HOLY DIVER    (Ronnie James Dio)    5:54
  3. GYPSY    (Ronnie James Dio/Vivian Campbell)    3:39
  4. CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE    (Ronnie James Dio/Vinny Appice/Vivian Campbell)    4:15
  5. DON'T TALK TO STRANGERS    (Ronnie James Dio)    4:53
  6. STRAIGHT THROUGH THE HEART    (Ronnie James Dio/Jimmy Bain)    4:32
  7. INVISIBLE    (Ronnie James Dio/Vinny Appice/Vivian Campbell)    5:26
  8. RAINBOW IN THE DARK    (Ronnie James Dio/Vinny Appice/Jimmy Bain/Vivian Campbell)    4:15
  9. SHAME ON THE NIGHT    (Ronnie James Dio/Vinny Appice/Jimmy Bain/Vivian Campbell)    5:20

CREDITS

RONNIE JAMES DIO -- vocals, keyboards
VINNY APPICE -- drums
JIMMY BAIN -- bass, keyboards
VIVIAN CAMPBELL -- guitar
Angelo Arcuri -- engineer
Randy Berrett -- illustration
Gene Hunter -- original art rendering
Wendy Dio -- original concept
Simon Levy/Jeri McManus -- art direction/design

return to DIO discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US May 1983 Warner Bros. LP/CS 23836 picture sleeve
UK May 1983 Vertigo LP/CS VERS/VERSC 5  
AUS'L/BRA/EUR 1983 Mercury LP 811021 picture sleeve
CAN 1983 Warner Bros. LP 92 38361  
JPN 1983 Mercury LP 25PP-87 insert
GER 1986 Mercury CD 811021  
JPN   Mercury CD PPD 3070  
US March 1988 Warner Bros. CD/CS 23836  
JPN 2002 Vertigo CD UICY-3727 24-bit digital remaster

 

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