Older Concert Reviews


Heart of Steel: Concert Reviews

Ronnie James Dio
Kulturbolaget, Malmö, Sweden September 8, 2002

Review and pictures by Anders Sandvall


What is to be said about Mr. Dio that hasn't been told before. He is still magical and his voice is vintage. The quality becomes better and better every year and as stage-personality he cannot be beaten.

Dio has toured with his band in the US during the summer together with Deep Purple and Scorpions (and he's now finishing up a US tour with HammerFall in December 2002). Now it is time for Europe to participate in the shouts and applause of the new tour. Dio brings the very strong record “Killing the Dragon” for which he supports. Yesterday the tour reached Sweden and Malmö and the club was totally sold out (750 persons). The expectations were high and Dio came up to the expectations, 100% due to his long experience of playing live. The band is still intact from the record “Killing the Dragon” although he has changed members in his band many times through the years.

Dio-lead vocals
Jimmy Bain-bass
Simon Wright-drums
Doug Aldrich-guitar
Scott Warren-keyboards

Good points in the show:

The guitar player Doug is a good find and Simon for the first time on drums impressed a lot. Old Jimmy playing bass is back and was in very good shape. No signs of exhaustion what so ever in the band. The sound was eminent. He plays real classic hard rock from the eighties. As always, very good.

Downfalls in the show:

The instrumental solos from Doug and Simon were too long and made the show lose its pace. Strange set list. I had wished more classic songs. Dio has a big catalogue to choose from. Only two encores! Pretty skimpy!

Dio played for one hour and thirty five minutes and the club was extremely hot and sweaty and the audience was in a festive atmosphere. The band started with the title track from the new album. Then Dio exposed his classics mixed with new material. He only gave us three songs from his new record, the title track, “Push” and “Rock ‘n’ Roll” (here Dio invited us to sing-along). From the former record MAGICA he played two songs “Lord of the last day” that went in to “Fever dreams” and then classics were on the agenda like “Stand up and shout”, ”Egypt”, ”Don’t talk to strangers”, ”Last in line” and “Holy diver”.

Dio has a strong voice and it just improves all the time in contrast to other old hard rock singers who should have quit a long time ago. He has also a tremendous stage-presence. He looks onto the people near the stage and it looks like if he sang for them only. He is thankful to the audience that they are there and he says thank you all the time. He works hard to get the audience in the right mood.

Dio had to sing songs from his days in Black Sabbath/Rainbow, ”Mob Rules” and “Heaven and Hell”. Big favorites BUT he skipped the sing-along in the beginning. He has always had this feature. It is like a icon and I missed it a lot. He played “Man on the silver Mountain” which continued into “Long live rock ‘n’ roll” and the audience was invited to sing with him. As always Dio tells the rules for our singing.

It was spontaneous singing in many of the songs from a very happy audience. I will always like Dio.

The few photos depend on the fact that flash photos weren’t allowed during the concert. You are only permitted to take photos during the first three songs and this restriction is irritating!!!!

Thanks to Dio’s manager for his help.

Thanks to Suzan Kverh at Playgroundmusic Sweden for the help

Set list:
Killing the dragon
Drum solo
Stand up and shout
Rock -n- roll
Don’t talk to strangers
Man on the sliver Mountain
Guitar solo
Long live R-N-R
Lord of the last day
Fever dreams
Mob rules
Holy diver
Heaven and hell (encore)
Last in line (encore)