Jorn – Dio (2010, Frontiers Records)

  1. Song For Ronnie James
  2. Invisible
  3. Shame On The Night
  4. Push
  5. Stand Up And Shout
  6. Don’t Talk To Strangers
  7. Lord Of The Last Day
  8. Night People
  9. Sacred Heart
  10. Sunset Superman
  11. Lonely Is The Word/Letters From Earth
  12. Kill The King
  13. Straight Through the Heart (live)
  14. Song For Ronnie James (video)

Band Lineup:
Jorn Lande – Vocals
Tor Erik Myhre – Guitars
Jgor Gianola – Guitars
Tore St Moren – Guitars
Nic Angileri – Bass
Willy Bendiksen – Drums & Percussion
Tommy Hansen – Keyboards

Producer: Tommy Hansen

Country: Norway

Total Time = 66:17

Jorn Lande
Jorn Lande MySpace page
Frontiers Records
Ronnie James Dio 

Nothing was more shocking for me than the announcement on May 16, 2010 that Ronnie James Dio, one of my all-time Heavy Metal heroes, had passed away after fighting a valiant effort against stomach cancer. I grew up listening to Dio’s music with Rainbow, Black Sabbath and Dio so the news really hit home s it reverberated around the globe. At 67 years old, one of the greatest Rock singers of all-time was gone.

About a week later came a press release from Frontiers Records announcing the new album from Jorn Lande titled DIO. It was a little shocking to see a press release of this kind so quickly after RJD’s death and it looked like a very convenient marketing ploy to capitalize on his death. Fans worldwide started to voice their criticism on message boards and forums towards Jorn Lande and Frontiers Records for what seemed like an obvious cash-in but that turned out to not be the case. Jorn Lande has always been very vocal in his admiration of and influence from Ronnie James Dio and this tribute album was started back in the Spring of 2009 with the full cooperation and blessing of Ronnie James & Wendy Dio and Niji Entertainment. Even though it was a planned release to pay tribute to his hero, Jorn took a lot of heat for announcing DIO because it was just too soon after Ronnie’s death.

DIO is a 13 song collection of one new song, ‘Song For Ronnie James’, and twelve Dio classics taken from his work in Rainbow, Black Sabbath and the Dio band. What makes this tribute record stand out is the song selection. Most tribute records feature the most obvious and famous songs in order to sell product but Jorn Lande went the extra mile in my opinion by picking out some deep tracks. Some obvious song choices would have been ‘Holy Diver’, ‘The Last In Line’, ‘Heaven & Hell’ and maybe ‘Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll’ but they aren’t here! Instead we get some deep tracks like ‘Lord Of The Last Day’ from MAGICA (2000), ‘Push’ from KILLING THE DRAGON (2002), ‘Night People’ off DREAM EVIL (1987) and a medley ‘Lonely Is The Word/Letters From Earth’ from Black Sabbath’s HEAVEN & HELL (1980) and DEHUMANIZER (1992) albums. Five of the songs come from Dio’s first album, HOLY DIVER (1983) and two come from DREAM EVIL but I was surprised that Jorn picked nothing from THE LAST IN LINE (1984).  I was also expecting at least two each from Ronnie’s days in both Rainbow and Black Sabbath but it’s great to have the focus on Dio’s solo career because it’s just as legendary as his previous works. The performances are mostly a straight rendition of the original tracks so the entire album is completely familiar…..the only difference is really Jorn’s voice, which is in top form as always. The lone original, ‘Song For Ronnie James’, is OK…..basically an average song when compared to Jorn’s original material. Most of the lyrics are song and/or album titles and it’s meant to be a tribute to the master. I can’t really fault it but it’s not really my favorite either.

Bottom Line:
Everyone knows that I can’t stand cover songs included on new albums of original material but I like tribute albums…..strange isn’t it? Aside from the questionable timing of the press release and album release, DIO is a solid tribute album with a decent song selection and excellent performances. Ronnie James Dio always insisted on high quality and Jorn Lande has learned well from his master because this is a highly listenable record and a cool overview of the legend’s career. ‘Song For Ronnie James’ isn’t the greatest original song but it’s listenable so it gets a pass. If you’re a fan of Ronnie James Dio or Jorn Lande then it’s an album worth checking out.

Favorite Songs:
The deeper tracks are the best ones. The Black Sabbath medley of ‘Lonely Is The Word/Letter From Earth’ is excellent as is the Rainbow cover ‘Kill The King’. If I had to pick the best four covers of Dio originals, I’d go with ‘Push’, ‘Sunset Superman’, ‘Sacred Heart’ and ‘Night People’…..the deep tracks!

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Comments
  1. Joel says:

    Like your review. I can’t wait to hear this album for myself. RIP Dio….

  2. [...] to Heavy Metal AddictionJorn – Dio (2010)KISS in concert at Mohegan Sun Arena (Uncasville, CT) – 8/19/10Night Ranger in concert at the [...]

  3. Metal Mark says:

    This is a decent album, but I wish the band had done a bit more with adding something to music. I liked it, but not something I’ll listen to that often.

  4. metalodyssey says:

    I can’t say enough about how much I LIKE, no, LOVE this Jorn Lande tribute to the ultra legendary Ronnie James Dio! In my honest of opinions… Jorn Lande is as incredible as they come with his “Classic” Metal vocals. Jorn Lande gets my Metal applause with “Song For Ronnie James”. He was comfortable and confident enough with his own sincerity to make this song and release it on this tribute album.

    Stone

  5. Drums says:

    I have to have this album! I also consider Ronnie James Dio as one of my heavy metal heroes. The industry should be mourning for such a great loss.

    Anyway, I have always been a fan of Jorn’s drums and percussion. I am totally looking forward to add this to my collection. Great review, thank you!

  6. This is a pretty neat album…RIP to DIO by the way…it’s sad when a rock icon dies…

  7. Rene says:

    Great tributo to DIO done by JORN. Its nice he did songs that were never big hits like NIGHT PEOPLE, PUSH or INVISIBLE and not just big hits like HOLY DIVER or RAINBOW IN THE DARK. Also the songs are played a little different then the original ones, and thats cool.

  8. Hamzadio says:

    Dio is one of my best and one of my heavy metal’ heroes his death shoked me i like all his musics from Elf till Black sabbath and dio’s band but this tribute is awsom i like jorne lande he has the same voice not exactly but the same gam and i think that jorn has proved by his first song that he is capable to be one of the bests and i prefer him in dio’s band after his death now and i wish if he continue his works in dio’s band

  9. [...] Jorn – Dio (2010): This album wasn’t without some controversy with it’s release coming quickly after Ronnie James Dio’s passing but this album was already made and ready for release when Dio passed so it was just a matter of bad timing. I’m not a fan of cover songs but I can do a tribute or covers album…..odd, isn’t it? The selling point here was the original song and video ‘Song For Ronnie James’ that was to be Jorn’s special tribute to the man who influenced him as a singer. Then the balance of the album would be Jorn and band covering different Dio songs. What made this one of the better non-studio releases was the tracklisting, Jorn went through the Dio catalogue and picked out a lot of songs that don’t normally make it into Dio’s “greatest hits”. Songs like ‘Invisible’, ‘Sunset Superman’, ‘Push’, and ‘Shame On The Night’ were all good to hear as part of the tribute instead of the usual fare like ‘The Last In Line’ and ‘Holy Diver’. [...]

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