Inferno: Last in Live

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Ronnie James Dio never sounded more inspired than he does on Inferno: Last in Live, an outstanding two-CD set recorded live on his band's world tour of 1996-1997. The goth metal singer was always known for going that extra mile on-stage, and he does exactly that with an excellent band that includes drummer Vinny Appice, guitarist Tracy G, bassist Larry Dennison, and keyboardist Scott Warren. The material falls into three main categories: 1970s classics from his years with Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow ("The Man on the Silver Mountain," "Long Live Rock & Roll"), gems from his three years with Black Sabbath ("Heaven and Hell," "The Mob Rules"), and songs he had recorded with his own band, Dio, since 1983 ("Rainbow in the Dark," "Don't Talk to Strangers," "Holy Diver," "The Last in Line"). As blistering as much of the material is, Inferno points to the fact that the singer has always been an expert when it comes to combining rich melodies with brute force. Inferno is an essential release that no metalhead should be without.

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