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Heaven And Hell -Neon Nights Live At Wacken dvd


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When Heaven And Hell took the stage on the evening of July 30, 2009 at the Wacken Open Air Festival, it was incomprehensible that this was to be the group’s final tour. The band had just issued a brand-new studio album, The Devil You Know, that had hit the U.S. Top Ten, and fans were flocking to stadium-sized festival performances by the band. However, this did indeed prove to be the group’s last-ever tour, as Ronnie James Dio would pass away from stomach cancer in May 2010. A little over a year from when the aforementioned show took place comes a live dvd that documents this very same performance, entitled Neon Nights. Wisely, the majority of the track listing here is comprised of renditions of songs from Black Sabbath’s first two classic albums with Dio (1980’s Heaven and Hell and 1981’s The Mob Rules), including ‘Mob Rules’, the oft-overlooked ‘Falling Off the Edge of the World’, a nearly 20-minute version of ‘Heaven and Hell’, and ‘Neon Knights’. And rounding out the set are renditions of songs from the 1992 Dio-Sabbath release Dehumanizer (‘I’) and the aforementioned The Devil You Know (‘Bible Black’). This is an impressive performance by Heaven and Hell although the set seems a little on the short side – they play just shy of 90 minutes as headliners for an outdoor festival in Germany. The sound is really good, although the audience is almost inaudible throughout much of the show. Instead we get the crunch of Iommi’s Gibson, the pulsating greatness from Butler’s Yamaha bass, the thump from Appice’s drums and Dio’s voice, loud and proud and out front. The band is inspired and, possibly, unaware that it would be Dio’s final filmed performance. The bonus interviews are interesting, but I wish they lasted longer. When Geezer mentions that he liked recording ‘The Sign of the Southern Cross’ for 1981’s ‘Mob Rules’ long player, he talks about how he loved experimenting with different bass pedals and effects. Instead of asking Geezer to explain more about the effects, like which ones were used, interviewer Eddie Trunk moves on to his next question. Eddie is a good guy and knowledgeable, although (in the footage seen) he avoids asking anything about their musical equipment – something musicians surely would want to ask/know. They mention recording ‘Mob Rules’ for the ‘Heavy Metal’ film and soundtrack, and I so wished Trunk asked them if it definitely was Appice on drums on that early version. The drums on the movie soundtrack version sound more like the style of Bill Ward (very fluid, hard yet slightly jazzy) than that of Appice’s performance on the re-recorded song for the ‘Mob Rules’ album (Appice seemingly made it a habit of pausing for a second or half-second after doing a drum fill across his toms, before coming back into the straight rhythm of the song – the drum fills on the movie version are without any breaks).
Fans might be shocked when they learn which Black Sabbath contemporary Vinny Appice turned down for a drumming job back in 1980.

Track listing:
1. E5150
2. The Mob Rules
3. Children Of The Sea
4. I
5. Bible Black
6. Time Machine
7. Fear
8. Falling Off The Edge Of The World
9. Follow The Tears
10. Die Young
11. Heaven And Hell
12. Country Girl
13. Neon Knights
Bonus material:
14. Ronnie James Dio-interview
15. Geezer Butler-interview
16. Vinny Appice-interview
17. Tony Iommi-interview
18. Tony Iommi-tribute to Dio
19. Vinny Appice-tribute to Dio
20. Geezer Butler-tribute to Dio

Additional information


Eagle Rock Entertainment / Eagle Vision

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