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Review: Dio - Killing The Dragon
Killing The Dragon

Label: Spitfire Records
Year released: 2002
Duration: 45:10
Tracks: 10
Genre: Heavy Metal

Rating: 5/5

Review online: June 11, 2002
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers Rating
Killing The Dragon

Rated 4.17/5 (83.33%) (36 Votes)

Whoa... I've been in a heavy metal mood lately and for some reason I had put off listening to this new album. Big mistake. Or maybe the big mistake is actually starting listening to it, because now I can't get it out of my CD player. Damn... Where can I start? A particularity of this album is that if it had been released in, say, the mid-80s, it would have sounded right in its place. Yet, in 2002, it doesn't sound just like some attempt at grabbing older metalheads using nostalgia - it sounds fresh, not dated at all. Seems to me like this is a classic to be, or at the very least an album I'll listen to and still enjoy 20 years from now. OK, it looks like I wrote the conclusion as the introduction. Ahem.

"Killing the Dragon" sounds like your classic Dio album - very well-executed heavy metal music with Ronnie James Dio's great vocals - the guy is now over 60 and can put people half his age to shame. An inspiration for heavy metal's timelessness as far as I'm concerned. There I'm doing it again. Anyway, back to the music. I don't know if it's my current mood for traditional heavy metal, but I could not find a song in here that I could consider even remotely weak, although I do have some favourites. The title track is a great rocking opener, followed by the excellent "Along Comes A Spider". "Better In The Dark", "Push", "Before the Fall" and "Cold Feet" are other favourites, all good, catchy rockers with excellent melodies and guitar solos. The keyboards on "Before the Fall" have this 70s vibe that pretty much threw me back in time 30 years, quite a good mix with the more modern sound of the other instruments. "Cold Feet" is simply driving me nuts because both the melodies remind me of something I heard years ago but I can't remember what the hell it is. Great song nonetheless. The only song on here that qualify as a ballad is the very good "Throw Away Children", while a couple of other songs start slowly only to end up rocking as hard as the rest of the album.

Not long ago I heard people mention that Dio should retire, but with such an excellent release I don't see any reason why he should. Great vocals, great music, great album. I may sound like a die hard fan of Dio, but it's not the case, I like some of his albums but I don't even have them all. This album just happens to rule. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

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