Manchester Attack

Dio Unleashes Live Album, Makes Acting Debut

One of the most instantly recognizable voices in heavy metal, Ronnie James Dio, has issued a new concert album that focuses on one of his classic works, "Holy Diver: Live."

One of the most instantly recognizable voices in heavy metal, Ronnie James Dio, has issued a new concert album that focuses on one of his classic works, "Holy Diver: Live." The performance will also arrive on DVD May 30 via Eagle Rock.

After coming to prominence fronting Rainbow and replacing Ozzy Osbourne in Black Sabbath, the singer formed his own outfit, Dio. "Holy Diver," his 1983 solo debut, is still held in high regard by headbangers worldwide.

"We had been asked to do the entire presentation of the album by an agent of ours in England," Dio tells Billboard.com. "It was at the Astoria Theater in London. It was a great show, and we wanted to capture it, because I don't think we'll ever do that again."

In addition to such Dio classics as the album's title track and "Rainbow in the Dark," such rarely played selections as Rainbow's "Tarot Woman" and "Gates of Babylon," as well as Sabbath's "Sign of the Southern Cross," were included.

Dio confirms rumors about collaborating once more with Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi. "There's a box set that's going to be released, called 'Black Sabbath: The Dio Years.' The proposal was to write a couple of songs to be included," he says. "I have gotten together with Tony -- we worked together for about a week in England. It went very well."

Another rumor that comes up often in metal circles is a beckoning Rainbow reunion. "The beauty of that is that people still care after all these years," Dio says. "That's cool, but I've tried to say 'No' as many times as I possibly could. If there is a Rainbow reunion it will not include me."

The artist will dabble in a new medium in November when he stars in the long-awaited Tenacious D film "The Pick of Destiny." He reveals, "I got to play myself, which was not much of a stretch. It's a tried and true part of a young rebellious rock kid's life, in that his father hates the music that he likes. In the scene, [Jack Black's character] is 10 or 12. His father comes in and rails at him and slams the door. On the back of the door is a big poster of me. He starts singing to the poster: 'Dio, tell me what I should do?' And I come alive off the poster, sing a song and reply to him."

As if his plate wasn't full enough, Dio will begin work on a new studio album this summer. "I'd like to make it a quicker album -- our last album was more medium tempo," he says. "I always hear everybody gripe and moan about that, so I think we'll go for some fast ones this time. That's the plan, but knowing me, I'll probably end up in the doldrums, and you'll have a lot of slow things on it." The yet-to-be-titled set should arrive in early 2007.