Last in Line, Featuring Ex-Dio Members, Debut New Song ‘Martyr’
When Last in Line formed, the intent was to celebrate the work on Ronnie James Dio by reuniting the members of the original lineup joined by singer Andrew Freeman formerly of Hurricane and Lynch Mob. After playing shows as a tribute to the late legend, the band decided to move forward and create new music in vein of the first three Dio albums. Coming off their debut record Heavy Crown, "Martyr" seizes the energy of the outfit.
Spearheaded by guitarist Vivian Campbell, drummer Vinny Appice and bassist Jimmy Bain — keyboardist Claude Schnell departed in November — Last in Line are keeping things rolling. "Martyr" starts off with a drum fill before Campbell's familiar lead riffing takes control. A speedy and chunky rhythm gives off the feel of the early Dio material and though it is initially difficult to overcome the idea of this music without Ronnie James Dio, Freeman's voice surely wins over the song, bringing the spirit of Ronnie's performances into the present.
"Martyr" is the second single to be released, with the first being "Devil In Me" for which the band also shot a video. Heavy Crown was produced by Jeff Pilson, who sporadically played bass in the Dio band, laying down the low end on Strange Highways, Angry Machines and the last Dio album, Master of the Moon.
Campbell commented on the recording sessions, stating, "When we first got together as the Last in Line lineup, our ambition at that time didn't extend to writing and recording any new music, but when we were offered the opportunity to do so by Frontiers, we decided to enter the studio to write this new album in the very same spirit as we did the Holy Diver album. Back in 1982, Ronnie, Vinny, Jimmy and I went into Sound City studios to kick around ideas and riffs, and about six weeks later we started laying down the tracks for what was to become the Holy Diver album."
Heavy Crown will be out Feb. 19, 2016 on Frontiers.
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