The following is a review of a concert on the Strange Highways US tour, originally posted to alt.rock-n-roll.metal.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (philip.l.schuhmann)
Subject: Dio concert, with Love/Hate & Godspeed
Date: Mon, 13 Jun 1994 16:47:50 GMT
I went to see Dio at the Stone Pony Big Top in Asbury Park, NJ on Saturday, June 11, 1994. Opening the show were Godspeed and Love/Hate. The Stone Pony Big Top is a pretty big tent structure situated adjacent to the Stone Pony club, which is very close to the ocean in central NJ.
Godspeed opened the show and had some heavy riffs, but they need a new singer in my opinion. There was no hint of melody at all and the singer was a bit, shall I say, weird. They seem to be trying to jump on the Pantera bandwagon, but they don't cut it. The riffs were nice and heavy, and good, but that was about all. Note the rare use of two bassists in the band. I don't own their album so I can't tell you what songs they played, though they did do a cover of "Sonic Reducer".
Love/Hate came next and experienced some technical problem's with Jon E. Love's guitar sound early on. But they recovered from that and some early "Dio" chants from the crowd and won over the crowd with their song quality and energy. They opened with a song off their new album "Let's Rumble", and played, I think 3 songs off of it (I don't own the new album yet). Off of the "Wasted In America" album they played "Spit", "Yucca Man" and "Tranquilizer". And off of their first album ("Blackout In The Red Room"), they played "Tumbleweed", "Fuel To Run", "Mary Jane", and also the last two songs of the show, "Why Do You Think They Call It Dope" and then "Blackout In The Red Room", which are two great songs, full of energy.
However, I must say that while I thought that Love/Hate put on a good show, I thought their performance and energy was not as good as the other time I saw them, at a club show in which they were the headliners, which occurred a little bit before their second album came out. It was also strange to see the members of Love/Hate walking around in the crowd before and after the show and nobody knowing who they were. They've put out some really excellent records, but are still unknown. I'll probably get their new album, but I doubt it can live up to their *great* debut album, which is a great record that I would recommend to anyone.
Now on to Dio. Lots of dry ice and eerie music preceded the band's entrance to the stage, and they opened with two songs off of their new album "Strange Highways". I believe the first one is called "Jesus, Mary, and the Holy Ghost", and the second was the title cut. Then they played "Don't Talk To Strangers". I'll list the set list as best I can remember at the end.
The touring band was the same as on the album, with Pilson on bass, Appice on drums and Tracy G. on guitar. RJD and the rest of the band seemed to be having a good time up there, smiling and energetically moving around, and RJD was constantly thanking the crowd and seemed pleased to be there. He mentioned that he thought the last time he had played in Asbury Park was back with Rainbow. It was a fun show, but I was surprised at the brevity of the Dio's set, which was only about 1 hour and 15 minutes in total, including the 1 encore "Rainbow In The Dark". I left right as "Rainbow..." was finishing, so I guess it is possible they did another song or two, but I doubt it. And for such a short set, I thought the solos (guitar, and then later a drum/bass solo) were too long and unnecessary.
But it was a good show, though somewhat sparsely attended - there was lots of extra room under the "Big Top". The fans were really into it tough, and I had a good time and was glad I went. Here are the songs they played I think (not in any order):
Phil Schuhmann email@example.com
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