Despite recording two hit studio albums with Black Sabbath (1980's Heaven and Hell
and 1981's The Mob Rules
) and playing throughout the world to huge crowds, Ronnie James Dio left the band in 1982-the year of his final release with Sabbath, the in-concert Live Evil
. As soon as the announcement of his departure was made official, Dio began to put together his first solo project. Joining him were former Rainbow band mate Jimmy Bain on bass, former Sabbath band mate Vinny Appice on drums, ex-Sweet Savage guitar hero Vivian Campbell, and newcomer Claude Schnell on keyboards. Holy Diver
, Dio's band debut, was issued in 1983. The album quickly became a favourite among head bangers worldwide and eventually earned the group platinum certification. The somewhat upbeat sounding "Rainbow in the Dark" was an MTV favourite, while the title track proved to be another standout. Other album highlights include the opening anthem "Stand Up and Shout," "Invisible," and "Don't Talk to Strangers." Holy Diver
proved that Dio's departure from Black Sabbath had not affected his spirits. In fact, he sounds most inspired here, aided by his new, hungry backing band
This new two-CD deluxe edition comes with a live recording made at the time, two previously never available on CD B-sides, as well as expanded booklet with notes by Malcolm Dome, and is endorsed by Ronnie’s widow Wendy.