on 28 January 2009
Lock up the wolves for more reasons than one, is definately a high watermark for Dio, despite the ever changing line-ups after the original Dio members began to leave the band one by one after the Last in line world tour, Lock up the wolves finds Dio bringing 18year old guitar wiz Rowan Robertson to the mold, complimentary to Long time ex AC/DC Simon Wright on drums, Teddy Cook on bass and Jens Johanesson on keyboards respectively.
The results are quite simply face-melting stuff, all the songs are well crafted, many of them crammed full of memorable riffs, melodic moments, and screaming solos. Picking a best here is a diifcult task as their all so good in their own way, however personal favourates might be "wild one" "Between two hearts" and the rather creepy "Evil on queen street"
On a technical basis however most obvious is how good and clean how all the bands kit sounds, most noticibly how Rowan's guitar work seems to just glide with the songs, rather than just becoming a loud dominant force, on the downside to some longtime fans Rowan's guitar sound is distinctly much more metal than the albums before it which many could tag as hard rock.
The legend Dio as always gives a stellar, and strong vocal performance throughout.
The other members do a fantastic job in their fields also, Teddy cook provides us with a generous deep and fresher sound to the music than in the past, meanwhile Simon Wright fits in perfectly where Vinnie left-off and of course keyboardist Jons Johanesson does a great job at giving sparkle and melody to some of the more less full-on thrash assault numbers particularly "my eyes"
To summarize, Lock up the wolves delivers a rather unexpectedly good album albeit slightly forgotten in recent years, also more directly to it's favour is the diversity on offer to new fans particularly metal fans, of which may find Lock up the wolves more accessable than other Dio offerings, but if it's old school rock your after, this album also serves with excess.
Ultimatly Lock up the wolves is a fantastic album, it's creation not out of vanilla rock with intent on filling vast stadiums (although in the 80's Dio regularly did) is more true dedicated first class metal, i rate this album personally very highly indeed, with pop outtakes such as "shoot shoot" nowhere to be seen, is exactly why iv given this album five stars which is nothing short of the masterpeace it is.
on 3 June 2010
This album marked a change of direction for Dio, with several members who wrote songs on the album - including long time members Jimmy Bain and Vinny Appice not taking part on the album.
Ronnie James Dio was a lone hand, and drafted in Rowan Robertson and Teddy Cook, Jens Johannsson, and asked to guest at the time was then AC/DC drummer Simon Wright.
Simon decided to join the band during the recording of this album - and was the drummer in the group again up until Ronnie's untimely death.
Lock up the Wolves starts with the speedy rock of Wild One - Wright's drums blazing away proving that he wasn't just a sub-standard substitute for Phil Rudd, with some nice licks from Robertson and a more aggressive vocal technique from Ronnie - the first signs of what was to come during the 90's.
There are the usual trademarks of fantastic lyrics, great melodies and passionate vocals - but the album itself isn't perfect, with fillers such as Night Music, Walk on Water, Why Are They Watching Me, Twisted and My Eyes being slightly below par - but make no mistake, Lock up the Wolves is still a solid album.
There's also the killer songs - the heavy rock of Hey Angel, the obligatory Dio ballad of Between Two Hearts, the terrific blues jam of Evil on Queen Street (Wright and Cook are superb here), the inspired classic Dio sound of Born on the Sun, and of course, there's the title track - an epic 8.30 minute monster(possibly the longest track Dio recorded as a band) - a sprawling track with good keyboards, a powerful vocal from Ronnie, and some deft guitar work from Robertson (I love how he makes the guitars howl on the track - very apt).
With songs of this quality on the album, it was a surprise that Ronnie James Dio broke up the band to rejoin Black Sabbath after a chance meeting with Geezer Butler - and it seems to be a sadly forgotten album, but Lock Up the Wolves is good, solid, traditional heavy metal in the RJD mould - and that's exactly how it should be.
on 20 October 2004
The day was August 12th 2004. The location was the Birmingham Carling Acadamy. The band was Dio. I was at the front of the stage barely two metres away from the man himself. After two solid hours of non-stop classics from almost all of his albums plus the hummbling expearience of touching the hand of God, there was no doubt left in my mind. Ronnie James Dio is the king, the massiah and the ultimate saviour of Heavy Metal Rock n' Roll.
I bought Lock up the Wolves for two main reasons. One was for the title track, truely one of the greatest Dio tracks (Yes that includes any song from Holy Diver and the Last in Line) And the second reason was actually because the cover art is the coolest (The cover art for Angry Machines is second in my poll)
I may have bought the album for my favourite track, but believe me, once you place this classic in your CD player you will hear undoubtedly some of the best songs of Dio's career. I will simply say that the best songs are tracks 1-11. In short, every single one. Each song is a testiment to Dio's genius and offers yet more proof that no one even come close to his style of song writing.
If you buy this album there is no chance of you feeling in any way disappointed with the tracks, it is perfect and sets the pace for his other two must have (and highly under rated) studio albums Strange Highways and the fantastic Angry Machines.
As a true Dio fan I have never heared an album I didn't like but this stands out above the rest as a masterpiece of all things Ronnie James Dio.
on 6 September 2004
In my opinion, anyone who is a fan of heavy rock/ old school metal, should definately check this album out, it's certainly my favourite album. Every track kicks ass and the production is killer. The album has a fantastic dark & slightly bluesy feel to it, which in my opinion makes it stand out from any other album he has done. There's a good mixture of slow and moody tracks and faster metal classics. The guitar work is superb, especially when you consider the guitarist was only 17 at the time!
The vocals, as allways with Dio's material, are powerful and beautifully delivered. The lyrics are much the same as his other stuff & if you're familiar with DIO you'll know what I mean. But then again, what do you expect.
I play this album at least once a month and it is definately worth any amount of money asked for it!
on 7 December 2003
One word - WOW!
This was one of the first heavy metal discs I ever bought, and I can honestly say that it has changed my life. Hardly a day goes by when I don't slip this little gem into the CD player and fire up the old air guitar! Packed with crunchy riffs, solid drumming and out-of-this-world vocals, this is pure aural delight.
The cool tracks:
Born On The Sun
Between Two Hearts
Lock Up The Wolves
Evil On Queen Street
Walk On Water
Why Are They Watching Me
So, even though not every track sets the world on fire, the ones that do more than make up for the duffs. I've grown to love and cherish this disc. It opened my eyes, not only to the magical world of Ronnie James Dio, but to heavy metal in general.
Apart from Led Zeppelin's "How The West Was Won", I would say that this is my favourite CD.
on 15 March 2014
Lock Up The Wolves, if i remember rightly, got a lot of mixed reviews, but i'm on like it side,
With some great vocals buy Ronnie James Dio, some stunning guitar work by Rowan Robertson, who was only 18 years old at the the time! a really catchy single Hey Angel, the very BLACK SABBATH feel of Evil On Queen Street, and the really in your face Walk On Water, the only downside about the album is that some of the tracks could have been a little shorter especially the title track, and maybe a couple of fillers also, the reason i give this album "4 Stars not 3" is because there are some fantastic songs on this album which outway the fair songs, and the way Ronnie James Dio sings on this album you knew it was only a matter of time before he rejoined BLACK SABBATH.
For the person who wanted DIO to be a little bit more heavy than it's "4 studio predecessors, this could be it.
on 14 August 2014
great voice good lyricist and quite excellent guitar playing.One of DIO's best album
on 28 September 2010
listened to the album none stop since i bought it excellent Dio at his best
on 22 August 2015
Another great collection from the brilliant "little master" with a different line-up of musicians, but still excellent. Ronnie James Dio is sadly missed, but there is so much fantastic recorded material of his to last forever for all his devotees.
on 23 April 2013
This item was dispatched promptly and arrived in good time, exactly as it was described in the listing. Overall, I was very pleased.