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.
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