Are there other Dio track I could have chosen? Yes.
Are there other Dio tracks as iconic as Holy Diver? Also yes.
Am I going to go full on Tenacious D in this post and give it the whole Ronnie James worship route? Take a wild flappin’ guess.
Ronnie was more than just the OTHER singer in Black Sabbath. We covered this yesterday. He was after all the voice of Rainbow In The Dark and Rainbow the band. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out he was the puppeteer behind Zippy and George at this stage (that’s a very niche 40 plus year old UK Kids TV joke, sorry if it’s not region compatible, bear with me).
What I love most about Holy Diver is the thing that everybody loves the most about Holy Diver. It’s the marching bass line ‘Doot Doodle Ohh Doodle Doot Doodle Ohh’ combined with the keyboard strains of ‘Dud Dududle Urrh’ in the background like it’s made to soundtrack some beat ’em up video game on a PS2 (Soul Blade anyone?) combined with that assured delivery like he’s a character in Lord Of The Gangs or something.
“Holy Diver! You’ve been down too long in the midnight sea, Oh what’s becomin’ of me? Ride the tiger! You can see his stripes but you know he’s clean. Oh don’t you see what I mean”
Yes Won Won, We see exactly what you mean, you army commanding goblin king. Actually I have no frikkin’ idea what he means but I like it none the less. I’m not a D&D, LOTR, RPG kind of guy. But I believe in Ronnie James Dio. He’s got IT in buckets and I’ve…
“Got shiny diamonds like the eyes of a cat in the black and blue, something is coming for you, look out”
Holy Diver is a metal anthem in a really great way. I’ve seen it unify Rock Clubs on a Saturday night where the English, Germans and Spaniards cannot communicate save for throwing up their horns or tussling for space at the bar. I’ve seen it reduce hoards of bikers to a pile of waving limbs and spilled brews. Holy Diver is an insider metal anthem. You’ll never hear it on any station that isn’t dedicated to heavy rock. You’ll never meet a causal fan.
Those who know though? They jump…
“Jump, jump on the tiger, you can feel his heart but you know he’s mean, some light can never be seen, yeah!”