DIO Disciples – Wolverhampton Slade Rooms

Posted on 18 June 2011 by Mizzle

“We rock You!”

A Wednesday night in Wolverhampton, streets are deserted pubs are empty! Infact the British summer time is as depressing as the economy that is unless you’re a punter turning up for tonight’s gig at the Slade Rooms.

You would be forgiven for thinking this is just another tribute act or perhaps another band booked just to cover the under sale of Smokey bacon crisps.

The Midlands was always the back yard of industry, pioneering grimey units tucked away in back streets with the terraced houses unaware of what was being created.  The relentless thud of the steel machines hammering away and red hot furnaces burning red into the night sky……

That’s exactly what was happening tonight, a chorus of steel and fire tearing through the Victorian foundations of Broad Street, the odd collection of stragglers outside the kebab shop completely unaware of what was tearing up the foundations of Wolverhampton.

Step forward ripper Owens, Toby Jepson and co…… Ripper Owens strikes me as the fans fan, a man that was plucked from obscurity; the punter propped at the end of the bar with the dreams of being the focal point. Ronnie James may have been knee high to a grasshopper but boy did he pack a punch, and there was also more than the odd occasion when he could do soul – so take Toby Jepson and Ripper Owens a perfect combination of chainsaw flesh tearing aggression mixed with lashings of soulful heart and vocal chord revs.  Mix that up with over 4 decades of dio musicians and you’re in for a treat.

Trying to cram all of that into 1.5 hour session was about as easy as stopping the titanic leak water, Dio, Rainbow & Heaven and Hell hits taking a swipe at your face like a fearsome left from Tyson.  Just as Owens had removed his sun glasses you were being whipped in the face by Jepson’s locks and if that wasn’t enough to keep you entertained, you had Scott Warren on keyboards as mad as a marsh hare on acid, the flawless Craig Goldy on guitar, chief tub thumper Simon Wright and James Lomenzo on bass.

The encore was a fitting tribute, ‘we rock you’ and rock you they did, see the simple truth is they just don’t make them like they used too…as the sweaty leather and denim poured out into the street no one could have said a bad word, even if they could have been heard.

This wasn’t just a group of musicians here for the money nor even the fame…’someone’s screaming my name, come and make me holy again’ and that they did!

Review By Chris Knight