Heavy metal legend Ronnie James Dio died last week at the age of 67. Dio was a monster of rock, having fronted Rainbow, post-Ozzy Black Sabbath, and Dio, among others. Wikipedia also credits him with popularizing the “devil’s horns” hand gesture. He never reached the top of the charts, but his work (and voice) should be familiar to anyone who ever went through a metal phase — and how many others can claim tribute songs by Tenacious D.
VH1 deemed Dio’s “Rainbow in the Dark” as one of the top 40 metal songs of all time, but it was never one of his favorites. For whatever reason, I always preferred “The Last in Line.” though never really promoted as a single, it was a staple on album-oriented rock stations in the 1980s. The lyrics aren’t poetry — this is metal after all — but it’s a memorable song, and pure Dio. It begins:
We’re a ship without a storm
The cold without the warm
Light inside the darkness that it needs, yeah
We’re a laugh without a tear
The hope without the fear
We are coming – home