Dio Disciples

Gig Review: Dio Disciples and The Rods @ Garage, Glasgow, 14th June 2011

This night was always going to be special, no matter how anyone views the Dio Disciples, their dedication to continue the music of one of the greatest vocalists of all time is honourable. People, especially a few in Glasgow, seem to have this idea that they are somehow trying to replace Dio but as Steve Mignardi said “you can’t replace the master.” No-one in the band, not Tim “Ripper” Owens or Toby Jepson who are handling vocal duties, have ever viewed it as such, this is simply their way of saying “thank you Ronnie” by making sure everyone can experience the music that he created.

The Rods BandIt was fitting that The Rods [9], led by Ronnie’s cousin David “Rock” Feinstein, would be supporting the band on this tour throughout Europe and helping to promote their music and keep Ronnie alive through that family link.

Performing their first gig in Glasgow since 12th March 1982 when they supported Iron Maiden on the “The Beast on the Road” tour, The Rods rolled back the years and you would never think they stopped touring.

Coming on stage Garry Bordonaro (bass) and David “Rock” Feinstein (guitar and vocals) worked together and controlled the mixed crowd of old fans and new young fans like it was a stadium and they were the headline act.

Never slowing down the band performed a series of hits across their albums opening with the 1983 hit ‘Hurricane’ before switching it up to their brand new rock anthem ‘I Just Wanna Rock’. ‘Let Them Eat Metal’, ‘Born To Rock’ and ‘Wild Dogs’ hit out before Carl Canedy hit his drum solo which lead to ‘Get Ready To Rock ‘n’ Roll’ and topping the night off with the 1981 hit ‘Power Lover’.

The band might have been off the road from 1986 to 2008 but over the last three years they have either been working hard or the chemistry never left as they controlled the stage and the audience better than many to all modern metal bands today.

Although the Garage had a fairly decent turn out for a gig two days after the Download Festival, it felt so much bigger when Dio Disciples [9] walked on stage as the crowd gathered, united, chanting “Dio! Dio! Dio!”

The night started off with Tim “Ripper” Owens on vocal duties as he opened with three Dio songs: ‘Stand Up And Shout’, the classic and crowd pleaser ‘Holy Diver’ and ‘Don’t Talk To Strangers’. Before this night begun I was excited to see Ripper Owens on vocals as we all know his vocal ability and in order to paid tribute to Ronnie James Dio, you have to have talent and it was no surprise that he commanded the stage and performed the songs with all of his heart and soul.

As Tim stepped off you could feel the crowd a little unsure of Toby Jepson as he walked onto the stage, especially with the vocal and stage performance that just went before him. Toby didn’t waste time in making fans believers of him as he performed ‘Egypt (The Chains Are On)’ and ‘King of Rock And Roll’. While his vocals are completely different of that to Ripper Owens, he held his own and put in an incredible performance and it was only made better when he was joined by Owens to perform the Rainbow hit ‘Catch The Rainbow’ and ‘Stargazer’.

Dio Disciples BandSwitching it up all night, Owens performed ‘Neon Knights’ (Black Sabbath) before teaming up with Jepson again for ‘Straight Through The Heart’ and ‘Children Of The Sea’. Continuing they performed ‘Killing The Dragon’ and ‘The Last In Line’ from Ronnie’s solo work before the band covered Rainbow’s ‘Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll’ and ‘Man On The Silver Mountain’ before they ended their set with the famous ‘Heaven And Hell’.

Returning to the stage for their encore the band performed ‘Rainbow In The Dark’ and finished the night on ‘We Rock’.

Simon Wright (drums) described by Ripper Owens as the “man behind the power, behind the explosions, behind the Guinness” put in an energetic set with a well performed drum solo only three songs into the set, Craig Goldy did not look as if he was enjoying himself too much. Craig’s performance over the night was nothing short of brilliant, his guitar solo later in the set as well as his performance during every song was incredible but his presence on stage was never felt. Standing still for the majority of the night and smiling for the first time 3/4 through the set, it was hard to get the right feel from him whether he was interested or whether it was just simply too emotional performing these songs.

Having interviewed David “Rock” Feinstein of The Rods before the gig I asked for his views on the Disciples and while he approved of them performing he did state it can get very emotional as you’re not watching Ronnie himself on vocals and it reminds you he is really gone.

As Scott Warren commanded the keyboard and Rudy Sarzo (bass) put in a great performance, the best stage performance of the night went to Tim “Ripper” Owens. While his vocal performance was spot on and he controlled the stage and fans like a true frontman, it was his constant tribute to Ronnie by either talking about him, making the crowd sing louder or holding his hand to his heart and looking to the heavens as the sweat ran from him while he gave his all, he was there for one reason and one reason only, to honour one of the greatest men this industry has ever seen.

Every time that chant of “Dio! Dio! Dio!” filled and rocked the Garage, you could see how much it meant to every person on stage.

As Toby Jepson performed ‘Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll’, he changed the final chorus to ‘Long Live Ronnie James Dio’ and without doubt, his music always will.


About ??

Michael is the owner and creator of EspyRock. He is your general all round geek; sports fan; TV show fanatic. You can find him sharing his thoughts on his personal Twitter account. Contact Michael on Twitter or via Email.


  1. DIO DISCIPLES: Glasgow Footage Available | TotalMetal - 17/06/2011

    […] A review of the concert can be found at EspyRock. […]