Sometimes greatness is born out of a couple of friends meeting up and having fun. That’s almost exactly what happened in the case of Last In Line, a heavy metal outfit based in Los Angeles.
The friends in question happened to be members of the defunct Dio band, which was dissolved after the death of its founder Ronnie James Dio. Drummer Vinny Appice, bassist Jimmy Bain and guitar maestro Vivian Campbell got together for a little Dio reunion back in 2011. Casual jamming turned into a serious project when the chemistry between the musicians became undeniable, even after a 27-year hiatus.
Naturally, the fellas pursued a second session and this time, Vinny called in a friend of his, Andrew Freeman, to help out with the vocals. Freeman had sung for powerhouse punk band The Offspring and in Las Vegas production ‘Raiding The Rock Vault’.
With the lineup thus completed and making music that was akin to the original Dio, the band, named after the second Dio album, embarked on a series of small shows. But what started as a couple of local gigs grew into a world tour with Las In Line being invited to perform in the UK and Japan. Attracted by the prospects of the outfit, Frontier Records offered them a chance to record an album. And they took it.
The result was a resounding debut album forged around the trademark sound that made Dio great. ‘Heavy Crown’ was released in February 2016 and the band followed it up with a tour that took them across the States and across the pond. They are currently in the UK winding up with dates in Wolverhampton, Newcastle, Sheffield and Belfast. If you’re in the UK, look up their schedule and be sure to catch a show.
Classic 80s rock sounds fill your ears when the opener ‘Devil in Me’ begins to play. The guitar riffs rise and cymbals crash to complement Freeman’s soaring, lusty vocals.
If this writer were to pick a favorite song, it would have to be ‘Curse the Day’. Though Freeman’s singing is exemplary throughout the project, this song proves there is no emotion it cannot convey, all without faltering off-key. But even this was a tough call in an album littered with brightly polished gems. When you download the album you will find that you have a rock masterpiece on your hands.
Miami Based, Internationally Known