Last In Line
It’s easy to see Last In Line as a Dio tribute band. And to a certain extent this is true. But it’s also misleading.
The band were started in 2012 by Def Leppard guitarist Vivian Campbell, as a way of representing the great heritage of the first three Dio albums, namely ‘Holy Diver’, ‘The Last In Line’ and ‘Sacred Heart’. He was joined in this venture by bassist Jimmy Bain, drummer Vinny Appice and keyboard player Claude Schnell. Like Campbell, they were all members of Dio during that golden period when these albums were recorded.
Coming in on vocals was Andrew Freeman. He wasn’t a Ronnie James Dio soundalike at all, but gave these classic songs his own viewpoint. And live, the band quickly showed that they were not merely performing material with which they were closely associated, but bringing a zest and class to bear that was exciting and individual.
However, Last In Line were not content to just tour play these old tracks. In 2016, they released ‘Heavy Crown’, an album featuring impressively original songs. Sadly, though, just before this came out, Jimmy Bain died in January last year while on the Def Leppard ‘Hysteria On The High Seas’ cruise. His place has now been taken by former Ozzy Osbourne bassist Phil Soussan. Schnell, meantime, has been replaced by Erik Norlander (an ex-member of Asia Featuring John Payne).
Now, Last In Line have established themselves as a creative and formidable band. They pay homage to the legacy of Ronnie Dio and those early Dio records, but also now have their own momentum.
‘Holy Diver’, ‘The Last In Line’, ‘Devil In Me’
Jimmy Bain’s final show with the band, as they blaze through ‘We Rock’.
Their finest hour
‘Heavy Crown’ 2016