HEAVEN AND HELL — the band featuring BLACK SABBATH guitarist Tony Iommi and bassist Geezer Butler, singer Ronnie James Dio, and drummer Vinny Appice (BLACK SABBATH, DIO) — and JUDAS PRIEST are rumored to joining forces for a summer tour. It should be noted, however, that this information has not yet been corrobated by an official source and should be considered a rumor only at this point.
Artisan News Service recently posted a short video interview with Vinny Appice in which he confirmed that the songwriting sessions for the new album from HEAVEN AND HELL will begin in April. Watch the footage in three parts at this location.
"We're doing another HEAVEN AND HELL, we're going to do a CD album, so we're going to start writing in April-May and I also have a little thing going on with my original band DERRINGER, the first band I played with in 1976," he said. "We're doing a little reunion tour. We got all these great offers and we thought we'd do it. So, it'll be a busy year."
Vinny even went on to say that the initial songwriting with HEAVEN AND HELL is going smooth as well.
"It was cool," he said. "Actually it's been over a year now. I went over there, to England in November and we got together and did three songs and it was great. After like five minutes it was like nothing, we were never apart after that, you know. It just went smooth as silk."
So what's it like playing with the legendary guitarist Tony Iommi on one side and the legendary bassist Geezer Butler on the other side?
"Those guys are, like, I mean it doesn't get much heavier than playing with Tony and Geezer," he said. "Tony on this side and Geezer on this side, it's just a wall of sound. And then you got Dio, who manages to sing over all that, it's just totally incredible. I'm in heaven...and hell."
HEAVEN AND HELL played the final show of its U.S. tour with ALICE COOPER and QUEENSRŸCHE on October 6, 2007 at the Verizon Wireless in Irvine, California. Before the encore, Indie 103.1's Full Metal Jackie presented the band with gold plaques on stage to honor U.S. sales in excess of 25,000 copies of the group's "Live at Radio City Music Hall" DVD. Vocalist Ronnie James Dio thanked the fans for their support, then dedicated the encore song ("Neon Knights") to veteran KNAC DJ Tawn Mastrey, who died in early October of liver failure brought on by hepatitis C.
Watch HEAVEN AND HELL performing "Neon Knights" in Tampa, Florida, September 2007: