TONY IOMMI On RONNIE JAMES DIO: 'He Just Hits The Stage And Delivers Every Night'

Scott McLennan of the Massachusetts' Worcester Telegram & Gazette recently conducted an interview with legendary heavy metal guitarist Tony Iommi (BLACK SABBATH, HEAVEN AND HELL).

On its current concert tour, which hits the Tsongas Arena in Lowell on Thursday with openers MEGADETH and MACHINE HEAD, HEAVEN AND HELL is trotting out a couple of new songs, "The Devil Cried" and "Shadow of the Wind", both of which sound like this band has done nothing to tinker with the dark, menacing sound it forged back on its original outings. Ronnie James Dio's dramatic vocal combine with Iommi's heavy riffage as the band taps such favorite topics as the devil's work in this world and aspects of the more temporal pitfalls pocking the landscape.

What HEAVEN AND HELL is not playing in concert is almost as notable as what it is playing.

"Going out as HEAVEN AND HELL means I don't have to play 'Paranoid' or 'War Pigs'. This is the first time I haven't played those songs in concert. The show is two hours long and we just play the songs created by this band. I think when we used to play with Ronnie as BLACK SABBATH, people expected to hear 'Paranoid' and 'War Pigs'. That's just expected whenever you go see BLACK SABBATH," Iommi said.

And while he loves those trademark SABBATH songs, Iommi said he his enjoying this break from a routine that had him performing with the Osbourne-fronted SABBATH at the annual Ozzfest outings.

"We were playing the same show for 10 years whenever we did Ozzfest. We love that show, but some of the old SABBATH stuff we just can't do. We are restricted to what Ozzy can do. This is a much more uptempo show," Iommi said.

Iommi said he is marveling at Dio's stamina.

"The guy is amazing. He doesn't warm up or anything. He just hits the stage and delivers every night," Iommi said of the singer.

Read the entire interview at www.telegram.com.

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