Dio – Snapshot
2013, Niji Entertainment/RED Distribution
1. Holy Diver (live)
3. Fever Dreams
4. We Rock (live)
5. Long Live Rock N’ Roll (live)
6. Stargazer (live)
7. Heaven and Hell (live)
8. Children of the Sea (live)
9. Eat Your Heart Out (live)
10. Killing the Dragon
Stumbled across this album as it was a generated recommendation for me on a website… I hadn’t heard anything about it but Wendy Dio’s Niji Entertainment is listed as the label for it so I was curious as to what it was and why it seems like there’s been zero press on it.
Did some digging around and turns out that Snapshot is going to be an entire line of budget compilations for artists whose music was distributed through RED Distribution at one time or another. For example, Anthrax will be getting their own Snapshot release. These compilations seem to rely on newer tracks (from albums that RED had distributed) and live cuts of classic tracks. As the cover says, each Snapshot release comes with 10 tracks and four “snapshots” of the artist.
Personally, I don’t care for budget compilations. I think if you’re going to package someone’s music as a “best of” or “greatest hits” then you need to give it the proper care and respect in terms of packaging and song selection. That said, I also understand a casual fan is probably much more likely to pick up a $7 compilation at Walmart rather than purchase a $30 two-disc set from a music store or Amazon.com.
For Dio’s entry into this series, there are 7 live tracks and 3 studio cuts. “Fever Dreams” is from Magica while “Push” & “Killing the Dragon” are from Killing the Dragon. They are good tracks and I would agree that they are highlights from the second half of Dio’s career.
Most of the live tracks are a ripoff. “Stargazer” is only 1 min 42 sec and “Children of the Sea” is 1 min 24 sec. “Stargazer” is completely cut off just as it’s starting and “Children of the Sea” doesn’t even start at the beginning before it randomly stops. “Heaven and Hell” is pitifully reduced to 3 min 18 sec with another abrupt ending.
I have no clue when and where these live songs were done. If I ever find out, I’ll post the information in this review. “Holy Diver” sounds like a soundcheck to me, but I’m sure most of these songs are taken straight from Dio’s previously released live albums though “Eat Your Heart Out” (Has this one ever appeared on a live release before?) has a poorer sound quality than the rest of the songs.
Even by budget standards, this is an awful compilation. I understand using the work-around of including a few classics by making them live versions but why cut them so pitifully short? I’d rather they just included another late-era Dio studio track than do that.
This album costs so little to buy because it obviously cost so little to produce. It’s cheap. It’s a disgrace to the memory of Ronnie James and Wendy should be ashamed of herself for allowing this misrepresentation to exist. She needs to better protect Ronnie’s memory and work. I have a feeling things are only going to get worse though.
Buy the album at Amazon.com (if you’re a glutton for punishment)