Late last year, representatives with Niji Entertainment – the company responsible for many recent Dio re-issues – and BMG announced that the were partnering to launch a new series of re-issues of Dio’s archived live recordings. That series launched Friday with the re-issues of his previously released live recordings Evil or Divine: Live in New York City and Holy Diver Live. These two re-issues are presentations that will appeal to some audiences and at the same time, prove somewhat intriguing. The recordings will prove appealing in part because of their expanded availability. This will be discussed shortly. The set lists featured in each set list makes them intriguing. This will be discussed a little later. The additional content featured with the re-issues will appeal to audiences, too, but only to a point. Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of these first two re-issues in BMG and Niji Entertainment’s Dio live re-issues series. All things considered, they make the recordings a presentation that will appeal primarily to Dio’s most devoted fans.
BMG and Niji Entertainment’s brand new re-issues of his live recordings Evil or Divine: Live in New York City and Holy Diver Live are presentations that will find appeal among a specific audience group. That group is the most devoted Dio fans. That is due in part to the fact that the previously out-of-print recordings have been made available in this presentation on two separate platforms – CD and LP. Evil or Divine: Live in New York City is now available on 2CD mediabook and 3LP set. Specific details were not provided information presented about the recordings, so it has to be assumed in this case, the CDs in question contain the 15-song set from the original 2002 concert while the “book” features pictures and new liner notes about the concert. The LP set contains the noted concert, too. This will appeal to those audiences who are more fan vinyls than CDs.
The re-issue of Holy Diver Live also features the original concert, which was recorded in 2005, on a 3LP set. Once again, this will appeal mainly to vinyl aficionados as part of the ongoing to appeal to those audiences. What’s more, the recording was pulled directly from the recording’s original 2006 presentation on CD, DVD and Blu-ray. In other words, audiences get from this presentation the same concert that they got in the concert’s previous release here on each platform, just in an audio-only format instead of on a full audio-visual presentation. On a similar note, the track listing of the Live in New York City is lifted from the concert’s 2003 DVD release rather than its 2005 CD release. This leads into the recordings’ most intriguing and somewhat problematic issue, that of the track listings as they relate to the platforms on which they have been released here.
It has been noted that the new re-issues of Dio’s live recordings Evil or Divine: Live in New York City and Holy Diver Live are positives for Dio’s most devoted fan base because in this case, BMG and Niji Entertainment have made them available on CD as well as vinyl sets. Those vinyl sets even feature some bonus content, which will be discussed later. While that is true, one also cannot help but wonder why the recordings were not also re-issued on Blu-ray in this case. That is especially the case with Evil or Divine: Live in New York City. The set list from that recording’s DVD release is what audiences get on the 2CD and 3LP set here. It has yet to receive a Blu-ray re-issue, and considering that concerts are meant to be heard and seen, there is no denying that having the DVD set list re-issued exclusively on audio rather than also on audio-visual presentations is slightly disconcerting. Even in the case of Holy Diver Live, knowing that the set list featured in the CD and LP platforms came direct from the concert’s previous releases, one cannot help but wonder why the concert was not re-issued here on DVD and Blu-ray as well complete with the bonus content featured in the vinyl set. The end result here is that while it is good that these concerts have been re-issued, it becomes clear that these re-issues are being aimed primarily at Dio fans who are also vinyl fans more so than Dio fans in general. Yes fans who prefer CDs to vinyl are rewarded, but fans who prefer experiencing concerts in full rather than those who would take them in on audio-only platforms are left out here. So to that end, while the availability is expanded here, that expansion is still only to a point. It is not enough to make these re-issues failures, but that aside, it does still detract from the recordings’ presentations.
While the limited expansion of Dio’s new live recordings definitely detracts from the re-issues’ success, the bonus content offered to those who can look past that issue will appeal in its own way to the noted targeted audiences. The CD presentations of each re-issue offer those audiences what has to be assumed to be (again no details about the specifics of the mediabooks were released in the information about the re-issues) extra photos and possible liner notes for the concerts. While maybe not a whole lot, those possible photos will make up slightly for the concerts not being re-issued on DVD and/or Blu-ray. They will help give audiences at least a glimpse into the concerts. The vinyls feature their own bonuses. The Live in New York City vinyl offers audiences four songs total from Dio’s albums, Angry Machines, Magica, Killing the Dragon, and Master of the Moon. BMG and Niji Entertainment, by the way, re-issued all four of those albums on CD last year. The Holy Diver Live brings in the same bonus content that was featured in its original release so long ago. So in all, audiences who purchase the vinyl re-issues of the recordings will get their own bonus content, as will fans who get the CD re-issues. It is just that those who buy the vinyl re-issues will get even more out of those re-issues than those who buy the CD re-issues. To that end, the bonus content featured in these recordings’ re-issues, on each available platform, but it is a limited positive. That is because audiences who get the vinyls really get more albeit slightly more, than those who buy the recordings’ CD re-issues. Keeping this in mind along with everything else discussed here, it becomes clear that while audiences will appreciate having these previously out-of-print recordings in their music libraries, those who do will be a more targeted audience than all of Dio’s fans.
BMG and Niji Entertainment’s new re-issues of his live recordings Evil or Divine: Live in New York City and Holy Diver Live are interesting presentations. They give audiences who might not have otherwise had the recordings on any of the platforms from their previous releases something to appreciate. That is due to the somewhat expanded availability of the recordings here. Fans of vinyl and those of CDs will both be able to take in the concerts on the respective platforms. Of course while audiences are also somewhat punished because the recordings were not re-issued on DVD or Blu-ray whereas their predecessors were. That is going to limit the appeal for these recordings. The bonus content featured with the recordings offers its own appeal for audiences. Though considering the information provided did not lay out as directly, the bonus content featured in the CD platforms as the vinyl re-issues, one cannot help but feel that the vinyl re-issues offer more to appreciate in terms of bonus content than the CD re-issues. Keeping all of this in mind, BMG and Niji Entertainment’s new re-issues of Evil or Divine: Live in New York City and Holy Diver Live will appeal to a Dio’s most devoted fans, especially those who prefer vinyl to any other platform. These re-issues are available now.
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