Mob Rules (Deluxe Edition)
Everyone raves about Heaven and Hell (the album), not least Heaven and Hell (the band).
The recent ‘deluxification’ of that classic was something of a disappointment - something that has, thankfully, been rectified with this release. Mob Rules was a nigh-on perfect melding of Sabbath’s original proto-metal sounds with Ronnie James Dio’s elvish lyrics and RAWK vocals, which suffered from a rather feeble final mix (certainly on CD). This reissue makes good on that. We’re back to one of those albums for which no stereo is loud enough - one of the signs of greatness, in my opinion.
Disc two’s live recording, while an interesting document of the band at the time, suffers in a similar way to the recent reissue of Live Evil. Dio never seems fully comfortable with the old classics and falls back on his rock-frontman ad-libs too often for my liking. He does make a good go at an English accent, though, saying ‘ta’ in-between a few numbers and gets a good sing-along going towards the end. No, it’s disc one you’ll be wanting, so go on - make the sign.