Never Say Die! (Remastered)
I don’t know what was going on with this release, the final one before the resurgence provided by Mr.
R. J. Dio. The band appears to be continuing their ‘new direction’ suggested in the previous release, Technical Ecstasy. Unfortunately, to continue the Spinal Tap references, it’s ‘Jazz Odyssey’ - check out Air Dance, or Breakout with its sax solo. Yes, sax solo. The jazz overtones which made the early albums so vital (see Hand of Doom from Paranoid, for example) now sound over-indulgent and nonsensical, like they’d made friends with Kenny G. As with the last album, the heaviness of old has all but gone. Over To You has echoes of it but that’s all they are - echoes. And pretty tinny ones, at that. A sorry end to the glory days with Ozzy but nothing lasts forever. He doesn’t even sing on the last track. Bill Ward does. Ah well.