Album Reviews

Ronnie James Dio – Before Elf There Were Elves Review

Released by: Niji Ent Group

Release Date: Out Now!!!

Genre: Classic Rock/ Blues/Hard Rock



1. You Shook Me

2. Stay With Me

3. Four Day Creep

4. Buckingham Blues

5. Wakeup Sunshine

6. Driftin’

7. Smile For Me Lady

8. You Felt The Same Way

9. Simple Man

10. Drown Me In The River

11. Cold Ramona

12.. Little Queenie

What we in the music industry and every fan out there that ever heard Ronnie James sing would give to have the man with the golden pipes still breathing alive and well and making music huh? Thankfully the man left behind a treasure chest of music from the past, and I think we are just now getting to enjoy some of it.

“Formed in 1967 in Cortland, New York, The Elves also featured other members that would carve a niche for themselves in the hard rock world! Guitarist David “Rock” Feinstein (Dio’s cousin) would go on to front the Rods.”

Although the group eventually split up after 3 albums, is always a real treat to listen to Dio singing a different style from what he eventually ended up so embedded which was the metal genre.

Here Ronnie sings in a more bluesy classic rock vein which was clearly influenced by some big bands at the time, like Led Zeppelin, The Who, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Hendrix etc.

The groovy of such bluesy inspired get’n go rhythms praise with pure 70’s classic rock fashion in songs like “Buckingham Blues” and “Driftin'”. Ronnie’s voice is gold even for a recording of such age as this one, you can sense his fine tune voice in his early years and the polished outcome he would eventually mend his pipes to in the long run.

In a more laid back homage, the doo wop influenced rock bluesy number “Wakeup Sunshine” sounds totally different then anything Ronnie did in his later years.

A mix of styles and early influences here as you get a peek into an early timeframe period (1970),  where Dio was just getting started and wore his influences on his sleeves. Everything from early classic rock, to blues, doo wop and even some early haunting medieval tones that can later be traced back to his Rainbow days. An exemplary example of a career on the verge of something grandiose and as always Ronnie’s voice was always a point of focus, and on this album you get a sense of a pre cursor to his eventual development over the years. A nice collectors item for any fan of DIO.

Written by Denys

Ratings Denys    7/10

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