From their masterpiece album, Long Live Rock and Roll, here is Rainbow with their 1978 classic “The Gates of Babylon.” The album was to be the last featuring the classic lineup of Ronnie James Dio, Ritchie Blackmore, Don Airey, Jimmy Bain, and Cozy Powell. Dio would depart the following year to front the spot recently vacated by Ozzy Osbourne in Black Sabbath. This track features guitar work by Blackmore that ranks amongst the very best in the rock pantheon.
When I was growing up in rural Indiana in the early 80′s, there was very limited access to heavy music. These were the days before MTV blew up with the whole hair metal, Headbangers Ball phenomenon. But on Sunday nights, there was a two hour radio show that came from WOXY, the radio station of Miami University, just across the state line in Oxford Ohio. It was called “Massive Metal for the Masses” and I would wait all week for it to air. It was through this show that I was introduced to bands like Venom, Bathory, WASP, Michael Schenker Group, Slayer and countless others. This is my tip of the hat to that show. I call it “Massive Metal Mondays.” Every week, I pay tribute to defining moments by the artists that laid the groundwork for heavy metal to become the worldwide cultural bond for all of us metalheads.