It's been eight years since Vin Campbell and Vinny Appice fashioned the group Last In Line in tribute to their onetime bandmate, the late Ronnie James Dio. But now, Campbell says with amusing, "If I had recognized again then we'd nonetheless be round and speaking about our second album of authentic music, I'd by no means have named the band Last In Line."
Last In Line is certainly coming with a brand new album, II -- whose video for the opening observe "Blackout The Sun" is premiering completely beneath -- on Feb. 22. The follow-up to 2016's Heavy Crown contains a new bass participant, Phil Soussan, instead of the late Jimmy Bain, and Campbell hopes it has an advanced sound from its predecessor.
"It actually feels like a band's second album -- one of many the reason why I elected to only merely name it II," Campbell -- who was a part of the unique Dio band with Appice and Bain from 1982-86 and performed on its first three studio albums -- tells Billboard. "It actually feels like a creating band. That Dio element remains to be there; We nonetheless have that crunch that Vinny and I've once we play collectively. But on (II) we've actually created our personal sound with the affect from Andrew (Freeman, singer) and now Phil, who's a extra formidable bass participant than Jimmy. We've created one thing that's just a little extra distinctive and sounds extra formidable and adventurous than the Heavy Crown album.
"I'm nicely happy with it, I've bought to say. There's nothing concerning the file I might re-do. It got here out nice."
Campbell says the primary couple of songs that got here alongside helped outline the broader dynamic assault of II, which was once more produced by Foreigner/Dokken bassist Jeff Pilson. "Blackout The Sun" was one; "It's a quite simple music, a quite simple riff," the guitarist notes. "It harkens again extra to the basic Dio sound. It's undoubtedly a music I may've heard Ronnie doing." "Landslide," in the meantime, has a extra up to date taste -- nonetheless heavy however with an edgy riff and smoother dynamic.
"We just about added an additional dimension to each music on the album that I don't assume we dared to consider once we have been doing Heavy Crown," Campbell acknowledges. "I really feel like we're musically extra adventurous, and lots of that has to do with simply the pure passage of time and that we've had a number of years with Phil within the band and a bunch of stay exhibits to actually get to know one another musically and stretch out. We've sort of come into our personal, which is what you desire a band to do."
Last In Line shall be enjoying extra of these exhibits, beginning this week in Texas and going into the spring, out and in of Campbell's schedule with Def Leppard. Last In Line will even be on the identical invoice as Leppard on June 14 at this 12 months's Download Festival within the U.Ok. "There's nonetheless a little bit of confusion, 'trigger the band is called after a Dio album," notes Campbell, who's hoping to make use of graphics and different instruments to re-brand Last In Line with its personal identification, maybe as LiL. "Obviously we've bought two albums of authentic materials, so we'll be capable to match extra of our personal originals into the present and there'll be much less Dio classics -- although that's nonetheless very, very a lot the heritage of Vinny and I, and the place the band grew from. We'll nonetheless be enjoying Dio classics, however now we've got extra of our authentic materials to slot in round it."
Campbell says the connection between Last In Line and the Dio camp remains to be frosty. "I noticed Wendy Dio at (Bain's) funeral and she or he sort of blanked me, and that's to be anticipated," Campbell notes. "There isn't rather a lot there between us." But the guitarist does voice help for the Dio hologram that's being trotted out with the Dio Disciples band of subsequent alumni. "I'm not knocking that," Campbell says. "It's all leisure. I perceive there's many, many individuals who by no means bought to see Ronnie carry out whereas he was alive, in order that's, I suppose, as shut as they're gonna get. What they're doing is protecting the legacy of Dio and the Dio band alive, and that's a profit to us in Last In Line. And what we're doing is a profit to them. It's all half and parcel of the identical factor."
As for his "day job" with Def Leppard, Campbell plans to be busy with stay performances in Europe and Canada, although a lighter schedule, definitely from 2018, will give him extra time to give attention to Last In Line. A red-letter day, nonetheless, comes March 29, when the group is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Brooklyn. Though not a fan of the Rock Hall earlier than this, Campbell, who joined Def Leppard throughout 1992 to interchange the late Steve Clark, says he's excited concerning the prospect.
"I'm the 'new man' -- I've been within the band 27 years, and we've had some very, very lean years in these 27," he says. "But we've labored actually exhausting, and I'd say 30 or 40 % of our audiences at the moment are younger sufficient to be our kids, so we've actually crossed that generational factor. That, and being within the Hall of Fame, form of feels validating. It's a superb time to be in Def Leppard."