Die Young

Album: Heaven and Hell (1980)
Charted: 41


  • "Die Young" is the sixth track on the Heaven and Hell album, credited like all the songs to Ronnie James Dio, Tony Iommi, Bill Ward and Geezer Butler. The lyrics, written of course by Dio, appear to be about the futility of life in the face of its ephemeral nature. Like all of Dio's lyrics, they take some poetic turnings, so it's up to the listener. Check out the sudden softening of Dio's vocals, now singing in the high register, on the middle section. The song is also notable for its live performances; it's been a staple of Dio's, Gillan's, and Martin's sets, and typically features some lengthy instrumental work.
  • In the book Precious Metal: Decibel Presents the Stories Behind 25 Extreme Metal Masterpieces, the new Black Sabbath lineup talks about their impressions of each other before they worked together. Iommi says that he really loved Ronnie's voice when he listened to his work in Rainbow. Butler had barely heard one track. Ward mentions Rainbow's "Stargazer" (from the 1976 Rising album) as "an unbelievably good piece of work," and Dio had of course heard their singles on the radio but hadn't rushed out to buy any albums.

    In the book, "Die Young" is specifically mentioned as having been written in Miami. The band was in transition from Bel Air California to Miami Florida, as well as transitioning between lead singers and having a new producer (Martin Birch) as well.
  • Dio cites "Die Young" as "a great, great song that went in so many different directions," and names it as one of the songs that marked the sharp departure from the previous Ozzy-fronted Sabbath.
  • Geezer Butler had just come back from his brief exile from the band, just in time to redo the bass on many of the songs in Miami. Butler is sometimes overshadowed by the fame of the other band members - people forget that he was the main lyrics-writer for Black Sabbath before Dio - so that's his fascination with religion, science-fiction, fantasy and horror that you're hearing in the early Sabbath. Plus, he was the first to team with Ozzy, originally in the bands Rare Breed, Polka Tulk, and Earth - this last changed to Black Sabbath when they discovered another band named Earth.

Comments: 1

  • Cyberpope from Richmond, CanadaSurprising some whacked out parents didn't sue for their teenage kids committing suicide because of this song!
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