In a new interview with "The Rhino Podcast", Tony Iommi reflected on his time recording and touring with Ronnie James Dio as his bandmate in both BLACK SABBATH and HEAVEN & HELL. The guitarist said (hear audio below): "It was really amazing. And it was going so good — the last [HEAVEN & HELL] album we did with Ronnie. We talked about doing another album. We were really focused, all of us, then. With any kind of egos or anything anybody had, it had all gone, and we could work together. And it was great fun — we had a great time doing that album, and we had a great time doing the tour. And we never put pressure on each other as far as, 'We've gotta do another album; we've gotta do this.' It was, 'If we wanna do it, we'll do it.' And we did talk about doing another album, and we would have done another album if Ronnie hadn't passed away. But at least we had that opportunity of being able to do that tour. And it was great."
Iommi went on to call Dio's 2010 death "a tremendous loss — absolute tremendous loss. He [had] such a unique voice, and the way he presented his voice was fantastic," he said.
Dio replaced Ozzy Osbourne in BLACK SABBATH in 1980, recording the "Heaven And Hell" and "Mob Rules" albums, plus "Live Evil", before leaving in 1982. He rejoined the group 10 years later for an album called "Dehumanizer", and again teamed with the group under the HEAVEN & HELL banner in 2006. HEAVEN & HELL released an album called "The Devil You Know" in 2009.
Ronnie passed away of stomach cancer on May 16, 2010 at the age of 67.
Dio was renowned throughout the world as one of the greatest and most influential vocalists in heavy metal history. The singer was diagnosed with cancer in late 2009. He underwent chemotherapy and made what is now his final public appearance in April 2010 at the Revolver Golden Gods Awards in Los Angeles.
Ronnie's long-awaited autobiography, titled "Rainbow In The Dark: The Autobiography", will be released on July 27 via Permuted Press.
Iommi is currently promoting the upcoming deluxe editions of BLACK SABBATH's "Heaven And Hell" and "Mob Rules" albums.