Start with Rising (1976)
Rising is a Tolkien-esque tour de force that cloaks muscular arrangements in epic prog-mysticism. Recorded in short order with producer Martin Birch at Musicland Studios, in Munich, Rising saw Ronnie James Dio’s leather lungs endow songs about wizards, cartomancy and death with a regal authority. The union of metaphysical storytelling and the earthly physics of classic rock has never been bettered. Check out the irresistible groove of Tarot Woman, which sees Blackmore’s guitar pull you into the eye of the storm for a libinal hoe-down, or the slack groove of Run With The Wolf, Blackmore’s arcane mastery of the bluesrock solo answering the call of the wild. And then there’s Stargazer, featuring the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, it remains the acme of early heavy metal expanding the boundaries of a newly-minted sound.
Recommended track : Stargazer