The Four Horsemen ride again (well, at least three of them do)

Posted: August 1, 2013 in Music, Op-ed, Reviews, Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , ,

Black Sabbath are without question the band that invented heavy metal as we know it, if not a little by accident. Over 40 years ago Osbourne, Iommi, Butler, and Ward created a style that no one has been able to successfully reproduce. Dark tones and crushing rhythms made for a unique and innovative style. Unfortunately though egos, drugs, and booze got in the way and the band kicked out Ozzy just 10 years after they formed. 30 years and numerous lineup changes later, including a successful and incredible stint with the late great Ronnie James Dio, culminated in the original lineup getting back together for an album and tour.

After a year of writing and recording with super producer Rick Rubin, the band emerged with their first album with Ozzy in over 30 years, 13. The only holdout on this album and tour cycle is Bill Ward, whose spot behind the drum kit is filled by Brad Wilk of Rage Against the Machine. Wilk is incredibly proficient at hammering out the loose, blues metal rhythms that accompany Iommi’s doom-y guitar so well.

The album we are greeted with is, in a word, incredible. It’s everything we have come to expect from an original lineup Sabbath album. Heavy guitars, thundering drums, ominous lyrics, and expert delivery are all present here. Ozzy sounds better than he has since the early eighties and Iommi and Butler perform at their absolute best. If you are a true die hard fan, it is worth picking up the deluxe edition for the bonus tracks. If you want to take it a step further, get the Best Buy version for a fourth bonus track. Tracks like “End Of the Beginning”, “Loner”, and “Dear Father” make this an album you don’t want to miss. This one is well worth your money.

-Heath

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