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Black Sabbath’s ’13’: Dispatch From The Press Listening Party In Hollywood
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Stoogeypedia   |  
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Black Sabbath 13 marquee - photo by Geeks of Doom

The heart of Hollywood hosted an exclusive invite-only press listening party last night for the new, highly anticipated upcoming Black Sabbath album, entitled 13. The album marks the first time in 35 years that original members Ozzy Osbourne, Geezer Butler, and Tony Iommi have created and recorded original music on a studio release.

The definitely not black tie affair was held at the Ricardo Montalban Theater on Vine Street just off Hollywood Boulevard in the late afternoon on April 10, 2013. Limited to about only 40 journalists, yours truly was fortunate enough to be one of the members of an audience primed and ready to be in essence the first people to listen to the new album, aside from those involved in its recording (such as people like producer Rick Rubin and drummer Brad Wilk, who is playing in Sabbath in place of original Sabbath drummer Bill Ward, a move that has been rather polarizing to many die hard Sabbath fanatics). In a year marked by new musical releases by legendary rock artists like David Bowie and Iggy and The Stooges, Black Sabbath’s 13 also has created that same kind of neon electric buzz among the rock and music community.

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SXSW 2013 Movie Review: Dave Grohl’s Sound City
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Adam Frazier   |  @   |  
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Sound City Documentary

Sound City
Director: Dave Grohl
Screenwriter: Mark Monroe
Cast: Neil Young, Tom Petty, Stevie Nicks, Trent Reznor, Rick Rubin, Mick Fleetwood, Lars Ulrich, John Fogerty, Rick Springfield, Paul McCartney

Directed by Dave Grohl, Sound City focuses on the history of the legendary Van Nuys, CA studio for which it is named — where artists like Neil Young, Fleetwood Mac, Tom Petty, Johnny Cash, Nirvana, Nine Inch Nails, Weezer, and countless others created classic records over the past 40 years — and the never-ending fight to preserve the human element of music in a digital world.

Through interviews with legendary musicians and producers, Sound City uncovers the magic within the walls of that studio and culminates with many of those legends creating a new album on the same legendary Neve console that produced so many hits.

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New Black Sabbath Album With New Drummer To Be Released This June
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Stoogeypedia   |  
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Ozzy, Geezer and Tony

A new album by Black Sabbath, the titans of doomy hard rock/heavy metal, which is cryptically titled 13, is set to be released this June. For this new album, the original band members – Tony Iommi (guitar), Geezer Butler (bass), and the madman himself Ozzy Osbourne (vocals) – be sporting a new drummer in Brad Wilk of Rage Against the Machine.

Produced by Rick Rubin (Red Hot Chili Peppers, Johnny Cash, Public Enemy, Tom Petty), the album was originally supposed to be recorded by all four members of the first wave of the band, which has gone through numerous line ups in its storied, influential, and checkered history. Drummer Bill Ward, who played with the band on some of their classic releases like Paranoid, Volume 4, Master of Reality, and Sabbath Bloody Sabbath to name a few, couldn’t come to terms with the rest of the band, and in May of last year, backed out of the forthcoming project and any live dates which might follow the release of the album.

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Black Sabbath Guitarist Tony Iommi Diagnosed With Cancer
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cGt2099   |  
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Tony Iommi from Black Sabbath

Tony Iommi, long-time guitarist of Black Sabbath, has been diagnosed with lymphoma — a type of cancer that attacks the lymphocytes of the immune system. According to reports from Iommi and Black Sabbath, he is being consulted by doctors currently to determine the best course of treatment for the diagnosis.

The information has shocked fans of the iconic metal band, often cited as the founders of the metal genre, which comes not long after the band announced their reunion with the original line-up. It also comes 18 months after the loss of vocalist Ronnie James Dio, who was also battling cancer.

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It’s Official: Original Black Sabbath Line-Up Reunited For New Tour, Album
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cGt2099   |  
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Black Sabbath

It has been rumored for some time, but yesterday it has been made official: the original Black Sabbath line-up is back together for a new tour (their first together since 1997) and their first full studio album since 1978’s Never Say Die. The press conference announcement — embedded at the bottom of this post — was hosted by Henry Rollins, a long-time Sabbath fan.

The next Black Sabbath release is to be produced by Rick Rubin, famous for his work with Slayer, for his work with Johnny Cash during the Man In Black’s final years, and bringing Metallica back to form with their Death Magnetic album.

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Music Review: Red Hot Chili Peppers – I’m With You
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Obi-Dan   |  
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Red Hot Chili Peppers - I'm With YouRed Hot Chili Peppers
I’m With You
Warner Bros.
Produced by Rick Rubin
U.S.: CD | MP3
UK: CD | MP3
Release date: August 29, 2011

A lot has happened to the Red Hot Chili Peppers in the last 5 years. Since the release of their last album, 2006’s Stadium Arcadium, drummer Chad Smith joined Chickenfoot, bassist Flea went to school, singer Anthony Kiedis grew a moustache, and guitarist John Frusciante left due to ‘musical differences’ (why won’t bands just tell the truth and put out a statement that reads – to paraphrase Friends – ‘it’s just…we hate that guy’?). Now with Josh Klinghoffer on guitar duty, the Chili’s have released album number 10, I’m With You.

As I opened the case I kept repeating to myself, “don’t let me down, don’t let me down…”

Someone heard me. Loud and clear.

Stadium Arcadium had, apart from a small selection of songs including “Dani California” and “Hump de Bump,” had very little to revisit. At 28 tracks long, it was too much and a little self-indulgent. I’m With You includes half its predecessor’s number of tracks and twice the quality.

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Music Review: Metallica – Death Magnetic
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Obi-Dan   |  
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MetallicaMetallica – Death Magnetic
2008
Produced by Rick Rubin
Warner Bros.
Release date: September 12, 2008

I wished Metallica would have walked away (or done the decent rock band thing and imploded in a cloud of drugs and lawsuits) after And Justice For All. The Black Album at the most. Since then their output has been pretty awful. Let’s face it: St Anger was a catastrophe. The album was shrouded in turmoil and embarrassment. Welcoming ex-Ozzy bassist Rob Trujillo into a mixture that was ready to explode, the band released St Anger, which displayed their ability to perform generic riffs to a very high standard. Gone was the boundless energy and, most interestingly, guitar solos. The documentary Some Kind Of Monster demonstrated how fragile Metallica had become thanks to, well, almost everything and as such it seemed their creativity and tolerance for each other and love for the music had vanished.

But now five years after their last studio album, Metallica is back to metal up your ass with Death Magnetic. I was very apprehensive about pushing ‘play’ on my CD player when I put this in. But one thought kept pulsing through my head: “It’s Metallica!” Whether I liked it or not, whether I was ready or not, Metallica had returned.

And what a return it is.

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Will Rick Rubin Save Metallica’s ‘Death Magnetic’?
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Empress Eve   |  @   |  
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Metallica's Death MagneticIt’s been five years since Metallica‘s last studio album, St. Anger, and nearly two decades since the band’s original fans have been satisfied with Metallica’s musical offerings.

With their upcoming ninth studio effort, Death Magnetic, due out September 12, 2008, the Bay Area original masters of metal will seek to recapture the magic of their 1986 multi-platinum Master of Puppets.

To help them with this endeavor, Metallica ditched long-time producer Bob Rock in favor of Rick Rubin, the mastermind behind Jay Z’s hit single “99 Problems,” The Dixie Chicks’ Taking the Long Way and its controversial award-winning “Not Ready To Make Nice,” and Johnny Cash’s American IV: The Man Comes Around, which contained the popular cover of Nine Inch Nail’s “Hurt.” Rubin was also the one who came up with the idea in 1986 for Run DMC and Aerosmith to do a rap/rock hybrid of the latter artist’s classic rock tune, “Walk This Way,” which topped the charts and helped propel rap music into the mainstream.

That small sample of Rubin’s 33-year career in music producing should tell you that the man has the Midas Touch. But will Rubin’s golden touch shine through on Metallica’s Death Magnetic?

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