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2015’s Ozzfest Japan To Be Black Sabbath’s Farewell Gig
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Ides Bergen   |  @   |  
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Black Sabbath Band Photo 2013

Sharon Osbourne, wife and manager of Ozzy Osbourne, has just released a video announcing that Ozzfest will be returning to Japan later this year. She also casually dropped the bombshell that Black Sabbath‘s headlining slot on the second night of the festival will be the band’s farewell performance.

Watch the announcement video here below.

Ozzy himself had previously stated that the band would record one more album and do one last tour. No word, as yet, on whether those plans are still on. Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi has been undergoing treatments for lymphoma since 2012. His health issues did not derail the band from releasing the critically acclaimed comeback album 13.

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‘Fingers Bloody Fingers’: Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi Featured In Animated Short
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Ides Bergen   |  @   |  
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Tony Iommi from Black Sabbath

The past couple of years have been quite eventful for the godfather of metal, Mr. Tony Iommi. The guitarist has seen the reunion of his band Black Sabbath with original singer Ozzy Osbourne and the release of their first album together in 35 years, the impressive 13. That album’s opening track, “God Is Dead,” went on to win the band their first ever Grammy for “Best Hard Rock or Metal Performance” in 2014.

Iommi’s personal life has been no less eventful. He was diagnosed with cancer during the recording sessions for 13 and has been undergoing treatments while also undertaking a massive world tour. It has been a grueling process for Iommi, who recently celebrated his 67th birthday. It hasn’t been all bad news for the six-string legend though; he was also awarded an honorary doctorate degree from Coventry University “in recognition of his contribution to the world of popular music.”

And now as we all celebrate the 45th Anniversary Of Black Sabbath’s debut album this month, Iommi is the subject of a new VH-1 animated short about the origins of his unique iconic riff mastery.

Watch the animated short, The Complete History of Heavy Metal: Fingers Bloody Fingers, here below.

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Massive Metal Monday: Black Sabbath “Black Sabbath”
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Ides Bergen   |  @   |  
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Black Sabbath Original Band Photo

In honor of the 45th anniversary of the release of Black Sabbath‘s self-titled
debut album this past Friday, today’s edition of Massive Metal Monday is dedicated to the album’s eponymous opening track. Watch the band perform the song live in Paris from 1970 here below.

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Massive Metal Monday: “Trashed” By Black Sabbath
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Ides Bergen   |  @   |  
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Black Sabbath with Ian Gillan and Bev Bevan

Born Again is Black Sabbath‘s highly underrated album from 1983. Having suffered the loss of their second singer and drummer in five years when Ronnie James Dio and Vinnie Appice left to form Dio, many folks had written Black Sabbath off as a going concern. But guitarist Tony Iommi and bassist Geezer Butler roared back with a new “supergroup” lineup and a killer lineup of new tunes. Legendary Deep Purple vocalist Ian Gillan came aboard as front man and newly sober Sabbath founding drummer Bill Ward was back behind the kit. By the time the album was released, Ward was drinking again and unable to tour while he sought treatment. Legendary drummer Bev Bevan, who had been in both The Move and Electric Light Orchestra filled in for the tour.

The album proved to be very polarizing among critics and fans alike and its album cover is widely considered to be one of the very worst in the history of metal, but the music contained therein possesses an immediacy uncommon to Sabbath and lyrical content very atypical of the band. It is a very unique album in the band’s pantheon and a cult classic among metal fans. The album’s one and only single “Trashed” helped push the album into the charts on both sides of the Atlantic and the video for the song provides a brief glimpse into this short-lived but storied period in the Black Sabbath’s history.

Watch the video for “Trashed” here, below.

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Massive Metal Monday: Black Sabbath “Sabbath, Bloody Sabbath”
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Ides Bergen   |  @   |  
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Black Sabbath Original Band Photo

When it comes to metal, it doesn’t really get any more massive than 1970’s Black Sabbath. The band that almost singlehandedly invented the genre with their 1970 self-titled debut album would see its original lineup collapse under the weight of heavy drug use and artistic stagnation by the end of the decade. But in 1973, at the time they released their fifth album, Sabbath Bloody Sabbath, the band was firing on all cylinders.

Here, with the title track of that monumental release, are Tony Iommi, Bill Ward, Geezer Butler, and Ozzy Osbourne, the original Black Sabbath.

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Black Sabbath Guitarist Tony Iommi Receives Honorary Doctorate
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Stoogeypedia   |  
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Tony Iommi

The always omnipresent “Iron Man,” Black Sabbath guitarist and co-founder Tony Iommi, can now add another accolade to his illustrious career: an Honorary Doctorate of Arts from Coventry University in Coventry, England “in recognition of his contribution to the world of popular music.”

You can view the video here below of Iommi receiving the honorary doctorate last week.

After basically re-sculpting and redefining the entire hard rock genre, and then using what he did in Sabbath as a precursor to the Heavy Metal boom that followed and continues to be passionately revered by scores of fans globally, Tony Iommi created riffs for a multitude of songs that are instantly recognizable to the sound, attitude, and style of the band, by the staunchest fan or the lightest Sabbath treader.

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3D Black Sabbath Maze Coming To Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights
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Empress Eve   |  @   |  
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Black Sabbath Halloween Horror Nights 2013

Black Sabbath is coming to Universal Studios Hollywood!

This fall, the theme park’s famed Halloween Horror Nights will feature an all-original horror-themed 3D maze called Black Sabbath: 13 3D, a new attraction based on the legendary band’s lyrics that will also include scenes inspired by their latest album, 13.

While going through the attraction, guests will reportedly face Lucifer and his bride, blood-soaked dead bodies, and bubbling pools of “radioactive water,” all while songs inspired by classic Black Sabbath tunes “Luke’s Wall,” “Iron Man,” “Paranoid,” “War Pigs,” “Electric Funeral,” and the haunting “Black Sabbath” boom at high volumes through the confines of the maze.

The maze’s design contains “horrifying graveyards, disturbing madhouses, and bone-chilling battlefields,” along with imagery of the godfathers of heavy metal themselves – Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, and Geezer Butler, the co-founders of Black Sabbath, currently on tour promoting 13, their first studio album together in 35 years.

Check out the announcement video here below, which includes a preview of the new attraction.

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Streaming Review: Classic Albums: Black Sabbath – Paranoid
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cGt2099   |  
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Streaming banner: Classic Albums: Black Sabbath: Paranoid

Classic Albums: Black Sabbath – ParanoidClassic Albums: Black Sabbath – Paranoid
Netflix | Amazon | Google Play | YouTube
DVD | Blu-ray
Directed by Matthew Longfellow
Starring Tony Iommi, Ozzy Osbourne, Geezer Butler, Bill Ward, Henry Rollins, Jim Simpson, Tony Allom, Deena Weinstein
Eagle Rock Entertainment
Originally Released: June 30, 2010

With drummer Bill Ward’s birthday today, May 5, and with all the news surrounding the upcoming Black Sabbath album, 13, (despite Ward not being involved), I thought it would be timely to delve back into the past for this week’s streaming review. This week, we take a look at the band’s classic album called Paranoid, a ground-breaking release that established them as an international phenomenal, and put Black Sabbath’s name down on the history books as the first heavy metal band.

The significance of Paranoid, in union with the other first four releases by Black Sabbath, is unparalleled. Combining musical influences of rock and roll, blues, jazz, swing, and classical; and swarming it among darker occultist lyrical topics, the band laid down a basis that would not only establish their own careers, but also form the basis for all metal bands that would follow as well as all of the subgenres to break off from metal. Black Sabbath’s contributions to the early development of metal are incomparable to all who would follow.

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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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Happy Birthday To Black Sabbath Guitarist Tony Iommi
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Stoogeypedia   |  
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Tony Iommi

Tony Iommi, whose bone crunching power riffs have been a staple of the sound and energy of the legendary English group Black Sabbath, celebrates his birthday today!

Almost no other guitarist in the history of the instrument was more innovative in perfecting that “power riff,” the easy yet extremely omnipotent guitar chord which sets a tone and pitch of a song, albeit a hard rock one. Iommi was like a power riff factory, churning them out in rapid, breathtaking succession on every Black Sabbath record since the band’s debut release in 1969. From the very first song on that album, the self-titled track in which Iommi’s riff thunders in like an equestrian out of control, a jouster with a lance coming right out of the speaker grill, it set the style for the entire Sabbath sound which would follow for decades.

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