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Black Sabbath - Paranoid CD (album) cover


Black Sabbath


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4.30 | 960 ratings

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4 stars What a beast of an album. It's hard to see how this is progressive, but it does have it's moments. Ozzy Osbourne, while not being the world's greatest vocalist, really suits this music. Tony Iommi is all about solid riffing, but he can pull offa solo when he needs one. Geezer Butler's bass adds background to the music, and at times shows some real technical skill. And Bill Ward can drums like it's the end of the world.

The album kicks off with the amazing 'War Pigs' which sets the high standard for the rest of the album. This one kicks some serious ass, with it's crushing riffery and political lyrics. The title track is short and sweet, and will always remain a classic in the band's catalogue, as it defies the common structure of such a short song. 'Planet Caravan' shows a massive departure from the last two riff- monsters, and is a very soft yet trippy track. Definitely one of Sabbath's best attempts at creating non-metal music. 'Iron Man' is a little overplayed for my ears, but the awesome solo gets me every time. 'Electric Funeral' is one of the album's darker moments (no lack of these). It makes full use of a wah-wah riff that sounds apocalyptic musically as well as lyrically. 'Hand of Doom' is the most atmospheric track, and we see the bass take front stage. This includes some of Osbourne's best vocals as well, and he sounds very emotional. Next we have 'Rat Salad', an instrumental written to show off Bill Ward's drumming. Not necessary, but certainly a nice touch, and manages to include some of Iommi's legendary riffs. 'Fairie's Wear Boots' is the humorous closer, with the most drug inspired lyrics on the whole album. We also hear some of Iommi's most inventive guitar work on this track.

So it's not totally progressive, but any open-minded music fan should be able to find a place in their hearts for this essential album. 5 stars by my standards, but since it can't be 'a masterpiece of progressive music' it will have to settle for 4 stars here.

burtonrulez | 4/5 |


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