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Black Sabbath - Technical Ecstasy CD (album) cover


Black Sabbath


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2.78 | 370 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
3 stars After a couple of impressive albums, with TE, Sabbath hit a lower mark (and no just according to me) and would enter a rather negative slide that would last most of the second half of the 70's. Heavy drugs used by Ozzy and Ward were lessening their health and provoked erratic behaviours on stage and it affected truly the studio album's quality as well. And it sounds like it. Of course, all bands that come up with a few brilliant albums in their early career are bound to come up with lesser works in their next few albums, as their original and innovating ideas reserves dwindles, their inspiration wane or even completely fade as albums continue to pop up. A notable change is the non-black album sleeve, with that strange and slightly sexual escalator Hipgnosis artwork.

Not everything is that dark, though as Iommi (and to a lesser extent Butler) tries to hold the ship afloat with his still-excellent guitar work, and the continued presence of keyboards does provide some (sometimes surprising) variety, like the calmer It's Allright, but it does not automatically mean that it's all that good either. There are even a couple of tracks that are worth the detour (but not the price of admission), such as the almost-brilliant 6-mins+ You Won't Change Me, All Moving Parts or even the almost-delicate She's Gone. But a big part of the album is filled with some heavy unrefined rock tracks, like the opening Backstreet Kids, RnR Doctor, Gypsy and the closing Dirty Women. As the track titles unwittingly demonstrate, you'll easily guess that the lyrics are really not a strength in this album.

To their fans, if albums such as TE and NSD were clearly not as good as their previous efforts, Technical Ecstasy is often relatively unfairly maligned; because the album has a better production (the bass is much more audible than in SBS or 'Tage) and with still a few honest tracks. I'd say that TE suffers from the following lacklustre NSD's chronological proximity.

Sean Trane | 3/5 |


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