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Black Sabbath - Sabbath Bloody Sabbath CD (album) cover


Black Sabbath


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4.13 | 806 ratings

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Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Black Sabbath´s fifth studio album is their best and the most progressive of their discography, at least up to this point. It was a truly remarkable album that showed both critics and public they really were better musicians and songwriters than most people thought (including fans) or cared. There were already glimpses of their skills on earlier releases, most notably on Vol. 4, but on Sabbath Bloody Sabbath they really surfaced as a very versatile, strong and accomplished band.

Most prog fans here make a point of noting that Rick Wakeman plays on the album so to give the CD a kind of prog credential. Unfortunatly for those who were not curious enough to dig some more information, Wakeman plays only on one single track (piano and synth on Sabbra Cadabra). All of other keyboards duties are handled by band members Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler. Some reviewers insist on the old legend that Wakeman is the one behind Who Are You´s tasteful keyboard lines, but all involved have denied that claim through several interviews during the years. it is like som ecould not believe Ionni or Butler were not talented enough to do such job! Iommi specially is quite proeminent here, playing a nice piano and Harpsichord(!) on the instrumental Fluff and adding great flute licks on Living For Today. Not bad for a guy who has already being called ´riffmaster´!

Production is way better than earlier releases and some orchestral arrangements help enhance more progressive experiments on songs like Spiral Architect. Of course the band is not really symphonic, but clearly had expanded the bounderies of heavy music like very few others did, before or since. And on this particular CD they are at their peak, both as writers and players. There is not one single filler in the entire album. Of course some tracks are better than others, but that´s more to do about personal tastes than any song flaws.

Even if some earlier stuff had more proto metal classics than this one, Sabbath Bloody Sabbath is their masterpiece in rock music as a whole. They proved they could deliver a fine work of art and that heavy music could be really progressive. Varied and very well crafted, this album impressed me a lot in a time my heroes were Yes and Genesis. Most radical progheads at the time had the same reaction. Black Sabbath and Deep Purple proved prog and heavy were not so far apart as it seemed at the beginning.

Classic album, a masterpiece of prog music (even if it is heavy prog!). 5 stars.

Tarcisio Moura | 5/5 |


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