In the year 1970 Black Sabbath’s self titled debut was published. Recorded in two days and with a budget of around 1000 dollars I think. The album reached position 9 in the british charts but with their second album they made their real breakthrough into the first league of rock music. The fathers of doom were born. Til now a special scene expanded copying or developing the sound of Black Sabbath. Think about Black Widow, Candlemass or Saint Vitus.
But the debut album contains some of the best songs Black Sabbath ever published. First of all the title track. Nothing can show the dark vibes of the band better than the intro with church bells in a stormy night with thunder and lightning. On top the demonic voice of Ozzy and the lyrics „What is his that stands before me, figure in black that points at me“. You cannot describe the music of Black Sabbath better. Dark…scary…satanic. This is more than a song…this is the band. Also the following track becam classics later, long time played in the band’s liveshows. „The Wizard“ with the nice harmonica support for the cracking riffs nearly blowing the listeners out of their rooms.
Mystic and dark „Behind the Walls of Sleep“ creeps out of the speakers. Again the vocals sound conspiratorial and demonical and are getting stronger with the deep pumping bass and the sagging drums. „N.I.B.“ hits like the same. Lyrics like „My name is Lucifer, please take my hand“ show you the way. Combined with Iommi’s powerful guitar and Ozzy’s mystical tunes. Only one is able to perform that…and his name is Osbourne.
Against this „Evile Woman“ is easier arranged and cannot keep the class of the first four songs. The refrain is too simple and too often repeated. „Sleeping Village“ than brings you back in foggy autumn nights to the graveyard. In the mid part of this song Iommi plays the best guitar solo of the whole album before the band slow it all down again. The second part is titled „The Warning“ and track 7 of the album. This song is the most diversified one and variies in loudness and tempo all the time. Again and again surprising breaks shows the song’s changing face. 10 minutes extreme worthy to listen to.
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- Black Sabbath
- The Wizard
- Behind the Wall of Sleep
- Evil Woman
- Sleeping Village
- Wicked World
Release Date: 1970
Label: Vertigo Records
Points: 9,5 / 10
Review by Kerbinator
„Wicked World“ ends the album. I leave this song uncommented cause of the lots of classic and strong song this album contains. So…it doesn’t matter.
Black Sabbath with Ozzy Osbourne on highest level set their first milestone early with their first album that even decades later sounds fresh and timeless. And it hopefully will bring joy to the next generations too.