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Black Sabbath
The End
February 2016
Released: 2016, Self Released
Rating: 2.0/5
Reviewer: Aaron Yurkiewicz

Cardinal Rule: If you have leftovers from a major album recording session that weren’t good enough to make the final cut, they probably don’t need to be released. That goes for any band, whether you’re an up and comer in the studio for the first time or if you’re Black Sabbath. ESPECIALLY if you’re Black Sabbath.



Remember all that talk about 13 being the Sabs’ final album, first number one, going out on a high note? JK – not really, the coda to the recorded legacy of Black Sabbath is an EP of yawn (and sometimes cringe) inducing leftovers with some hastily assembled live tracks. THE END is a limited release EP that’s currently only being sold at stops across the band’s final tour. It’s not available on streaming sites and links on YouTube have quickly disappeared in what could be viewed as an attempt to preserve the ‘members only’ quality of the release. Or, it’s an attempt to protect potential buyers from spoiling how mediocre the studio tracks are to keep the buzz positive and the cash registers ringing.



“Season of the Dead” opens thunderously with a slow moving, classic Iommi riff. Quickly settling into a bland, mid-tempo shrug, Ozzy invokes images of war and its horrors in supposed homage to “War Pigs”. There’s no real excitement in the tune, and at over 7 minutes, it rambles for way too long. “Cry All Night” rides a thick, chugging wah groove that’s marred by silly lyrics (“drop down on your knees and cry all night”). The mid-section melody sounds awfully close to the opening line from “God is Dead?”, which makes me wonder if one tune evolved from the other. “Take Me Home” sounds exactly like a staccato version of “Cry All Night”, but has a gorgeous acoustic guitar piece towards the end (a rarity in Sabbath tracks). The riffs in “Isolated Man” mimic the same mid-tempo chug of the two previous tunes and lyrically it comes across as a first person POV of the guy in “Loner”. But man, as an all-too-serious Ozzy croons “I like being alone, I like to stay in my room all day and night, don’t like to talk on the phone…”, I honestly groaned out loud. It’s 2016 Oz, nobody likes to talk on the phone anymore. This is from the same band that summoned visions of generals gathering in their masses and of children starting to march?



The live tracks are pulled from various shows from 2014 and sound surprisingly untouched – good, bad, or otherwise. Ozzy sings in whatever key he stumbles into while the rest of the band soldiers on, and if anything proves how much punch up work went into his performance on 13. “Under the Sun” is the standout exception here; all of the stars aligned on that tune and remind you what a powerful entity Black Sabbath has been.



I don’t think that anybody was actively asking for THE END, and those who may have – be careful what you wish for, you might just get it. THE END won’t do anything to negatively impact the Black Sabbath brand – at this stage of the game, you’ve likely already made up your mind about how you feel. At best, it confirms that now is indeed the right time for Osbourne, Iommi, and Butler to walk away.
Track Listing

1. Season of the Dead
2. Cry All Night
3. Take Me Home
4. Isolated Man
5. God is Dead? (Live)
6. Under the Sun (Live)
7. End of the Beginning (Live)
8. Age of Reason (Live)

Lineup

Ozzy Osbourne – Vocals
Tony Iommi – Guitar
Geezer Butler – Bass
Brad Wilk – Drums (1-4)
Tommy Clufetos – Drums (5-8)
Adam Wakeman – Keyboards (5-8)

Other reviews

» Reunion
by Edited by EvilG

» Black Box: The Complete Original Black Sabbath 1970-1978 (Box Set)
by Lord of the Wasteland

» Mob Rules (Expanded Deluxe Edition)
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» Classic Albums: Paranoid (DVD)
by Robert Williams

» Seventh Star (Expanded Deluxe Edition)
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» The Eternal Idol (Expanded Deluxe Edition)
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» Born Again (Expanded Deluxe Edition)
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» 13
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» 13
by Erich

» The End
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» The End DVD/CD
by Robert Williams

» The End
by Celtic Bob


Next review: » Black Sabbath - The End
Previous review: » Black Sabbath - Seventh Star (Expanded Deluxe Edition)

Black Sabbath
The End
January 2018
Released: 2017, Eagle Rock Ent.
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Celtic Bob

A band that needs no introduction….

BLACK SABBATH



Four guys from Birmingham that helped invent Heavy Metal end their career (well, THREE of them) where they started. For me, Sabbath is one of those iconic bands that require the original members for it to work. Without those four guys, something is missing and in this case it’s Bill Ward. You may say “He’s just a drummer” but he was part of the groove. I liken it to AC/DC without Phil, just not the same.



Soon as I got my CD I put it on and turned it up. I enjoyed hearing each and every song as I love the band. Every performance sounded great but something just wasn’t right. It sounded a little too perfect. Was it altered in the studio after the fact? Did the mighty Sabbath release a ‘Live Studio’ album? Was it something more? I believe it mostly to be the latter. Yes they may have fixed a few things in the studio but I think the issue is due to the fact that it is not the original four. I have stated on my social media account that Sabbath are Ozzy, Geezer, Tony AND Bill. I fully believe they should have at least had him perform at the last show. The fans at least deserve that much, I think. That aside, this is an enjoyable CD from beginning to end and I will be purchasing the Blu-Ray in the near future so I can see the mighty Sabbath as I was not privileged enough to see them in concert.



Yes, the CD is fantastic.

Yes, the performance is fantastic.

Yes, Bill IS missed.

Yes, you need to own this.



All hail……

SABBATH BLOODY SABBATH!
Track Listing

Disc: 1
1. Black Sabbath
2. Fairies Wear Boots
3. Under The Sun / Every Day Comes And Goes
4. After Forever
5. Into The Void
6. Snowblind
7. Band Intros
8. War Pigs
9. Behind The Wall Of Sleep
10. Bassically / N.I.B.

Disc: 2
1. Hand Of Doom
2. Supernaut / Sabbath Bloody Sabbath / Megalomania
3. Rat Salad / Drum Solo
4. Iron Man
5. Dirty Women
6. Children Of The Grave
7. Paranoid

Lineup

Ozzy Osbourne (vocals)
Tony Iommi (guitar)
Geezer Butler (bass)
Tommy Clufetos (drums)
Adam Wakeman (keyboards / guitar)

Contact

N/A

Other reviews

» Reunion
by Edited by EvilG

» Black Box: The Complete Original Black Sabbath 1970-1978 (Box Set)
by Lord of the Wasteland

» Mob Rules (Expanded Deluxe Edition)
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» Classic Albums: Paranoid (DVD)
by Robert Williams

» Seventh Star (Expanded Deluxe Edition)
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» The Eternal Idol (Expanded Deluxe Edition)
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» Born Again (Expanded Deluxe Edition)
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» 13
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» 13
by Erich

» The End
by Aaron Yurkiewicz

» The End DVD/CD
by Robert Williams

» The End
by Celtic Bob


Next review: » Black Sabbath - The End DVD/CD
Previous review: » Black Sabbath - Seventh Star (Expanded Deluxe Edition)





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