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50 Years Ago Today BLACK SABBATH Released “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath”
It was 50 years ago today, December 1st 1973 that Black Sabbath released Sabbath Bloody Sabbath.
The album marked the band's fifth consecutive platinum selling album in the United States. It reached number four on the UK charts, and number eleven in the US. In the UK, it was the first Black Sabbath album to attain Silver certification (60,000 units sold) by the British Phonographic Industry, achieving this in February 1975. The album would go on to be regarded in high esteem by the band members themselves; when asked by Guitar for the Practicing Musician in 1994 which songs he would like to see on the upcoming Black Sabbath box set, Butler replied:
"Probably anything off of Sabbath Bloody Sabbath. The song "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" itself. It was a whole new era for us. We felt really open on that album. It was a great atmosphere, good time, great coke! Just like a new birth for me. We had done the first four albums and done it that way. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath was like Part Two of your life. It was a weird feeling; a good feeling." In his memoir, Iommi calls the album "the pinnacle".
The song "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" has been singled out for praise by many hard rock and heavy metal guitar players, with Slash from Guns N' Roses stating to Guitar World in 2008:
"The outro to 'Sabbath Bloody Sabbath' is the heaviest shit I have ever heard in my life. To this day, I haven't heard anything as heavy that has as much soul."
Brent Hinds of Mastodon agrees, telling Nick Bowcott in 2008:
"The 'dreams turn to nightmares, Heaven turns to Hell' riff at the end of that song is unbeatable."
Kirk Hammett of Metallica cites "Killing Yourself to Live" as his favourite Black Sabbath song, revealing in the Holiday 2008 issue of Guitar World that:
"A lot of people gravitate toward the album's title track, 'Sabbath Bloody Sabbath', but for me this is the stand out cut on the album."
Metallica would later cover "Sabbra Cadabra" on their 1998 covers album, Garage Inc.
As posted on the Tony Iommi website: