The Metal Files

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Archive for the ‘black sabbath’ Category

Ghost – Opus Eponymous

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Have you heard Ghost yet?  This new band hails from Sweden.  Doesn’t seem that too much is known about them.  Singer wears a costume and I sort of think this may be a joke band of sorts, like Brujeria.  The flip side to my claim is that it’s definitely a listenable album.  I bought it off of iTunes for $8.91 and have listened to it about 10 times in the last week.  They are very retro 70’s stoner rock sounding and really seeming to take a cue from Blue Oyster Cult.  Lots of simple yet effective vocal harmonies.  It’s not a heavy record but I do like it.  It’s sort of sloppy here and there and sounds very analog.  No heavy distortion or anything like that…think of the Witchcraft albums, it’s got production more like those.  Very stripped down and basic.  Some of the vocal phrasing reminds me a bit of early Mercyful fate as well, which is not a bad thing.

I do find it funny how overtly Satanic their lyrics are.  Just think Eric Bloom singing about his love for the Devil.  haha.

Overall it’s a fun album and I do recommend it.  The USA release comes out soon on CD but as stated before, it’s available pretty cheaply on iTunes.  Get it!  7/10

The vids on YouTube don’t really do them much justice as I think this is an album that needs to be listened to from front to back.


Written by The Metal Files

January 11, 2011 at 11:31 am

My Life With Ozzy

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Having been very familiar with Ozzy from Sabbath, I looked forward to hearing his solo stuff. My brother brought home Blizzard of Ozz in ‘81 and I was a bit surprised how different from Sabbath it was.

Blizzard of Ozz – 1980 (81 in the US)
This is a really good album overall but I never liked Crazy Train and No Bone Movies. Goofy songs. Yes, I know Randy sounded good on both of those but he couldn’t save them. My faves would be Suicide Solution, Mr. Crowley and Steal Away (the Night). Ozzy annoys me with his little noises he does in many of their songs. Like Crazy Train…aye aye aye…or whatever. He’s a doofus. I just never really got into this one.

Diary of a Madman – 1981I think this album is heads and tales better than Blizzard. Better riffs, solos and a tad less goofiness from Ozzy. SATO is my favorite Ozzy song ever. For this album, Flying High Again is probably my least favorite followed up by You Can’t Kill Rock and Roll.

Bark at the Moon – 1983
This was the first Ozzy album I bought with my own money and it will always hold a special place. I adore Jake’s playing on this and have always liked his style better than Randy’s. Ozzy got a little goofy on this one with the title track and Rock and Roll Rebel (retarded lyrics) but the riffs and solos in both songs overshadow the dumb lyrics. I could probably do without So Tired, but whatever. Jake rules.

Ultimate Sin – 1986
Ozzy really should have started getting someone to write lyrics for him by this time. Cripes. Thank God for the Bomb, Secret Loser and Never Know Why are silly, but again, Jake saves the day. Lots of long winded songs on here as well. The production was so thin and tinny. Awful. I am hoping that one day this will get properly remastered. The title track and Shot in the Dark and my faves. Jake is great.

No Rest for the Wicked – 1988
Zakk who? My current guitarist was a finalist to replace Jake in Ozzy’s band and subsequently they chose Zakk. There’s a plethora of tales out there as to how and why Zakk got the gig. My guy was told by Sharon that they chose Zakk over him because he (Doug) wasn’t quite “Randy” enough and that Ozzy needed that again. Doug rehearsed with the whole band a few times before getting the phone call and subsequent letter in the mail. Anyway, as for the album, it took me years to actually get into this one and it’s still not one I listen to often. Lyrically, this album sucks for the most part. My faves would be Breaking All the Rules and Bloodbath in Paradise. I saw this tour and Zakk was an idiot on stage. Ozzy let him speak way too much. He’s an idiot. It was nice to see Geezer though and Castillo was great.

No More Tears – 1993
Side one of the cassette is great. I rarely listen to anything from side 2 besides Hell Raiser. Lemmy saved Ozzy on this one. In general, it’s not a bad album but I rarely listen to it at all.

Ozzmosis and everything after…0/10

Blech.I really wish he’d just go away at this point.

Written by The Metal Files

December 31, 2008 at 1:45 pm

My Life With Black Sabbath

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About the same time my brother was bringing home KISS’ Dressed to Kill, he was also letting me hear Black Sabbath’s Paranoid. The mid-70s were very influential on my becoming a metalhead. Here’s how Sabbath breaks down for me.

Black Sabbath – 1970
This is still one of my favorite Sabbath albums, in the top 3 even. The haunting vocals of the title track are awesome as is the use of the Devil’s tritone chording. NIB is the only song I wish I would never ever hear again. Perhaps radio overplay killed it for me. I don’t really remember liking it that much as a kid either. Ozzy’s voice is clean and has a raw quality to it.

Paranoid – 1970
I catch flack for this all the time, but I really don’t like this album in general. Maybe hearing it all the time growing up killed it for me, I don’t know. Paranoid, Iron Man and War Pigs make me want to puke. Radio overplay again maybe. I guess it’s really those 3 songs that kill this one for me as I do love Planet Caravan, Electric Funeral and Hand of Doom.

Master of Reality – 1971
Sabbath is really starting to hit their stride at this point. Other than Sweet Leaf, I adore this album. The downside to this is that it is starting to make me hate Ozzy’s vocals. One of the things that has annoyed me about him all these years is that he always seems to have to do stuff between normal vocal parts, i.e. “alright now”…”can you hear it”…”yeah”. And it may not be so much what he says, but the frequent nature of it and his annoying whine. But damn, Children of the Grave, Into the Void, After Forever, Lord of this World. Doom! DOOM!
8/10 (blame Sweet leaf for bringing down the score)

Volume 4 – 1972
This is not a bad album overall, but I rarely ever listen to it. I don’t know why that is. Even Changes doesn’t bother me. I have no favorites on this one. I can’t praise it but I can’t dog it out either.

Sabbath Bloody Sabbath – 1973
This is a great one beginning to end although Ozzy’s whiney voice really gets on my nerves. Spiral Architect and National Acrobat are definitely my faves.

Sabotage – 1975
Damn man. That’s a lot of metal from 1970 to 1975. Anyway, this is another one that I rarely listen to. Hole in the Sky and Symptom of the Universe are definitely my faves. There are no stinkers on here.

Technical Ecstasy – 1976
I sometimes like this one and I sometimes hate it. I don’t listen to it often, but I don’t think it sucks. This is definitely an experimental one for Sabbath and I like seeing bands try to stretch their limits a bit. It didn’t really pan out for them here.

Never Say Die – 1978
This was a nice recovery for Sabbath. The title track is great. Overall it’s not a great album, but it has a few shining moments.

Heaven and Hell – 1980
Ladies and gentlemen, Ronnie James Dio. Having heard plenty of Rainbow up, I was familiar with Dio and always loved his voice. This album is brilliant. Sabbath got heavier. This is another of my top 3. There are no bad songs on here. There aren’t really any average songs. It’s just awesome any way you slice it.

The Mob Rules – 1981
Oh man. Things got even better. How is that possible? Don’t ask questions, you doofus. Just listen to the album…over and over. Simply brilliant. Too bad Ronnie left after this one. This is my favorite Sabbath album. My top 3 rotate around sometimes and H&H falls out only to be replaced by the next album on the list…
11/10 (yes, I said 11)

Born Again – 1983
This seems to be an album that people either love or hate, no in betweeners. I personally love it. The addition of Ian Gillan was nice even though his vocals on here are pretty erratic. Trashed is perhaps my favorite Sabbath song ever. The first time I heard it was on the K-Tel metal compilation Masters of Metal (which also featured Rainbow and DIO). Other than the production, this is a great LP. The songs are very weird and very dark.

Seventh Star – 1986
WTF? I never liked this one in general. No Stranger to Love is OK but this just isn’t Sabbath enough for me. Yeah, I know, this was to be a solo album for Tony. Glenn Hughes’ voice annoys me. I don’t like his Deep Purple work either.

The Eternal Idol – 1987
Enter Tony Martin. This is a pretty good album all the way around and I always felt Tony was a good substitute for Dio. The Shining is awesome. It’s not a brilliant LP by any means but it’s worthy of several listens.

Headless Cross – 1989
This is definitely a step up from The Eternal Idol. The addition of Cozy Powell doesn’t hurt. This is a great album beginning to end. I still kick myself in the ass for not going to see this tour when it rolled through Norfolk. Thankfully, I do have that show on CD. Tony Martin sounds awesome on here.

Tyr – 1990An often overlooked album by metal fans. It’s nowhere near the caliber of Headless Cross but it does kick some mighty ass…well, except for It Feels Good to Me. Sorry, that song sometimes makes me nauseous. By the way, Mr. Martin…nice hair. Haha

Dehumanizer – 1992
I’ve never physically owned this one until 2007. Letters To Earth, Sins of the Father, I, Buried Alive. I really wish i hadn’t waited to bother with it. It rocks!

That’s it for me. I never bothered with Cross Purposes or Forbidden.

Written by The Metal Files

December 19, 2008 at 7:36 pm

I Don’t Like Music

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I haven’t been listening to much of it lately. That last thing that caught my ear was Valkyrie’s latest CD, Man Of Two Visions. If you’re into Pentagram, Sabbath et als, pick this up. It’s great. I hope they swing through Texas again.

My friend in Colombia turned me on to Rata Blanca this week. There are a few vids on YouTube. I dig the guy’s voice. The music ranges from mid-80s Deep Purple to basic power metal, but it’s not bad. Oh, it’s all in Spanish so if that bothers you, don’t listen.

But in general, I’ve been disinterested in listening to any music at all lately. I guess it’s just a phase.

Written by The Metal Files

November 6, 2008 at 9:24 pm

The highs and lows of being a metalhead.

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So the doors opened at the venue at 4:30 and I rolled up to it around 3:30. People were parking along the ditchline off the travelway so I followed suit as the gates weren’t open.

A cop rolls by after we had been waiting for about 30 minutes and was broadcasting the message that if we didn’t move we were going to be ticketed blah blah blah. So some people were moving out of line to go ride around and I just moved up a little closer as it was only one cop. As soon as about half of the cars had turned around and got out of line, they opened the gate and I got a spot right next to the venue.

So I’m in line and security comes by and says all cameras must be left in the car, so about 50% of us went back to our cars and put them away. Sorry, no pics or videos. Some people still got some in but oh well. It wasn’t worth the potential hassle.

My seat was on the outer edge of the first elevated seats and it was starting to rain a little. It wasn’t windy so I never really got any water on me. Jason McMaster bought my spare ticket and sat with me for the first 2 bands. The girl that was on the other side of me was drunk and wouldn’t stop talking to me during Testament or Motorhead so I finally just said, “I’ll be glad to talk to you AFTER their sets are over…Right now I want to hear them, not you.”

So, Testament comes on and sounded great. Chuck Billy’s voice was powerful and clean, much better than when I saw him in 2000 which wasn’t bad either. Their set was cut short as Disciples of the Watch wasn’t in there. They only did 6 songs and their set was about 25 minutes. They sounded great though.

Motorhead hits the stage and I swear I have no idea what the first song was, it didn’t sound like Dr. Rock which is what they’ve been opening with lately. This is what I can remember, there may have been one more. Their set seemed short as well.

Stay Clean
Be My Baby
In The Name Of Tragedy
Going To Brazil
Killed By Death
Ace Of Spades

They sounded great and Lemmy’s voice surprised me quite a bit. He sounded much better than the last 3 shows I had seen. Campbell looks terrible lately, like a cancer patient. Mikkey’s drumming was great as usual but the drum solo bored me senseless.

So, between Motorhead and Sabbath, McMaster gets a call from a buddy and tells me he’ll be right back. He comes back with an unused backstage pass and a ticket for the orchestra seating area. He said, “Go meet Lemmy, I’m going to the 5th row to see Dio.” Sweet! I go over to the backstage gate and the guy looks at my pass and says that it’s a no go. Apparently the pass was for an earlier meet and greet and I never got backstage. Sabbath had just finished their second song as I was just about to walk back to my original seat. My friend Amber comes from backstage with a Priest VIP pass. She handed it to me and said “Go met Priest.” Sweet! No go…again. Their session was over.

So I went back to my seat, enjoyed Sabbath, called Ouro and wished him Merry Christmas. Dio’s voice was also in tip top shape. He sounded better than he did in NYC last year. No cheating of any higher notes that I noticed. He just wailed like only he can do. Iommi and Geezer were their same stoic badassed selves. Appice sucks. ZZZZZZZZZZZZ

Their set was simliar to this:

01. E5150
02. The Mob Rules
03. Children of the Sea
04. I
05. Sign of the Southern Cross
06. Ear in the Wall
07. Vinny Appice Solo
08. Time Machine
09. Falling off the Edge of the World
10. Die Young
11. Heaven and Hell (extended)
12. Neon Knights

They seemed shortened too, though. It went by so quickly.

So after Sabbath finished their set, I left. Never heard one note of Priest being played.

Next week I may be seeing Alice Cooper, Dangerous Toys and Yngwie in Houston.

Written by The Metal Files

August 25, 2008 at 3:46 am