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Paranoid

Black Sabbath

1970

Paranoid
Album Summary

Paranoid is the second studio album by English heavy metal band Black Sabbath, released in September 1970 through Vertigo Records in England and Warner Bros. Records in the US. The album contains several of the band's signature songs, including "Iron Man", "War Pigs" and the title track, which was the band's only Top 20 hit, reaching number 4 in the UK charts. In a 2017 publication by Rolling Stone magazine Paranoid ranked number one on its list of the "100 Greatest Metal Albums of All Time". The album is often cited a key influence for the development of the heavy metal music genre as well as one of the earliest heavy metal albums. Paranoid was the band's only album to top the UK Albums Chart until the release of 13 in 2013.

Wikipedia

Rating

4.16

Votes

8524
Genres
Metal

Reviews

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Mon May 03 2021
5

Easiest 5 stars I've ever given. Before even listening I know - but this is one of the first albums I became attached to as a kid. Every track is perfect. Other bands paved the way, but Sabbath actively invented heavy metal. I think it could also be argued the song "Electric Funeral" alone also spawned an entire sub-genre of 'sludge' bands and eventually made the term 'Sabbath Clone' its own descriptor as bands tried to re-create it. || I've always loved the bass in this album, and obviously Iommi and Ozzy do great guitar/vocals - but on this listen, it was the first time I realized how truly incredible the drums are! Bill Ward always felt like a Sabbath afterthought to me, but listening more intently to the drums throughout, especially on the back half of the album, it's clear he's just as important a part of Sabbath's success. Perfect from top to bottom.

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Wed Aug 25 2021
5

“Paranoid” by Black Sabbath (1970) When I listened to this as a teenager, my moral superiors were scandalized that I was sinfully indulging an embrace of the satanic. They were ignorant. This is not evil proudly standing as evil. This is evil as a genre pointing to the good, in the classic, gothic sense. “War Pigs” excoriates the fomenters of mass destruction, likening them to workers of the dark arts (It is Satan, not God, who laughs at their vain appeals for mercy before divine judgment). “Paranoid” is the empathy-evoking lament of a man losing his mind. “Planet Caravan” is morally neutral pagan sci-fi. “Iron Man”, also sci-fi, is a morality tale about the deadly potential of technology turned against us. “Electric Funeral” is simply apocalypse. “Hand of Doom” and “Fairies Wear Boots” are poetic sermons warning against the use of drugs (Would that he had heeded his own message). What’s not to like? You uninformed cultural moralists need to get off your high horse. While the prophetic voice in this message is rather too simplified, it’s not nearly as graphic as some portions of Sacred Scripture (slowly read Deuteronomy 28:47-57 before proceeding to The Lamentations of Jeremiah and the Revelation of St. John). Call me if you need counseling. The aesthetic question here is whether the mood of the message properly harmonizes with the mood of the music. Boy, does it. It is dark. It is heavy. It is horror harnessed in sound. Tony Iommi is one of the greatest guitarists of all time. If you want to play guitar like Iommi, all you have to do is cut off the ends of the first two fingers of your fretboard hand, and use homemade prosthetics and banjo strings in order to compensate. Simple. The pain of that horrible experience might just give you a sense of what a guitar can accomplish as a conveyor of human passion. Feedback and sustain on power chords (“War Pigs”, “Iron Man”) provide space and invite reflection, and exquisitely colorful lead riffs and solos amaze the listener. Jazz solo lines in the outro of “Planet Caravan” are exemplary for dynamic fluctuation and improvisation. Anybody can play the groove chords on “Iron Man”. But nobody can play them like Tony Iommi. Ozzy Osbourne has precisely the right voice for conveying these lyrics and melodies. He has a strong, snarly voice, and pitch control is a secondary concern. He understands the power of the emphatic consonant. Bill Ward’s heavy drums, with masterfully synchronized fills, provide fearsome rhythms and a fine solo break (in “Rat Salad”). And Geezer Butler’s virtuosity on electric bass set a standard for metal music, mastering the art of ‘pairing’ bass and electric rhythm without simple aping. Listen to how Butler’s pulsing bass vibrates the rattle wires of Ward’s snare drum on the intro to “Hand of Doom”. The engineers intentionally didn’t correct it. Masterful. Listen to this album. Today. Remove your hat; you’re in the presence of rock nobility. 5/5

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Sat Feb 20 2021
5

So this was the first album I ever bought at 13. To say my mother was disappointed that I stopped binge-listening her Tom Jones and Sadler & Young albums to binge-listen Black Sabbath is an understatement. I first hear it when an older brother of a friend played it for us. So heavy, dark & riff-centric. For me, all hard rock that came after paled by comparison. I read a review of this album about 10 years ago and the guy said just ignore Ozzy (happily) and the heavy guitar and listen to nothing but the bass and drums and you will get a better idea of what a great band they were. I see this is the 7th highest ranked 1001 album so I will not resist.

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Thu Apr 01 2021
5

SHAAARRONNNN. Three obvious big fat classic riffs in War Pigs, Paranoid and Iron Man but pretty sick how they can also pull off Planet Caravan in the middle of it all. I think Electric Funeral is my highlight though, can hear heaps of gizz and ORB.

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Wed Jun 23 2021
5

Put me in a time machine and let me go back to 1970 and hear this for the first time and see others reactions. What a time that must have been. An absolute heavy metal and rock classic from start to finish.

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Mon Feb 08 2021
5

Classic metal album, unexpected jazziness on some songs, others are well known

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Mon May 03 2021
5

Quoting Rob’s mix-tape rules from the movie Hi Fidelity: “You gotta kick it off with a killer to take attention, and then you gotta kick it up a notch. But you don’t wanna blow your wad, so then you gotta cool it down a notch. There are a lotta rules.” - even though ‘Paranoid’ is not a mix, it nails that form spot on - ‘War Pigs’ is the best song on the album, and then it gets better with ‘Paranoid’. ‘Planet Caravan’ is still a closet favorite which I love playing to the Metal uninformed - “This is Back Sabbath?”. It all works - galloping, locomotive bass and drums, ominous guitars and Ozzy. They convey the emotions of the disillusioned industrial youth that they are. Love the lyrics throughout. ‘War Pigs’ could have been written 3000 years ago. This album and their eponymous debut album were released within six months of each other, which still amazes me. These albums changed Rock music forever. Doesn’t get much better. 5+ stars

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Wed Aug 25 2021
5

Probably the most influential metal album of them all, and arguably the greatest collection of metal songs on a single record. War Pigs, Paranoid, Iron man and that’s just the opening three tracks. More focused and cohesive than its predecessor Toni Iommi’s ability to write a riff is unrivalled and Ozzy’s vocals are so simple but so incredibly effective, while the inimitable Bill Ward and Geezer Butler show why they are as under-appreciated as they are accomplished.

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Mon Oct 18 2021
5

10/15 Raw as all hell. Standout Tracks: Planet Caravan, Iron Man, Electric Funeral, Hand of Doom

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Tue Jan 04 2022
5

More of a blues rock album than I expected. Some really great technique on display. The compositions are simple but effective, and the repetitiveness serves the themes of the album well. The instrumentalists are super together all the time, they play well with one another. Bill Ward especially kills it on this album.

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Mon Jan 17 2022
5

An obvious metal masterpiece. Dark, intense, slow, ambient. Everything that a good stoner metal album could be

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Thu Oct 01 2020
5

Possibly the best early heavy metal albums. 10/10

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Thu Jul 01 2021
5

Correct me if I'm wrong but this is one of the greatest album ever recorded.

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Sat Feb 13 2021
5

When I first met Luke in a crowded Bot garden. Sandwiched between Laura and Jenny and opposite himself, I accidentally made out I was a massive metal head by talking to him solely about Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin. That man was no liar. 8 tracks of pure godly tunes.

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Sat Feb 13 2021
5

So fucking tight. Riffs for days. Can’t wait to drink a few rockshores and drift away to planet caravan.

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Mon Mar 15 2021
5

ground breaking stunning album.

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Fri Jan 29 2021
5

War Pigs is a huge opening track and sets the tone for a genre defining album. Rifftastic Iommi with the unchained brilliance of Ozzie. A match made in metal heaven.

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Tue May 25 2021
5

Such a great album. These guys were ahead of their time. You can see where so many future bands got their influences from.

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Mon Sep 13 2021
5

Ох, это же Блэк Сабат Гитары звучат сочно. Слышно каждую ноту, плотно. War Pigs - ох какой соляк! У баса интересная партия тоже. Теперь я понимаю, за что любят Томи Айоми. У него просто ахерительные рифы и вкусные соляки. Paranoid - тут всё понятно Planet Caravan - вау, вот это перкуссия! Раньше я слушал только кавер Пантеры на эту песню, оригинал вообще другой. Бас всё так же творит чудо, гитара потихоньку подыгрывает, дополняя атмосферу. Интересно звучат соло Томми (уже в трех песнях подряд), они звучат сухо, практически без эффектов. Слышно лишь короткую реверберацию. Но эта реверберация создает невероятную глубину в песне. Iron Man - классика хэви метала) Опять же гитара звучит очень собранно и хрустяще. Есть непопадания, когда после паузы все немного играют мимо, но почему-то это не звучит как что-то прям очень плохое. Типа трушно, что-ли. Хм, концовка очень интересная, только сейчас обратил внимание на неё. Electric Funeral - Оззи снова не парится и поёт в унисон с гитарой Томми) КАК ЖЕ ОФИГИТЕЛЬНО ЗВУЧАТ ЭТИ ГИТАРЫ! Во всех песнях! Hand of Doom - барабаны очень панчевые, слышится каждая атака. Rat Salad - похоже на импровизацию. Барабанное соло драйвовое. Fairies Wear Boots - как всегда крутые рифы Томми Айоми. Интересно меняется ритм на протяжении всей песни. Хорошее закрытие альбома. ---- Буду ли я переслушивать этот альбом? ДА.

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Fri Sep 24 2021
5

This album is great because it also contains the 1001 greatest guitar riffs you must listen to

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Mon Nov 15 2021
5

What's to say about this album that hasn't already been said? A great trip from start to finish. I think when I was younger I wasn't a big fan of Planet Caravan but I love the trippy groove of that track now and it makes a good bridge from Paranoid to Iron Man. On side two It feel like Electric Funeral pays an homage to early Pink Floyd with the vocal melody at the beginning.

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Sat Jan 22 2022
5

A stone cold classic. I actually like it BECAUSE the guitar relys more on tone than on histrionics. The first half is incredible from War Pigs through Iron Man its one classic after another. I especially the moody Planet Caravan. The second half can get a little heavy handed, but not enough to dim the status as an all time metal classic; 5 stars.

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Tue Jan 25 2022
5

5/5 While metal wasn’t invented by a single artist or band, Black Sabbath did bring together a blueprint that is referenced to this day. This album is fun to listen to and full of that dark energy you are looking for when listening to metal, without feeling obscene or “evil” just for the sake of sounding that way. The Heavy and distorted riffs and Ozzie’s iconic voice are of course great but listening to the drums and bass specifically show that they help support the band just as much as everything else. Of course the big three hits are amazing but the rest of the tracks are great listens as well. I enjoyed “Planet Caravans” slow paced spacey feeling (the traveling bongos are fun), “Electric Funeral” has intense imagery in the lyrics and really brings forward the bass and drums, and “Rat Salad” is a fun jam session and drum solo. I guess I’d say that “Fairies Wear Boots” is the weak point of the album for me but that’s not saying much as it isn’t a bad listen. Fav Tracks: No point in choosing

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Tue Jan 25 2022
5

Never considered myself a fan of metal but I can appreciate the genre because of albums such as this. Going through the lyrics of some of these songs shows them talking about generational topics (such as war pigs with them referencing, I’m assuming, Vietnam), to having an abstract story (Iron Man). Musically, everything from the guitars to the vocals made this album an absolute banger. The simple replay-ability of this album gives it a 5, no contest.

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Mon Feb 07 2022
5

Grandma Died On This Day. Allh Yar7em El Fey9a

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Mon Mar 14 2022
5

Anthony, Andrew, and I took some mushrooms and tripped hard to an early Sabbath concert where Ozzy still had youth in his face that he hadn't destroyed with drugs yet. Then we turned on a Tom Jones record, and watched a industrial crusher destroy a bunch of toys on YouTube. We laughed our heads off. This record is still one of the most imitated, but never duplicated. Lightning stuck hard with this one. Favorite tracks: "Iron Man", "Faeries Wear Boots", "Electric Funeral"

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Tue Jun 27 2023
5

Out of all albums that I love this is one of the most pesimistic when it comes to lyrics. Great, dynamic, atmospheric music with hypnotizing Ozzy's vocals make perfect match. Depressing lyrics make this whole experience hit different. One moment You want to jump to great riff, couple of seconds later you are dragged to the bottom with apocaliptic visions. One of my favourites. 6/5

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Fri Oct 08 2021
4

How I wish I'd gone to that Black Sabbath concert on May 5, 1982. I guess it only took 40 years to realize that. I was scared away at the time. How was I to know with everyone freaking out at the time? Good grief, this review will be more obscene than the album is. How can you not go, "Fuck yeah!" through this whole album? It's the "War Pigs" that are satanic! Fuck, yeah! What is this freaky, spacey, awesome sound in "Planet Caravan"? Fuck, yeah! Oh my God, that riff in "Iron Man" is so epic that we're going to play it and sing to it over and over for five and half minutes and never get tired of it. (When you look up "Riff" in Wikipedia, this is the riff that illustrates what a riff is. Fuck, yeah!) I went batshit when that voice that kind of sounds like Animal from the Muppets chanted "Electric Funeral! Electric Funeral" Fuck, yeah! When "Hand of Doom" slowly, creepily builds and builds to "Now you're gonna die!" Fuck, yeah! (Well, maybe not "yeah" except that it's definitely not glamorizing drug abuse, so, okay, fuck, yeah!) I will never get tired of the title "Rat Salad." Fuck, yeah. The album so far has dealt with war, depression, the end of the world (twice), and drug abuse, and ends with "Fairy with boots and dancing with a dwarf." Fuck. Yeah. (Granted it might have had to do with the "smokin' and trippin'" but as the album ends, "Yeah!") I had to giggle a few times when the lyrics really struggled to fit the rhythm "Ca-an he-e see-e, or is he blind?" and then I laughed again when I realized it sounded like Jack Black was singing, but I felt like a goddamn badass pulling up to work with it blaring on my car stereo and now I finally get it all.

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Wed Nov 10 2021
4

Staple thrash metal infused with riveting use of stylistic bar variations and impactful guitar riffs. Ozzy Osbourne's immediacy in his vocals create intangible catharsis for the record. Cohesive and a CHB, 'Paranoid' (album) is instantly recognizable to many listeners alike regardless of genre.

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Thu Apr 15 2021
3

Disappointing! War Pigs and Paranoid together made a tremendously strong, energetic start from out the outset, but all my enthusiasm was lost by the time Iron Man came on—at which point the album descended into lyrics that were edgy but shallow, and settled into that unfortunate aimless, rambly guitar/drum combo that seems to have dominated rock in the years prior. An easy five stars if the momentum had carried through, but as it stands, three is being generous. Recommended season: Winter

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Thu Sep 02 2021
2

I don't expect anything I have to say is fresh, partly because this is well-trodden ground and partly because there's not much to talk about. That's not as negative as it sounds, just recognition that one of Sabbath's main virtues is recapitualating proof of concept that rock music can be chunked and stacked into songs like cheese cubes on a toothpick. I really like that bit of their music. They're very good at it. Riffs atops drum rolls atop looming bass atop screeching vocals. If they weren't, I wouldn't recognise so many of these (Kanye borrows the Iron Man riff for Hell of a Life, huh?) without ever having heard the album. My issues are (I warned you this wouldn't be original) that while all they want to do is rock (so far so good) they don't have much to rock around. A robin, a jailhouse, a clock--music is stuffed to the gunnels with things around which one can orbit. They've supposedly got weirdness, paranoia, satanism or whatever. But do they? Because despite their image, there's nothing especially evocative or atmospheric going on here. They could just as easily be singing about the best time to zest an orange (once it's hardened, I'm told, as that means the juice has moved from the innards to the outards) without causing much dissonance. Of course, ideas aren't a requirement in great music. I can listen to Franco Luamba or James Brown all day without giving too many shits about what they're saying. But that brings us to my other issue, which is that those guys have got rhythm, groove, funk and soul that's ass-bustingly transcendent, while Sabbath only have their cheese on a stick, and that can only get you so far.

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Sun Jan 24 2021
5

A Rat Salad away from absolute perfection FT: Can I really choose? OK. I will. A tie between Planet Caravan and Paranoid. 9/10

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Tue Oct 27 2020
5

Clássico ignorado por mim e que supreendeu demais pelos riffs e vocais. Ouvir mais vezes

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Sat Mar 27 2021
5

Great album full with big hits and great songs

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Tue Feb 09 2021
5

Badass. So cool. Bluesy, infant metal.

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Sat Jan 16 2021
5

I rocked out so hard I almost drove my car into a ditch

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Wed Feb 03 2021
5

Great album. Always forget how mellow and melodic it is.

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Fri Jan 29 2021
5

Ideal type of rock music I'd listen to when in the mood. Great stuff.

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Thu Jan 14 2021
5

Awesome. 10/10 every song is awesome.

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Fri Feb 19 2021
5

Natuurlijk geweldig album, de start van de metal en altijd legendarisch.

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Fri Jun 25 2021
5

almost every song on this album is perfect, in so many ways, really incredibly great music 🥲

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Sat Feb 13 2021
5

This is a bit ‘welcome to my twisted mind’ but I fucking loved it. 5 Big Ones

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Mon May 24 2021
5

Qué puta belleza. Quiero decir que es gracias a este ejercicio que neta me doy el tiempo de escuchar con calma y atención a black sabbath que por algún extraño prejuicio consideraba música del montón. Es un puto discazo de principio a fin, y no sé si me gustan más los riffs de guitarra o los solos de batería pero la puta madre. Y qué carajos con planet caravan? cómo una rolita así de suave entra tan perfecto en un disco de metal progresivo. Putos genios.

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Fri Mar 26 2021
5

Imagine putting this on for its first spin back in the day. Planet Caravan is a bit of a rad piano diversion from the rest of the album

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Mon Feb 08 2021
5

Su aparición en aquel aclamado juego Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock me hizo conocerlos jajaja no se si salieron en otros pero ahí conocí paranoid y la de Iron man que chuladaaaaaa.... buen glugluneees

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

How is it so heavy for 1970?!?!

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Fri Jan 29 2021
5

Pretty good indeed. Side 2 is particularly strong.

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Sat Feb 13 2021
5

Give it 5 stars or I'll get ye

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Sun Jul 18 2021
5

Sí me gustó la vrd, jamás le había dado chance a escuchar mucho de esta banda salvo Paranoid que no me logró atrapar y otros pares de canciones que me habían pasado desapercibidas. Chistoso, fantasioso, brujesco y apocalíptico. Un disco poco relatable, nada sentimental, lo cual es refrescante, si bien ahora suena graciosisimo, supongo que en la época era dark. Según lei en la Wikipedia la primera canción se iba a llamar Walpurgis, pero la disquera dijo que no porque sonaba muy satánico (aunque según entiendo todo este performance de los nombres místicos era un pedo más como en la punk-politics-related ondita en vez de ocultista, lo cual fue bummer pa mi), así que, cuál niños regañados, le tuvieron que cambiar el nombre, lel. Pues, yo no soy quien pa afirmar esto, pero pa mi que sí que se nota mucho la influencia que han tenido en el metal hasta nuestros días estos dudes (sobre todo en el famoso stoner metal con el cual estoy muy poco familiarizado, pero dizque yo todas las bandas de ese género suenan a una digi-evolución de Black Sabbathh). Fav: Electrical Funeral porque tiene un inicio que sí suena a que va a empezar una invocación con las fuerzas del maligno. Mood: Este Iron Man cae mejor que el de marvel porque es bien loser y nadie lo quiere ajajaa

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Tue Mar 23 2021
5

I may be more of a Black Sabbath fan than I had ever considered... I’d love to have this on vinyl.

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Fri Jan 29 2021
5

Easy 5, one of my favourite albums of all time.

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Sun Apr 11 2021
5

It's the album Prince Philip will have blaring out as he's lowered into his grave. As if we're not getting a bank holiday. That is most upsetting.

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Fri Jan 29 2021
5

One of the best albums ever made.

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Sat Feb 27 2021
5

Some disgustingly good riffs in this album, had actually forgotten abt War Pigs, which was a nice surprise. Pretty much every song is a banger, also they pieced together Paranoid in 2 hours??? What the fuck Already Saved: Paranoid Saved After Listening: War Pigs, Iron Man, Electric Funeral

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Sun Apr 11 2021
5

yes please. this is a band i would love to watch, sadly the later versions of sabbath are pretty awful so that just isn't going to happen.

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Wed Feb 24 2021
5

Great album. A lot of nostalgia

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Sat May 01 2021
5

Nothin to say. Pure fire 😂. 5/5

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Mon Dec 21 2020
5

Fantastic classic. Always was very good, still is

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Wed Apr 28 2021
5

What an album, there isn't a bad song on it. I can tell why this is such a touchstone for the genre. It has a primal quality that it's heavier predecessors struggle to capture.

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Fri May 21 2021
5

Insane. The riffs on here are SICK NASTY..a HURRICANE of intensity. One of my all-time favorites. This one is so good it's RIDICULOUS

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Tue Apr 13 2021
5

Warum ist Hand of doom nicht beliebter? Klassiker der immer wieder spaß macht.

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Fri May 21 2021
5

Such a classic. It's cool to hear the subtle stereo panning of the drums and guitars with headphones.

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Wed Jun 30 2021
5

Wow what a dead-center-kick-to-the-nuts album from top to bottom!

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Fri Jul 16 2021
5

Classic album. Generated a new genre for future middle school boys to headbang too. 5-star banger.

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Thu Jul 29 2021
5

Hand of doom. The best part about this album is you can take all of the singles that everyone’s heard plenty of times away, and what you’re left with is still amazing. I love this album. Again….hand of doom.

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Wed Aug 25 2021
5

Wonderful stuff and so influential to the development of heavy metal - amazing tracks such as war pigs, iron man and of course paranoid I haven’t debated a score as much and my head says four but……

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Wed Aug 25 2021
5

Outstanding, nom stop bangers start to finish. Also, the best percussion I've heard in ages.

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Wed Sep 15 2021
5

Iconic, IronMan, Maybe top 5

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Fri Sep 24 2021
5

We do not deserve and can barely handle the badassery of Black Sabbath. This song is at least 50% hits, and the other 50% slaps. Keep it up and you'll go places, Oswald.

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Sat Oct 02 2021
5

Albums were so short! The tracks that everyone knows still wail but the others are surprisingly chill.

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Mon Oct 04 2021
5

Front to back this is what heavy metal should sound like. Sabbath were pioneers. From the fast to the heavy and even a slower song like Planet Caravan

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Fri Oct 08 2021
5

Gros classique. Fait Stoner. Considérer à acheter en vinyle

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Fri Oct 08 2021
5

Greatest Metal Album of all time. Genre defining. Driving guitar links heavy bass and harrowing vocals make for an amazing listening experience.

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Fri Oct 08 2021
5

Holy cow! This album is freaking fantastic! What have I been waiting for??? I think as a kid I bought just enough into the satanic panic of the 70s and 80s to believe at least a tiny bit that listening to Black Sabbath would invite Satan into my soul. (There were Christian protestors outside the brand new Events Center when Black Sabbath came to my home town in the early 80s.) And even after I became certain there was nothing to fear in this music, I had convinced myself that Black Sabbath just wouldn't appeal to me. They'd be too hard, too noisy, too mean. I even knew and liked half these songs already (War Pigs, Paranoid, Iron Man) but there was still a part of me that did not believe. Gah! Propaganda works, yo! Now I get why the powers that be needed me to be afraid. But the truth is we don't need to fear this bunch of hippies! The war pigs are the ones to fear! Anyway, my feelings about every single track on this record run the gamut from like-it-a-lot to oh-my-god-I-love-this-so-much! The drums, the guitars, bass, vocals are all amazing. When everything but the hi-hat drops out at the beginning of War Pigs? Sublime. The mellow bongo-ness of Planet Caravan? Smooth. The psychedelia Electric Funeral? Terrific. The bluesy grooves in the middle of Hand of Doom and Fairies Wear Boots? Bluesy and groovy --- and wicked! I love this record. More please!

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