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Tony Iommi Recalls the Best and Worst of Black Sabbath, the Heaviest Band South of Heaven

Tony Iommi Recalls the Best and Worst of Black Sabbath, the Heaviest Band South of Heaven

Vol. 4 (1972)

“We wrote and recorded Vol. 4 at the Record Plant in Los Angeles. LA was a real distraction for us, and that album ended up sounding a bit strange. The people who were involved with the record really didn’t have a clue. They were all learning with us, and we didn’t know what we were doing either. The experimental stage we began with Master of Reality continued with Vol. 4, and we were trying to widen our sound and break out of the bag everyone had put us into.”

Sabbath Bloody Sabbath (1975)

Sabbath Bloody Sabbath was a real turning point for us. We started getting more involved in what we thought we should sound like, not what other people thought we should sound like. We had a good time in LA and we moved back there for Sabbath Bloody Sabbath, hoping to recreate the sound of Vol. 4. Musically, we liked that drug-oriented sound. [laughs] So we went back to L.A. and rented the same house, the same studio, the same drugs, everything. But we weren’t able to create anything there, so we returned to England. “We started thinking the band didn’t ‘have it’ any more, and we knew we had to do something to get ‘it’ back. So we rented an old castle in Wales and rehearsed in its spooky old dungeon. After we wrote ‘Sabbath Bloody Sabbath,’ things just started coming fast and furious again.”

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