Black Sabbath – Black Sabbath Vol. 4

ARTIST: Black Sabbath 220px-black_sabbath_vol-_4

TITLE:  Black Sabbath, Vol. 4

YEAR RELEASED: 1972

CHART ACTION: #13 US, #8 UK

SINGLES: Tomorrow’s Dream

OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW:  Supernaut, Snowblind

LINEUP:  Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler, Bill Ward

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Sludgy as normal, but Sabbath tries to extend themselves and it doesn’t quite work all of the time. Plus, cocaine. 

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: They originally wanted to call this album Snowblind, but the record company demurred. That would have been appropriate.

There was some traditional Sabbath sludge, a groundbreaking cut in “Supernaut”, the requisite Tony Iommi instrumental (this time with strings and mellotron) and then a couple of cuts that really could have been left on the floor, including (sorry folks) “Changes” which is a weepy, maudlin ballad that could have been recorded by Climax or Leo Sayer.

They tried to extend themselves a bit with tracks like “Snowblind” and “Cornucopia”, which were halfway successful. The excesses showed when they thought “Fx” was cool to put on the album. That’s a minute and a half you won’t get back.

Trim out a couple of cuts and it’s a fine record with great riffs. But I must take those two tracks into consideration.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: They recorded this in LA, basically self-produced, and basically went through a ton of cocaine and other drugs.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No.

GRADE: B: Some great cuts but the weakest one yet.

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