Monday, May 23, 2011

Best of the 80's: Hevean and Hell by Black Sabbath

Heaven And HellIf you were going to label one band as setting the full template for heavy metal it would have to be Black Sabbath.  They hit the scene in 1970 and immediately set the standard for all heavy metal bands that would follow. 

By 1980 Sabbath had become a has been.  Their last few albums had been tired and they seemed done.  Then they replaced Ozzy with Ronnie James Dio and came out with Heaven and Hell, their sort of swansong.  The change in singer seemed to be enough of an energy boost to get out one more great album and sits currently at number 76 on the Best of the 80's list.

If you're in the mood for some solid heavy metal then this album won't disappoint.  The great thing about Sabbath is that they don't have to go over the top to produce their sound.  You take a song like "Heaven and Hell" and you get a great feel for what makes Sabbath the King of heavy metal.

Following the Rhapsody rating method I give it 2 out of 5 stars for Not Bad.

1 comment:

  1. He was a good singer.

    as part of our service as co-editors of the heath high school pirata yearbook, Matthew and i spent part of a day in early 1986 mimeographing a bunch of questionnaires and then distributing them to each of the senior-class homeroom teachers. the following morning in the short homeroom period, all of us seniors filled out answers to survey questions such as, "what is your favorite song?" "what is your favorite hangout?" and "who is your favorite concert?" Matthew and i then went back around to each of these teachers, collected the completed surveys and, with great care, tabulated the results which were then recorded in the yearbook. until this Christmas, i actually still had all of the original response sheets. i packaged up some of them and mailed them to David Feather (our senior-class president) along with his and Ginger's Christmas card; the rest, i finally recycled.

    i remember only one concert of interest to our class coming to the paducah area during our senior year ... Ronnie James Dio opened for Sammy Hagar at either murray state or southern illinois university. about a dozen or so of the kids went to the show (i couldn't even imagine being audacious enough to ask my parents for permission to do something so frivolous, expensive and edgy) and, to a person it seemed, showed back up at school the following monday with Sammy Hagar/Ronnie James Dio concert t-shirts. i don't remember ever hearing about anyone ever going to any other concert that year, other than maybe summer-festival stuff down at the paducah riverfront or some kind of Christian-rock thing in a church parking lot.

    in any event, two names dominated the yearbook-survey responses to "who is your favorite concert?" Sammy Hagar finished first; Ronnie James Dio, second. third-through-fifth place went to Klymaxx (whose "i miss you" won favorite song), Bruce Springsteen and Prince. i'm pretty certain that none of the heath high school class of '86 saw Klymaxx, Bruce Springsteen or Prince in concert that year.