Album Review: 13 by Black Sabbath

Posted by Bianca on Sunday Jun 9, 2013 Under Album Review, Metal

Ahead of Black Sabbath’s incredible new album ’13’ being released tomorrow, Gig Junkies’ Sabbath fan Sharon Hall, reviews and shares her thoughts with us.

Black Sabbath

“What is this that stands before me, an album in black taunting me? Shall I succumb or shall I run away for fear of disappointment?” These were my initial thoughts after hearing the news Black Sabbath are releasing a new album after 30 years. Truth be told I wasn’t really looking forward to listening to 13. I had the magic die on me once, when Ozzy left in 1979, I was only 7 at the time but I knew impending doom was upon us and I didn’t want the magic to die again. I remember well the release of Heaven and Hell and Born Again after Ozzy’s departure and although Dio and Gillan are geezers in their own right they just didn’t cut it for me.

Then I was asked to review the album by a good friend who knows full well of my love for Black Sabbath but this meant not only would I have to listen to the album, I would have to analyse and air my disappointment to the rest of the World. So with trepidation I pressed the play button praying to the Prince of Darkness “please, please be awesome”. The Prince of Darkness listened Sabbath are back!

I could just leave it at that. Sabbath are back and that’s all we need to know but with the tradition of an album review I will pass on a few of my thoughts.

13 is full of grungy guitar riffs harking back to the atmospheric and dark metal that Black Sabbath pioneered. A sound and feel that many bands have and still try to emulate in their own way.

The album starts with End of the Beginning a track of rolling guitar riffs and bassy atmosphere reminiscent of Black Sabbath the first track from their first album released on Friday 13th, 1970. End of the Beginning is possibly my favourite track on the album although there isn’t really a song from 13 I wouldn’t listen to on repeat.

With God is Dead, released as a single and the second track on the album, we feel the impending doom of the human race coming closer. This feeling of doom continues throughout the album pulled along by Ozzy’s haunting vocals and chilling lyrics. Not really a cheery album and not recommended for those on the edge of sanity.

The Age of Reason demonstrates Sabbath’s versatility and fits with the format from their original albums of adding an acoustic or softer track. Not a love song just a bit calm amongst the torment and fear. Age of Reason for me smacks of Planet Caravan a little psychedelic and lot of intricacy.

Sabbath have paid homage throughout the whole album to their previous masterpieces. Damaged Soul and Dear Father hark back to Iron Man and War Pigs respectively. I don’t mind this, I like it. While the album is typically Black Sabbath, they have even strategically placed a thunderstorm and church bells, it is also current and relevant to today’s Hard Rock Genre. Black Sabbath have produced an album for their fans but also an album that will surely spawn a new Sabbath generation.

I have one thing to say “Sabbath Brilliant Sabbath”.

Black Sabbath Tour Dates:

10.12.13 – London – O2
14.12.13 – Sheffield – Motorpoint Arena
16.12.13 – Glasgow – Hydro
18.12.13 – Manchester – Arena
20.12.13 – Birmingham – LG Arena

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