Sabotage is the sixth studio album by English rock band Black Sabbath, released in July 1975. It was recorded in the midst of litigation with their former manager Patrick Meehan and the stress that resulted from the band’s ongoing legal woes infiltrated the recording process, inspiring the album’s title. It was co-produced by guitarist Tony Iommi and Mike Butcher.
Hole In The Sky—-Coming back after a year off of recording, and the band sounds as strong and driven as ever. The sound…you notice right off..is less sludge and delivered in a much more clear rock fashion. The riffs in the track are huge…the melody seems to wrap itself right around Ozzy’s voice. This is clearer and meant to inspire. This is burgeoning Heavy Metal. Just fantastic.
Don’t Start [Too Late]—-Intricate and almost classical guitar strums begin the track. The Spanish inspired chords are fantastic and nimble. This brief interlude leads right into…..
Symptom Of The Universe—-Falling back on a deeper rhythm section like previous releases, there is still a remarkable clarity to the song. The chug chug sound of the bass line and the drums in the front of the song is one of urgency and importance. Ozzy delivers a vocal that is almost maniacal and pissed. I love the clear and concise delivery of the lyrics…this is a nice progression of the band…moving up it;s sound and really putting a framework to the Birmingham sound. I love this. I like how the song….at almost 7 minutes long, reverts back to the sound of the Don’t Start interlude before kicking things back again…..this is epic.
Megalomania—-Dark and eerie right at the onset, this has a vibe to it that takes me right back to the earliest releases from the band. Ozzy seems pushed to the back of the song…the entire thing has a dark sound. But the chorus has a melody that sticks right in the center of your forehead and makes you yearn to dismiss it…but the magical melody becomes part of your permanent memory. This is an odd track…but one of the best on the release. I love this stuff!
The Thrill Of It All—-Still delivering a classic sound, the band does seem lighter at times on this release…moving away from the sludge sound of the past and delivering a clearer and crisp sound. This track….the heaviest on the release thus far is really what metal was at the time. Big riffs…interludes of guitars and vocals and then a return to the guitar base of the sound. This is magnificent. Ozzy sounds clear and crisp…but there is an underlying anger to the voice. I love the progression of the band…how the sound has changed but remained true to the original sound. This is fantastic. Ozzy really hits some great notes!!!
Supertzar—-There is that nice Sabbath sludge to kick things off! This track has a dark and ominous feel to it….taking you to Church of the Dark Kind right from the onset. The choir of voices adds to the eerie feel of the song….interspersed with melodic guitar lines. At times…the confusion of the song is rather obvious…the schizophrenic sound takes some getting used to. Not a favorite track….but put on the release for a reason I assume.
Am I Going Insane—-What a great melody to start off this track with. Ozzy delivers a vocal and lyric that is not foreign to me. I love this track…the galloping feel of the track is remarkable. Still dark and layered with heaviness…the double track of the vocal adds a brightness to the sound. This is a favorite from this release for me. I love the feel of the song.
The Writ—-Maniacal laughs and the sound of madness kick off the track…a deep and ominous bass line ushers i a vocal delivery from Osbourne that is crazy in sound and driven to the brink of insanity. This song has an urgent sound….propelling you into a feeling of impending dread and somewhat sadness. The sound of the band is great…but this was really the beginning of the end of the classic Sabbath line-up. I love the track…it leaves you with an odd feeling though…really questioning the future. Ozzy sounds so damn good though!!!! This entire track was a message….to those who were leading the band into legal difficulties….subtle….but not. The Rat chant is clear.There are so many movements to the song…..a melody that won’t leave you alone…an almost pleading vocal at times…Ozzy seems to beg….but returns to anger and a reminder that things MIGHT work out fine. This is BRILLIANT!!!!!
***** out of 5