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Performer Notes
  • Black Sabbath: Ozzy Osbourne (vocals); Tony Iommi (guitar); Geezer Butler (bass); Bill Ward (drums).
  • Additional personnel: Geoff Nichols (keyboards).
  • Engineers include: Thom Panunzio, Bob Marlette, Greg Hackett.
  • Recorded live at The N.E.C., Birmingham, England on December 5, 1997; A&M Studios, Los Angeles, California in April & May 1998. Includes liner notes by Phil Alexander.
  • "Iron Man" won the 2000 Grammy Award for Best Metal Performance.
  • Rivaled only by Kiss' reunion of founding members, Black Sabbath's reformation was a long awaited and eagerly anticipated occurrence that had fans gnashing their teeth anytime rumors of reconciliation were proven false (such as the aftermath of the band's 1985 Live Aid appearance). The 2-CD REUNION puts all the hearsay to rest in the shape of a December 1997 show recorded in the band's hometown of Birmingham, England. Sabbath was the force that launched hundreds of hard-rock ships, and it's refreshing to hear the original quartet pound away on classics such as "Sweet Leaf" and "Fairies Wear Boots."
  • Despite all the dark imagery Black Sabbath conjures up, Ozzy Osborne was quite the avuncular frontman, showering the crowd with "we love you all" declarations in between such ominous songs as "War Pigs" and "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath." Tony Iommi's guitar playing that night showed his range extending beyond the narrow confines of hard rock, as the acoustic beauty of "Orchid" was a dichotomous prelude to the crunch of "Lord Of This World." The mix of more obscure material ("Spiral Architect") with classic Sabbath songs ("Iron Man," "Paranoid") is complemented by a pair of promising new studio cuts, "Psycho Man" and "Selling My Soul."
Professional Reviews
Entertainment Weekly (11/27/98, p.85) - "...There's more thrust and bottom [to Sabbath's groundbreaking first works], and more space for Tony Iommi's evil leads. Even when Ozzy screeches wildly off-key, the album still sounds bloody brilliant." - Rating: B+

Q (10/02, p.122) - 3 stars out of 5 - "...Sabbath have never sounded slicker..."

CMJ (11/23/99, p.29) - "....It's epic, it's huge and it's life-altering....but the real point of the record is to promote the tour, which should not be missed. If you do, you will regreat it for the rest of your life, guaranteed..."
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