Friday, February 28, 2014

Black Sabbath - Master of Reality (1971)

Seeing the cover to Black Sabbath's third album, "Master of Reality", you would think that the band was high when creating the album. Then you would be partially correct. The first song on the album, "Sweet Leaf", was recorded while the band was stoned and the song itself is an ode to marijuana. Also, the coughing you hear on the intro is in fact Tony Iommi, who started to cough a hell of a lot when Ozzy offered him a joint. Well, high or not high, "Sweet Leaf" is still a pretty sweet song to listen to.

I do not know however if the rest of the album was created under the influence of marijuana, but at least it follows the same lines as in its predecessor "Paranoid". "Master of Reality" stands steadily on a foundation of groovy beats, sudden tempo shiftings and dark riffs. And even if the play time of the album is once again pretty short, the band is making the most out of it with a good variety of songs.

The most notable song is of course "Children of The Grave", not because it is one of Black Sabbath's most famous songs, but because of the darkness in it. The doom like riffs, the dark lyrics, the heavy groove and the down tuned bass makes this song special in oh so many ways. But "Children of The Grave" is far from the only reason to why "Master of Reality" is one of Black Sabbath's most acclaimed albums. We also have "After Forever" that blends doom metal vibes with melody loops that could have been very fitting in a Sonic The Hedgehog game. Then we have the smooth and soothing "Solitude" that just cleanses your soul with its flutes and smooth Ozzy vocals (who would have thought that he could sing so smooth). I also have to mention the last song "Into The Void" that is just a typical Black Sabbath track. A simple, but effective, riff, Ozzy singing with the beat and some cool tempo shiftings.

I do think that "Master of Reality" is slightly overrated, but it is still a pretty cool Black Sabbath album. This album helps defining the band's style and does so with a couple of effective and groovy tunes. This album got a very high low point, but not so high high point, which could be seen as strange since the band was stoned during the time of making this album.

Songs worthy of recognition: Children of The Grave, Sweet Leaf, Into The Void

Rating: 8/10 Embryos

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