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Black Sabbath - Live: Gathered in Their Masses

by Kevin Wierzbicki

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This film was shot in Melbourne, Australia earlier this year as Sabbath began a tour to support their not-yet-released 13 album. Four songs from the bestseller are played: "End of the Beginning," "Loner," "Methademic" and "God is Dead?" and the crowd roars for each of the previously unheard songs like they are longtime favorites, a tribute not only to the strength of the new material but also to how much love there is out there for the band and the fact that this tour featured original members Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler.

The bulk of the set list draws from early albums and the show begins with "War Pigs" from the Paranoid album, only fitting since the film is titled after the first line of that song. Osbourne encourages the crowd to chant along to the song and basically they sing the first verse by themselves.

Sweating profusely just a few songs in and ambling about the stage in his typical hunchback mode, Osbourne leads the band through chestnuts like the blues rocking "Behind the Wall of Sleep," "Snowblind," "Fairies Wear Boots" and first album title track "Black Sabbath," perhaps the eeriest-sounding Sabbath song ever. Iommi is hot throughout and a few of the close-ups of his fret work show the prosthetic he wears on the tip of his finger; elsewhere Geezer plays a showy solo to open "N.I.B." and all shine on instrumental "Symptom of the Universe" where guest drummer Tommy Clufetos takes a solo.

After the band showcase Osbourne lurches back to center stage to the opening strains of "Iron Man;" a few songs later the show wraps up with a snippet of "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" and a fervent rendition of "Paranoid." The film makes for a nice bow on the gift of Sabbath that fans have been enjoying all year long.

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Black Sabbath - Live: Gathered in Their Masses
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