This was a landmark album for Black Sabbath at the time of its release. After a string of successful releases from their debut album, Black Sabbath opted for a work that was, in the minds of some, more commercial. However, in the minds of others, it was a more *artistic* statement concerning the band's direction. To be sure, the production on this album is amazing, and the contributions of Rick Wakeman on keyboards add a lot to Black Sabbath's music in terms of its musical textures. Regardless of all the super-group trappings that Black Sabbath was becoming known for, this album maintained that they would be the most darkest, most cynical, most threatening musical force around. An outstanding work.