4.0 out of 5 stars Sabbath re-energized..
This album is a hard rock classic..Iommi's guitar tones on this album, along with great vocals, neat songwriting, and a real sense of purpose (we're back without Ozzy, so check it out) made this the dio-sabbath mothership. Mob Rules, although it had a few good tunes, cannot touch this. Is it only me that finds Iommi's vibrato a bit spooky?? He is the irreverant man in...
Published on Oct 2 2004 by B. W. Wilson
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad for post-Ozzy
I liken the switch of Ronnie James Dio for Ozzy Osbourne to the switch of Sammy Hagar for David Lee Roth. The first albums succeeding the original singers (Heaven and Hell, and 5150) were pretty good, but then the succeeding albums faded fast. You just can't replace a David Lee Roth or an Ozzy Osbourne. Ozzy's intensely psychological lyrics made the band, and although Dio...
Published on Jan 9 2003 by Richard C. Jensen
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5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly Black Sabbath's best album!,
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)In a world of wildabeasts and angels, Ronnie James Dio is in the most darkest, most evil thing created by man... Black Sabbath. He displays his most best work on Heaven and Hell, with songs that tell tales of children of the night, witches in the dark, and other things that go bump in the night can send chills down your back when listening. The music on this album is excellent, melodic and sweet and the lyrics very well written with some catchy songs such as Neon Knights, Lady Evil, and Heaven and Hell will leave you singing along with the beast of darkness. If you love classic heavy metal then get this record.
5.0 out of 5 stars Look out! its Dio!,
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)1980's Heaven and Hell stands as my favorite Black Sabbath album, PERIOD. It has more melody than previous albums (with maybe an exception of Sabotage and SBS (my two other favorites), and Dio and the band really shine. Too bad the band seems to want to forget about this period and not acknoWledge its greatness. This is the Black Sabbath album that KILLS NU METAL SHEEP who pick it up expecting Ozzy. Dio is a MUSICIAN, Ozzy is a VOCALIST who has had alot of stuff ghostwritten for him anyway (Bob Daisley anyone?). If you're into metal, you probably own this already!
5.0 out of 5 stars Black Sabbath's best album ever - no contest,
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)Heaven And Hell (1980.) Black Sabbath's ninth album.
Following the recording of Black Sabbath's 1978 effort, Never Say Die!, they were forced to expel legendary metal vocalist Ozzy Osbourne out of the band. Ozzy would start a solo career, but would would Geezer Butler, Bill Ward, and Tony Iommi do without a vocalist? The answer to that question was simple. Get a new one. Ronnie James Dio, who previously did lead vocals in the blues rock outfit Elf and former Deep Purple member Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow, became the new Black Sabbath vocalist. How would Black Sabbath measure up without Ozzy? Read on for my review of Heaven And Hell.
I had some serious doubts when I heard that Black Sabbath released material without Ozzy in the band, even though I knew that Ronnie James Dio was a great metal vocalist. Well, one things for sure - this album SHATTERED those doubts, and made me feel stupid for ever having had them! Heaven And Hell is Black Sabbath's BEST ALBUM. Period. Sorry to disappoint all you Ozzy loyalists, but it's the truth. Neon Knights, the opener, is fast-paced hard rock with a slight melodic touch - just the kind of sound that Dio demonstrated he could do beautifully in his Rainbow days. The slow-paced Children Of The Sea comes next - it's the album's ballad, if you'd like to call it such. The slow and melodic side of Sabbath never sounded finer. Lady Evil is another Rainbow-esque classic hard power rocker as only Dio could shell out. And with Sabbath backing him, the results can only be promising. By far, though, the strongest track on this album is the lengthy title track. Tony Iommi is a guitar god, and he's demonstrated it tons of times both before and after the release of this album, but NO TRACK SHOWS THAT HE IS A GUITAR GOD THE WAY THIS SONG DOES. The opening solo to this track is the best damn guitar playing he has EVER done. Combine that with some priceless vocals from Dio, and you know very well you've got a masterpiece on your hands. It is immediately followed up with another excellent rocker, Wishing Well. Once again, you get some killer vocals from Dio here. From start to finish, Heaven And Hell flat out rocks.
THE TEXT IN THIS PARAGRAPH REFERS EXCLUSIVELY TO THE WARNER BROS. AMERICAN REISSUE OF THE ALBUM. Warner Bros. did a fine job remastering and rereleasing the Black Sabbath catalogue, as did they several other artists. Unfortunately, they didn't really do anything outside of improving the sound quality. You don't get expanded liner notes, interviews, bonus tracks, or anything. It's kind of a disappointment, but it doesn't change my views on the album itself.
Heaven And Hell is, for lack of a better way of putting it, a masterpiece among masterpieces. When you take the heavy metal vocal mastery of Ronnie James Dio and pair him up with Tony Iommi's guitar expertise, the results can only be good. If you're a fan of Black Sabbath, or a fan of ANY band Ronnie James Dio has ever played in, this is a must own.
5.0 out of 5 stars Black Sabbath Is Reborn,
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)I have to first say that I hesitated for many years to purchase this cd. I had the attitude that if Ozzy was singing in Sabbath than it wasn't worth purchasing. How wrong I was!!! First, take into consideration the last two Ozzy albums with Black Sabbath, they were well below the standard this band had created with their first 6 offerings. Heaven and Hell is a far heavier and riff laden album than those two albums. Tony Iommi almost seems to be reborn on this album. Some of his best riffs are on this album (Heaven and Hell, Die Young, Children of the Sea). The album is solid throughout with (maybe the exception of Walk Away). Ronnie James Dio has his best singing proformance of his career. Don't make the same mistake I made; go out and purchase this album. I highly reccommend it to anyone who likes metal. It is a classic.
5.0 out of 5 stars Black Sabbath Roars Back in 1980 With Ronnie James Dio!!!!,
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)After charismatic, but drug-addicted, John "Ozzy" Osbourne left the band for good in late 1978, Black Sabbath still had many fans, but they were basically considered to be washed-up. After all, Heavy Metal was an early '70's thing, and disco now ruled the airwaves in the latter part of the decade. This was the position in which the remaining members (guitarist Tony Iommi, bass guitarist Tony "Geezer" Butler and drummer Bill Ward) found themselves when searching for a new lead singer. They found Ronnie James Dio, an American who had been the lead singer for New York-based blues-rock band Elf from 1972-75, and then for British-based progressive Heavy Metal band Rainbow from 1975-78. Many people wondered skeptically if Black Sabbath could recreate their old magic with Dio as their lead singer.
Well, they didn't; instead, they made some new magic. Hooking up with Rainbow's producer, the great Martin Birch, they were clearly re-energized when they recorded HEAVEN AND HELL in early 1980, both musically and lyrically. Ronnie James Dio, who had written Rainbow's famous mystical lyrics to such classics as "Man On The Silver Mountain" and "Stargazer," found a new home in Black Sabbath, as he was easily able to incorporate his mystical lyrics into Sabbath's style. Opening with the fast, blazing "Neon Knights," HEAVEN AND HELL shows Black Sabbath ready for the 80's. Tony Iommi's guitar riffing is faster, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward's rhythmic interplay is tighter, and Dio's singing is incredibly inspired. This was a Black Sabbath that was louder, faster, clearer and more progressive-oriented. This progressive orientation is even more evident on the album's second track, "Children Of The Sea." Beginning with soft guitar and singing, Black Sabbath quickly whip the music up into a fierce mid-tempo riff over which Dio sings:
"We sailed across the air before we learned to fly;
"Children Of The Sea" incorporates some gothic-sounding background vocals which combines the third dimension of finesse with Tony Iommi's technically proficient lead guitar playing. It's an incredible song. "Lady Evil" begins with a strong mid-tempo bass/drum groove with enticing lyrics that talk about "a magical mystical woman" who lives "In a place just south of Witches' Valley" and features another inspired lead guitar solo from Tony Iommi. Then, another instant Black Sabbath classic is born with the title track, which features one of the best and most recognizable opening guitar riffs, some of the best bass playing and drumming, and one of the most incredibly fierce vocal performances singing some of the most poetic lyrics:
"Sing me a song, you're a singer.
Black Sabbath just redefined their music for a whole new generation of Metal fans with this album! The nearly seven-minute "Heaven And Hell" ends with a full minute of beautiful Spanish-guitar playing by Tony Iommi, which he had not done since "Symptom Of The Universe" from the 1975 album SABOTAGE. "Wishing Well" is a fast hard-rocker that reminds us that "Time is a never ending journey/Love is a never ending smile." Black Sabbath then go for the jugular again with the multi-part "Die Young," which deceptively begins with a spacey keyboard intro which is joined by high-pitched guitar, then transformed into a fast, muscular feast of Metal, in which Dio sings with an emotional ferocity:
"Gather the wind, though the wind won't help you fly at all
Then, everything gets quiet and Dio sings softly:
"Die young, die young;
Then the heavy guitar comes roaring back again. All of this goes on comfortably inside of five minutes! "Walk Away" is a mid-tempo tune that can be described as a mystical anti-love song. The song is not among the album's most memorable (even so, it still beats most of the material on NEVER SAY DIE!), but it's still very solid and rhythmic. Then the feeling of loneliness is explored in the album's final song, the slow-paced but powerful "Lonely is The Word."
At 39:50, HEAVEN AND HELL is a full six minutes shorter than the band's final outing with Ozzy, which was overlong and under-produced, and as a result is snappier and packs a much greater punch. There are no weak songs here. This album totally revitalized Black Sabbath and opened them up to a new generation of fans. HEAVEN AND HELL sold over a million copies in the U.S. alone (which Sabbath had not done in at least five years) and made the Billboard Top 20 for several weeks in 1980. Black Sabbath embarked on a highly successful arena-sized concert tour that year, and immediately spurred on the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal (joined by re-energized veterans such as Judas Priest, and by newcomers as diverse as Iron Maiden, Def Leppard, Saxon and Motorhead). To this day, this remains one of Black Sabbath's greatest albums ever (see its position on my Listmania list), and is a must-buy for any fan of their music.
5.0 out of 5 stars Sabbath returns nicely...,
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)Bill Ward claims he doesn't remember drumming on this album due to blackouts caused by alcohol/drugs. I'd hate to see what he could do if he was straight. From the opening chords of Neon Knights through the ending song of Lonely Is The Word Mr. Ward's timekeeping on this masterpiece is incredible. Sabbath sounds refreshed with the addition of Ronnie James Dio to the fold and crank out a metal masterpiece. Iommi's riffs are strong, Geezer plays like its his first album(incredibly as always) and vocally Dio sounds incredible. Tight and fresh metal. A revitalized Sabbath...Unfortunately with any Post Ozzy Sabbath line-up only two studio lps(up to Dehumanizer) and Live Evil.
3.0 out of 5 stars My first Black Sabbath Experience,
By A Customer
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)This was my first Black Sabbath release, many moons ago, on (ack!) eight-track tape, so I decided to purchase it again on CD.
It's just as good as I remember, way back when, but the quality of the sound is also just as good as I remember. (On tape)
I'm sorry I didn't spend the extra couple of bucks and get the re-mastered version.
5.0 out of 5 stars Ozzy who? Dio is the only real metal vocalists,
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)Hey nu-metal kids, Sabbath was kicking ass way before Limp Bizkit was a wet dream in the record company's mind. Dio vocals kill, as of now, I cannot find anyone (rock/pop/other) who has the range, power, and intesity of Ronnie James Dio. Not say the other Sabbath members should be forgotten.
Iommi, has to be one of the most underrated guitar players of all time. He consistanly rocks, even if the rest of the band isn't up to par. (***Please note this is not in reference to this album***) I can say that Iommi's riffs could easily hold up with modern nu-metal with Iommi crushing the compotision.
As I said in the "The Mob Rules" review, Gezzer can be heard on this album and it is killer. Bill Ward is another serverly underrated palyer in Sabbath. He can go at it with anyone for that era (But he does fall to John Bonham).
"Neon Knights" gets this album rocking, and it doesn't stop. See other rockers "Wishing Well", "Heaven & Hell", and "Die Young". Sabbath put out two awesome records with Dio and two of my favorites. Also the artwork for both "Heaven & Hell" and "The Mob Rules" are on my list for coolest of all time.
5.0 out of 5 stars Out of this F@#%^$@#! universe !!!!,
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)Is there a need to rate this album ? Earlier Sabbath broke ground for Heavy Metal and all bands to follow. In this album they broke ground for all heavy metalers and set a new standard
for Metal all together. The chemistry was right and they do it to it and don't let you rest. With some of my personal favorite musicians, how can this be, second to excellent .Iommi rules ,Dio
tears it up on vocals and Geezer bashes the strings. Not to mention some of Ward's best drummimg ever. Melody is also a graet par twith Dio at the helm , he re-invents metal and all who came after are still trying to get it like this one album
does. What else can be said, let the music convince...# 10 in my book all time metal masterpiece
5.0 out of 5 stars This IS The New Sabbath!!! (Of 1980 of Course),
This review is from: Heaven and Hell (Audio CD)Wow. This album, I mean CD, brings me back to 1980. I was a huge Sabbath fan at the time. I loved everyhting they did. I remember seeing this in the New Release section of the record store and was psyched. Then I flipped the album over to look at the names of the songs and was shocked to see no Ozzy! How could there be a Sabbath without Ozzy? Oh well, I thought. They were a good band while they lasted. Then a friend of mine bought the album and called me up to tell me how good it was. He was a casual Sabbath listener and I thought it was only for those who "kind of" liked Sabbath. Boy, was I wrong! He brought it up and I was totally blown away. Yeah, Ozzy's voice was missing, but here was a new, vibrant, heavy, youthful sounding Sabbath. I couldn't believe my ears. Fast, full throttle rockers, slow churning, heavy rockers, melodic interludes, and the signature Sabbath crunch of Tony Iommi's guitar. (By the way, I believe some of his best work is on here) It took a while to get used to Ronnie James Dio's vocals in the mix, but it was worth the wait. As for the lyrics, Ronnie brought in a bit of mythological mysticism with enough dark undertones to make for some exciting new songs.
I will always love this album. It heralded in a new, albeit short-lived chapter of Black Sabbath history. It was sad that the line-up didn't remain because I believe they would have been the biggest act of the decade, even eclipse Ozzy's success (which was sadly due only to his drug and drink influenced behavior and not his new musical direction. Sorry Ozz, but it's true) Anyway, this IS Sabbath, like it or not. It rang in a new decade of heavy metal music and was THE album that broke the floodgates open for the NWOBHM that was to follow. Buy it, enjoy it. It's great heavy metal and it's great Sabbath.
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Heaven and Hell by Black Sabbath (Audio CD - 1987)