Back in the day, Black Sabbath were noted for their hard partying excesses, and indeed, it was those overindulgences that led the original line-up to splinter. So to be back in the studio after 30 years apart, and to be completely sober, has been a different experience to the band.
As Classic Rock notes, bassist Geezer Butler had the following to say, when talking to KCAL FM:
"None of us have been drinking or doing drugs or anything. Its a bit more professional in that way. We stuck to a schedule: every day wed go in at one oclock and finished at six. Five hours a day and thats it."
"Its got the feel of the first three albums, back to the basic rawness. The lyrics are about life, death, doom and everything else. You get Prozac with each album..."
Geezer has also revealed that the title, "13", was a temporary name for the album, and may not stick for the final release:
"It was sort of a temporary name, so we had something to refer to. It kinda stuck but I dont know whether thats going to be the final title or not."
The album was also not going to be called "13" because of the year, according to Geezer, but because of the number of songs on the album: "Originally we were going to put 13 tracks on the album," Butler says. "We ended up doing 16, but Im not sure whats going to be on the album or what isnt."
He also notes that it was Rick Rubin's suggestion to have Rage Against The Machine drummer Brad Wilk play on the record: "He didnt want a typical heavy metal drummer on the album because it's not really a heavy metal album. It's more heavy rock.
"Rick suggested Brad because hes more in the vein of Bill Ward. We jammed with him and he sounded great with the stuff, so we went with that. Were sort of back to the way we used to be in the 70s and thats Brads feel a sort of jazzy, bluesy feel."