Sound — 10
The rain is pouring on the ground, lightning strikes in the distance, your body is enveloped in a dark void, a shadow approaches you. That figure gives you a new record, and you pop it into your player. Then you hear that Satanic tritone, a new sound, a new feeling. That's right folks, that is the birth of heavy metal. Three dakr, powerful notes, followed by more notes in a faster pace, then ended with a crazy solo where that long-haired vocalist absolutely becomes a psychomaniac. This album, after scaring your pants off, then tries to lull you into an eternal sleep with a soft mellow mellody. Then a former rythym guitarist pulls out an insane bass solo using a wahwah pedal. Then "Lucifer" tries to induce you into loving him with an absolutely memeroable riff and smooth guitar solos. Then a "Wizard" walks by with a harmonica in his mouth and plays you another very memorable riff. Then this album again tries to put you to sleep by describing a serene sunrise, only to have the guitarist pull out some riffs in vengenace of his sheet factory incident. This album also has two godd covers. One of them "The Warning", Mr. Tony Iommi shows off some of his two-fingered guitar skill, and makes the whole song sound completely different from the original for the most part. Then there was a song about "Evil Women", another good cover. Then later on, another song is added to the album, that ses obvious jazz influesnces and some killer guitar playing. The one thing this album does better than any other Black Sabbath album (except for maybe Paranoid) is that it consistently keeps that jazzy bluesy dark atmosphere in the whole song, and has some real heavy metal riffs added into the mix. Every song is different, yet every song somehow has a very similar feel to it. This album is consistent, and it creates a whole new genre. What more can you ask for?
Lyrics — 10
"Satan's sitting there, he's smiling." "Satan's coming round the bend." "My name is Lucifer, please take my hand." Not only did the sound of the album throw off a lot of people, but the lyrics did as well. Black Sabbath talks about Satan coming and an apocalypse beginning. NIB talks about the devil trying to make you fall in love with him. Behind the Wall of Sleep is inspired from good ol' Lovecraft. The lyrics were consistent, and they had a real serious feel to them, which was completely appropriate. As for that crazy guy singing them, well, he aint the best vocalist ever, but his voice fits in perfectly. Ozzy's voice had this kind of eerie feeling to it, which completes this dark formula this band was trying to create.
Overall Impression — 10
If I were in a band, and our first official album was anything like this, I would be extremely proud of myself (and my band). This album creates a real dark impression, and it also creates a new genre. It is a very consistent album by almost all aspects, and it by no means is repetitive. Many other albums are either to repetitive, or just are way too varied. This album is a perfect mix. This album also did allow Iommi and Butler to show off their great skills. This album has no complicated songs by any means. However, if you want complex, go listen to Rush or something. As for Black Sabbath, they kept it simple. The jazz influences were obvious, and a lot of the riffs are extremely simple. This album has some really memorable songs. However, this album doesn't produce some of Black Sabbath's best singles. Though as an album overall, it is easily one of their best. Each song together in a collaberative effort really make this album shine. Well, I'm not sure if "shine" would be such an appropriate word. Anyways, this album is completely wirth whatever the amount it costs. It is easily one of the top albums of not only by Black Sabbath, but of all time. If somebody were to steal this album from me, I would hunt that person down and burn him/her at a stake!