6004-2 Master of Reality
Produced by Rodger Bain
Released on July 1, 1971
UK CHART POSITION #5 . . . US CHART POSITION #8 . . .
GOLD RECORD (9/27/71), PLATINUM (10/13/86), 2x PLATINUM (7/26/01)
Find it at GEMM
6004-2 cover
[high resolution scan]
 

A lright now, this is the stuff: elephantine guitar riffs, bass lines that throb like a headache, all goaded on by Bill Ward’s eager rhythms and Ozzy’s flat, acrid observations. Alongside their last album, this is classic Sabbath from beginning to end: “Sweet Leaf,” “After Forever,” “Children of the Grave,” “Into The Void”… well, you get the picture. Paranoid did a better job of balancing light and dark, of course; here it’s all pretty dark. But for all the fuss made over Sabbath’s satanic interests, Ozzy’s lyrics are looking for the light (references to God and love are there if you listen). That said, Master of Reality is still a spooky album, best experienced on “Children of the Grave” and “Lord of This World.” Tony Iommi began to introduce acoustic interludes into the mix as well, such as the too-short “Embryo” and the lovely “Orchid.” Otherwise, this sticks to the formula established on Paranoid, even reprising the serene island of “Planet Caravan” on “Solitude.” Critics still didn’t get it, but headbangers had to be in heaven. Only a handful of bands (Led Zeppelin and Cream among them) could create music that scalded the senses, but even they never concocted a work of such blistering destruction as Master of Reality. If the four horsemen of the apocalypse ever made a record, it would sound like this. As usual, listeners are warned away from inferior pressings of the elpee (NEMS) and compact disc (Creative Sounds, Ltd.).

TRACK LISTING

  1. SWEET LEAF    (Tony Iommi/Geezer Butler/Bill Ward/Ozzy Osbourne)    5:02
  2. AFTER FOREVER    (Tony Iommi)    5:25
  3. EMBRYO    (Tony Iommi)    0:20
  4. CHILDREN OF THE GRAVE    (Tony Iommi/Geezer Butler/Bill Ward/Ozzy Osbourne)    5:23
  5. ORCHID    (Tony Iommi)    1:30
  6. LORD OF THIS WORLD    (Tony Iommi/Geezer Butler/Bill Ward/Ozzy Osbourne)    5:24
  7. INTO THE VOID    (Tony Iommi/Geezer Butler/Bill Ward/Ozzy Osbourne)    6:12
  8. SOLITUDE    (Tony Iommi/Geezer Butler/Bill Ward/Ozzy Osbourne)    5:02

    CD reissue bonus track
  9. KILLING YOURSELF TO LIVE (LIVE)

CREDITS

GEEZER BUTLER -- bass
TONY IOMMI -- lead guitar
OZZY OSBOURNE -- vocals
BILL WARD -- drums
Colin Caldwell -- engineer
Vic Smith -- engineer

return to BLACK SABBATH discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK/AUS'L/GER July 1, 1971 Vertigo LP/CS 6360 050 poster
US July 1, 1971 Warner Bros. LP/CS BS 2562  
FRA   Vertigo LP 6321 003  
UK December 1973 WWA LP WWA 008 reissue
US 1974 Warner Bros. LP WS4-1887  
UK/NET February 1976 NEMS LP NEL 6004 reissue
UK November 1985 NEMS LP NEL6004  
  December 1986 NEMS CD NELCD 6004  
US 1987 Warner Bros. CD 2562  
CAN   Warner Bros. CD CD2562  
YUG 1987 Jugodisk LP LPS1115  
UK July 1992 Castle CD CLACD 198  
UK/GER February 1996 Essential CD ESMCD 303 digital remaster
UK September 18, 2000 Castle CDLE CMTCD005 limited edition, poster
US 2001? Creative Sounds Ltd. CD 6004  
UK   Sanctuary CD SMRCD 033  
JPN   Victor CD VICP-61279 digital remaster
JPN 2002 Victor CDLE VICP-61712 ltd. ed. digital remaster
UK   Sanctuary LP CMHLP178 180g vinyl, poster
ITA December 2003 Earmark LP/LPPIC/LPCOL 41001/P/C 180g vinyl, poster, avail. in
pic disc & colored vinyl

 

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