From the Vault...


Black Sabbath
"Volume 4"

© Warner Bros. Records
Year of Release: 1972

track listing
  • Wheels Of Confusion/
    The Straightener
  • Tomorrow's Dream
  • Changes
  • FX
  • Supernaut
  • Snowblind
  • Cornucopia
  • Laguna Sunrise
  • St. Vitus' Dance
  • Under The Sun/
    Every Day Comes
    And Goes

  • WSVNRadio Archives
    A B C D E F G H I J K L M
    N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

    Black Sabbath related sites:
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    Black Sabbath
    "Volume 4"

    Back in high school, Black Sabbath was one of the many bands us "young kids" were into. The most popular albums during this time for me, were their first 3 albums, Black Sabbath, Paranoid and Master Of Reality. Many songs from these 3 releases were always childhood remembrances, but the later releases with Ozzy Osbourne as lead singer were never discussed with us kids, and years (and decades) later, it's always a treat to look into the later releases of a well-known popular group: Black Sabbath's 4th album, Volume 4, released in 1972.

    Black Sabbath's first 3 releases were truly unique in sound. There's no mistaking the voice of Ozzy, yet Volume 4 has the sound of any common extremely hard-rock 1970s bands; one band in particular, Deep Purple. "Wheels Of Confusion/The Straightener" and "Tomorrow's Dream" definitely fits this mold, as interesting as these songs are, they have the common hard-rock 1970s sound. But when the vocals are heard, it's obvious that the name of the band is easily recognized as Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath.

    Surprisingly, "Changes" falls in the category of "I Didn't Know That's By..." The only give away is Ozzy's recognizable voice. This piano driven song is quite relaxing in sound, almost having a comparison in sound as another British artist who was getting his start in 1972, Elton John. "FX" is just that; an abbreviation for sound effects, and when learning it's by Black Sabbath, it's easy to understand the eerieness of these sound effects, if you're familiar with their previous releases.

    "Supernaut" and "Cornucopia" definitely defines the sound of Black Sabbath's music, from past releases. With the unique voice of Ozzy, and the incredible guitar work of Tony Iommi, it's obvious that this song is easily recognized, no doubt, as Black Sabbath with Ozzy Osbourne. "Snowblind" can be recognized as a common Black Sabbath song in sound, yet it can also be compared to Deep Purple, as well.

    "Laguna Sunrise" is a very pleasant accoustic guitar number, and has some classical music instruments, as this song could be compared to the soft progressive rock of Emerson, Lake & Palmer, and/or a very gentle instrumental piece by Jimmy Page and Led Zeppelin. (Another surprise in the category of "I Didn't Know That Was By...")

    "St. Vitus' Dance" returns the usual classic Black Sabbath rock sound, and the album's closing tune, "Under The Sun/Every Day Comes And Goes" definitely brings back memories of their first album, with its eerieness and mystery.

    It's easily seen that Volume 4 has the common Black Sabbath sound, and also features the common hard-rock sound of the 1970s. It can also be heard that many future bands in the style of today's Alternative Rock and today's hard-rock/heavy metal may or were inspired by the early Ozzy years of Black Sabbath. Its true, that the songs contained on Volume 4 may not be as equally electricfied as their first 3 releases, but one thing is certain for Black Sabbath and Ozzy Osbourne: Their music was truly unique, best described as gloom and doom, bone-crushing music, yet it defined heavy metal music as it was then, and how it is today. Black Sabbath's Volume 4 rocks, and it is truly an interesting album to listen to.

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    Previous Review: #734
    Queen--Queen II
    Next Review: #736
    Duran Duran--Liberty