Black Sabbath reunite

So the original Black Sabbath is back. How do you feel about this? Me, I’m a huge Sabbath fan – Sabbath was my first CD, in fact – but I’m kinda hesitant to get too excited. I loved Ozzy’s last solo album, Scream, but he runs hot and cold live. And I’m always a bit skeptical whenever anyone mentions Rick Rubin as producer – what, Nick Raskulinecz too hard to pronounce? Rubin’s hands-off style works great for some bands but not for others. For example, Metallica’s Death Magnetic could have been something really special with a little bit of extra work guidance.

Anyway, I’d love nothing more than for this reunion album and tour to be super-great. But I’ll wait until I actually hear something before getting too giddy.

Here’s the press release:

After much speculation, the original four members of BLACK SABBATH – guitarist Tony Iommi, singer Ozzy Osbourne, bassist Geezer Butler and drummer Bill Ward – have reunited to record their first new studio album in 33 years with producer Rick Rubin (SLAYER, METALLICA) and to embark on a massive world tour in 2012.

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REVIEW: ESP Gus G EC Eclipse

Man, I’m jealous of Gus G. Not only are Firewind awesome, but the dude has also been immortalised in the Eternal Descent graphic novel series. Oh and he replaced Zakk Wylde as Ozzy Osbourne’s guitarist. He appears on Ozzy’s latest album, Scream, which is easily the Prince Of Darkness’s best since No More Tears – and his high-tech shreddering combines the great 80s Euro metal tradition and a more modern sensibility. Gus has several ESP and LTD signature models to his name, including an aggressive Explorer/V hybrid that looks positively evil. The Gus G EC, by contrast, is a slightly – only slightly, mind you – more traditional axe.

This Japanese-made guitar (also available in an LTD model as the GUS-600EC with some slightly different specs – You can buy that model here at Musician’s Friend) is built with set-thru construction, which means the neck is glued in but then shaped to feel like a neck-thru for extra playing comfort. The body is mahogany with a hard rock maple top and white/black ply binding. The neck is three-piece maple (although you can’t see it since it’s finished in black gloss), with a rosewood fretboard and white binding. The carbon nut is 42mm standard, and the back of the neck is a thin U contour that seems to fit right into the webbing between thumb and index finger very comfortably. There are 22 extra jumbo frets, and the fretboard inlays are Firewind flames, which are well applied with only a minimum of epoxy filler around the tricky angles. The decal, which is applied only to the top is a cut a little roughly around the edges, but you wouldn’t notice from even a couple of feet away.

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NEWS: Ozzy reissues Blizzard, Diary with bonuses

Woohoo!!! Ozzy’s classic Blizzard of Oz and Diary of a Madman albums are being reissued with lots of bonus material, including never before seen Randy Rhoads-era live footage and unreleased tracks – and in case you’re wondering, the reissues include Bob Daisley and Lee Kerslake on bass and drums, rather than the reissues from a few years ago where Bob and Lee were replaced with then-current Ozzy band members Rob Trujillo and Mike Bordin. It’s now 30 years since Blizzard was released and redefined Ozzy’s career. Where would we be without Crazy Train or Mr Crowley? Or Flying High Again or Over The Mountain?

PRESS RELEASE:

On May 20th, music fans will have their first taste of reissues from rock icon OZZY OSBOURNE’s catalog of work with the releases of two albums which form the cornerstone of Ozzy Osbourne’s career as a solo artist: “Blizzard of Ozz” and “Diary of a Madman” (Epic Records/Legacy Recordings). Long revered by rock fans around the world, these two albums created a template for hard rock in the 1980s and beyond as they were marked by the ground-breaking and historic union of Ozzy and the late guitar hero Randy Rhoads. These definitive versions of 1980’s “Blizzard of Ozz” (with previously unreleased bonus tracks) and 1981’s “Diary of a Madman” are available individually on vinyl or CD, or together in a deluxe collector’s box. All versions were restored and remastered from the original analog sources by George Marino.

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