Black Sabbath’s Self-titled Debut Album Turns 50

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On this day in 1970 “Black Sabbath” released their self-titled debut album. This it it folks, this is the album that pioneered the sound of “Heavy Metal,” and it’s widely acknowledged as the first true blue “Metal” album. It’s easy to see why. Everything about this album paved the way for a lot of common tropes of the genre. The opening track “Black Sabbath” is “Doom Metal” through and through, the lyrical themes of Lucifer and the occult that are commonly affiliated with some of the more dark sub-genres of “Metal” are here, and just look at the cover art, that’s “Black Metal” and “Gothic” imagery if I ever did see it, but what really single-handedly invented the genre is without a doubt Tony Iommi’s guitar style. When Iommi was 17 years old he sliced the tips off two of his fingers while working at a sheet metal factory. Refusing to give up playing guitar, Iommi made prosthetic tips out of melted plastic bottles and detuned his guitar because the looser strings were easier to play, and with much distortion Iommi created the pivotal “Metal” guitar sound that you hear in every “Metal” song today. Albums that are the first of it’s kind are rare, and here is the album that everyone in the genre of “Heavy Metal” music owes a lot to. Happy Anniversary.

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