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Master of Reality

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Editors’ Notes

All eight of the original Black Sabbath albums featuring Ozzy Osbourne as singer have something special about them. It’s no coincidence, though, that the hardest-core fans center on the earliest ones, and many who find Paranoid too familiar or obvious prefer either the self-titled first album or Sabbath's third studio album, Master of Reality. In retrospect, this album is said to have inspired every stoner rock band worth talking about. On a few key songs (“Children of the Grave,” “Lord of This World,” and “Into the Void”), guitarist Tony Iommi downtuned his guitar by several tones to achieve a heavier sound, a practice now extremely common among guitarists in extreme metal subgenres. “Sweet Leaf,” starting with the sound of Iommi coughing, is a paean to marijuana. “After Forever” issues a pro-God message from group lyricist Butler, who was tired of defending Sabbath from "satanist" charges. “Children of the Grave” is anti-war. Most surprising is the heartfelt ballad “Solitude,” which includes Iommi on flute, piano, and fingerpicked guitar under a medieval-influenced melody line.

Customer Reviews

Buy the album, not select tracks

This is my first time listening to the whole album front to back, and some songs I never heard before. Young folk like me: buy the whole album, sit down and listen to the whole album. It's an experience very unlike modern records where basically every song is a single; no, here they're all great songs but they're better together. Don't just turn on a song quick while you have a couple minutes in the car. Go to your room, put on a nice pair of headphones, let the music drown out all distractions, and just let it take you on a journey. That's how you listen to classics like this.


So many bands sound like them but there is only one . Sit down young kids and see where your slayer and metallicas come from .

Buy this one on vinyl, no bass in digital.

This is indeed an awesome record. I would strongly urge people to buy this on vinyl. I have most of their early stuff on CD, and the low end bass gets completely lost on ALL digital formats (cd and otherwise). otherwise it's a fun listen. After forever is a personal favorite.


Formed: 1969 in Birmingham, England

Genre: Metal

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Black Sabbath have been so influential in the development of heavy metal rock music as to be a defining force in the style. The group took the blues-rock sound of late-'60s acts like Cream, Blue Cheer, and Vanilla Fudge to its logical conclusion, slowing the tempo, accentuating the bass, and emphasizing screaming guitar solos and howled vocals full of lyrics expressing mental anguish and macabre fantasies. If their predecessors clearly came out of an electrified blues tradition, Black Sabbath took...
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