Geezer Butler, a founder member of Black Sabbath, presents his entire solo records in one convenient place (A box Set) and doesn’t stop there as he also includes lost tunes and other unreleased material. What you get for your money is his three solo albums as well as a fourth bonus disc made up of tht largely unreleased material.

‘Plastic Planet’ was released back in 1995 under the name g/z/r and featured Burton C. Bell of metal titans Fear Factory on vocals and is considered something of a classic of 90s heavy metal. The album saw Geezer’s doomy primarily blues orientated mixed with the more industrial influenced metal sound that was just becoming a big thing in the nineties. This was heavy metal with a thud as songs like the brutal ‘Drive-By Shooting’ raised an eyebrow or two.  Something of a departure from that Classic Sabbath sound this was Geezer taking a chance for sure and certainly not standing still. After the epic opener ‘Catatonic Eclipse’ had twisted and turned its six plus minutes into your ear people should sit more comfortably for what was to come.

With a relatively short turn around 1997’s  ‘Black Science’ which had dropped the G/Z/R name and gone with the simple ‘Geezer’, this album sees Butler again work with drummer Deen Castronovo and guitarist Pedro Howse, and like ‘Plastic Planet’, was produced by Butler and Paul Northfield. Bell was unable to provide vocals this time due to commitments with Fear Factory, but his place on the mic was filled by the then completely unknown Clark Brown who delivered an impressively powerful vocal performance over the album’s high-energy and heavy power grooves. Opening with the ‘Man In The Suitcase’ the direction was similar to that of the debut with the emphasis being on powerful grooves and heavy guitar licks.  There were forays into the unknown like on ‘Mysterons’ with samples and synths being used to enhance the alien and out-of-body experience as the main thrust of the album’s lyrical matter was that of aliens, mystery and that of the unknown. ‘Department S’ had its interesting intro before breaking out and making way for Geezer to open up his bass effects on ‘Area Code 51’ again with its grinding groove metal being the main player. there was ‘Northern Wisdom’ to enter a trip-hop territory with breakbeats before signing off with ‘Trinity Road’

It wouldn’t be until 2005 that Geezer would get the chance to continue his solo explorations, having returned to Sabbath for the 1997 edition of Ozzfest, remaining in the band ever since, but in 2005 he released ‘Ohmwork’, this time under the name GZR again. Once again the album featured Clark Brown on vocals and Pedro Howse on guitar, the difference this time being that drum duties were handled by Chad E Smith (the veteran St. Louis drummer, not the Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer).

With ‘Ohmwork’, it was less industrial metal influences that the previous albums were heavily influenced by, but Geezer still didn’t really lean on his past works with Sabbath although obviously, the influence is there it’s still more contemporary than Sabbath but less than his previous offerings and maybe a more traditional heavy rock sound. Above everything, Geezer was and is a music fan and was passionate about the genre that had served him so well drawing on influences from everything that was going on in rock at the time. The metal of ‘Aural Sects’ to the epic, psychedelia of ‘I Believe’ with its gentle acoustic intro that builds and builds into a swirling epic seven minutes. ‘Ohmwork’ was a welcome addition to Geezer’s solo work and a fine full stop to his trilogy that offered a journey of discovery and experimentation from the Bass player as he expertly weaved his songwriting on one hell of a journey and a decade of discovery.


The bonus disc here features material that will be the disc fans will gravitate towards as it’s taken from throughout the sessions of all three albums with rare and unheard material, including three live tracks lifted from his debut album and feature Burton C. Bell on vocals.  There are plenty of demo versions, instrumentals, and rough mixes on offer spread out over fifteen tracks.


This brand-new collection brings together all three solo albums under one clamshell roof for the first time and also features a booklet with never-before-seen photos from the studio from when the original albums were recorded. wrapping up an impressive set to go with all the other excellent Sabbath packages that have recently been released. Again one not to miss from the very talented and capable hands of Mr. Terance Butler.


*There is also a seventeen-track compilation Best Off to accompany this release with tracks taken from all three solo albums. Obviously entitled ‘The Very Best Of Geezer Butler.

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Author: Dom Daley

Right, let’s start with what a box set should consist of.  Personally, I want something that’s going to wow me and have me waiting for the post in anticipation of its arrival.  Sure there are some that try to be innovative like the Keith Richards box sets with the elasticated straps and pouches but it’s called a box set for a reason and when they cost a pretty penny I want it housed in a sturdy box that will last.


I want it to look like a box, open like a box and contain extras like a nice book from the time period may be a replica laminate or some badges that type of thing and to be fair BMG deliver on the box set front and what you see is attention to detail and a quality finish for your hard-earned.  From the mini replica CD slipcases that house the disc in Japanese disco bags is a nice touch as is the tour poster but to give credit where its due is the book that’s packed with loving detail and really informative labour of love a real credit to the Sabbath catalogue and a box set well worth owning.


Originally released in 1975 (when Sabbath was worse for wear from certain substances and off the pitch wranglings so to speak), the album is so-called because the band felt the recording process was being sabotaged by their former manager Patrick Meehan. The band fired him as they felt they were being tucked up, and he sued them in turn, with lawyers serving writs to the band in the studio. The tales from all four in the band are well known, and the enclosed book expands on those stories.

The book contains very in-depth liner notes, and rare pictures, live shots and rare editions of the album. I think really helps when you can see the passion put into the release.

Then there are 4 CDs in card sleeves and the first is the original album, with its famous cover showing the band facing the same way in the mirror’s reflection. The original concept to signify sabotage was itself sabotaged (ie the black costumes not appearing before a rushed photo shoot) and it was too late to the change the idea, Bill Ward wearing his wife’s red leggings still makes me giggle as to how it makes him look and with it being on the album sleeve he must have been off his trolly.

The opening track Hole In The Sky is classic Sabbath, it’s a great riff, raw and heavy (something influenced by the tension in the studio caused by the legal issues). followed by the juxtaposed ‘Don’t Start’, an acoustic instrumental showcasing Iommi but something of an interlude for me and my love of instrumentals. Heavyweight ‘Symptom Of The Universe’ both in riff and quality of songwriting its classic Sabbath.

‘Megalomania’, is something of a marathon clocking in at 9 minutes. really is of its time as it ebbs and flows from piano with a progy touch, weird harmonies but always with one eye on that Sabbathcrunch and heaviness.

Having a 4 minute instrumental is also a bit dated and certainly of its time.  single is Am I Going Insane (Radio) is another swerve as it turns up the amps again before closing out on ‘The Writ’ again another lengthy number.

Possibly not as commercially accessible with some of the band’s other albums it is worthy of the expansion and maybe time will be kind to this album and people will indulge in the whole package and gaze upon this album with fresh eyes and of course ears.

Discs 2 and 3 are a live show from the 1975 ‘Sabotage’ tour of North American tour, previously unreleased in its entirety. It does have a bit of a high-quality bootleg feel to it having some of; ‘Volume 4’ tracks left in is great to hear alongside classic Sabbath tunes.

Modern rock fans might need to get their heads around having two jams that do go on a bit (13 minutes in fact)   guitar and drum solos intact and present respectively.

With no more bonus material or studio tunes that hit the cutting room floor available it only leaves disc 4 which is a replica of a Japanese single of ‘Am I Going Insane’ (Radio) / ‘Hole In The Sky’.

History is written of one of the least popular Sabbath original line up albums but with this loving upgrade it’s something that can stand shoulder to shoulder with previous lavish box sets from the Sabbath catalogue. Excellent packaging that really does justify its price tag. Hopefully, BMG will continue making the Sabbath Boxsets and seeing as there are only two more albums to cover of the original line up it would be a shame to stop now.

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Author: Dom Daley



Super Deluxe Edition Of The Band’s Sixth Album Features Newly Remastered Original Plus A Complete Live Show Recorded During 1975 Tour


Both 4-CD And 4-LP + 7-Inch Versions Will Be Available From BMG On June 11


pre-order link here

Black Sabbath was embroiled in a protracted legal battle with its former manager in 1975 when the band started recording its sixth studio album, Sabotage. The group felt sabotaged at every turn – hence the album’s title – but that feeling helped fuel the intensity of the new music they were making. In spite of the distractions, the band created one of the most dynamic – and underappreciated – albums of its legendary career.

BMG pays tribute to the patron saints of heavy metal with a collection that includes a newly remastered version of the original album along with a complete live show recorded during the band’s 1975 tour. SABOTAGE: SUPER DELUXE EDITION will be available on June 11 as a 4-CD set and a 4-LP set that includes the same music on 180-gram vinyl plus a bonus 7-inch with the single edit for “Am I Going Insane (Radio)” and “Hole In The Sky” on the flipside, with artwork replicating the very rare Japanese release of the single. Both the 4-CD and 4-LP versions are available for pre-order now: Pre Orders

The newly remastered version of the original album will be available via digital download and streaming services on the same day. Click Here to listen to the newly remastered version of Am I Going Insane (Radio), available today digitally.

Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler, and Bill Ward recorded Sabotage in London and Brussels and co-produced the album with Mike Butcher. The eight songs were released first in the U.S. in July 1975, and then in the U.K. that September. Certified gold in America and Silver in the UK, Sabotage earned positive reviews for hard-hitting tracks like “Hole In The Sky” and “Symptom Of The Universe,” as well as more experimental music like “Supertzar,” which featured harp, Mellotron, and the English Chamber Choir.

SABOTAGE: SUPER DELUXE EDITION introduces 16 live tracks (13 of which are previously unreleased) that were recorded in 1975 during the quartet’s U.S. tour for the album. The performances include songs that span the group’s career, from the title track to its 1970 debut Black Sabbath to “Spiral Architect” and “Sabbra Cadabra” from its previous album, Sabbath Bloody Sabbath (1973). Sabotage is represented as well with live takes of “Hole In The Sky” and “Megalomania.”

The music is accompanied by in-depth liner notes that tell the story of the album through quotes from band members and the music media along with rare photos and press clippings from the era. Also included in the package is a 1975 Madison Square Garden replica concert book and Sabotage 1975 Tour colour poster.

Photo of Sabbath by Sam Emerson