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View Full Version : Black Sabbath -- Clarkston, MI -- August 6th, 2013


EvilCheeseWedge
08-08-2013, 09:36 AM
DATE: Tuesday, August 6, 2013
BAND: Black Sabbath
VENUE: DTE Energy Music Theatre, Clarkston, MI
TOUR: 13 World Tour
SUPPORT: Andrew W.K.

1. War Pigs
2. Into the Void
3. Under the Sun
4. Snowblind
5. Age of Reason
6. Black Sabbath
7. Behind the Wall of Sleep
8. N.I.B.
9. End of the Beginning
10. Fairies Wear Boots
11. Methademic
12. Rat Salad / Drum Solo
13. Iron Man
14. God is Dead? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VeXXF2DHB2o&t=6m50s)
15. Dirty Women
16. Children of the Grave
17. Paranoid

http://i.imgur.com/G14UBBv.jpg

Black Sabbath live is about the closest thing to a religious experience I'll probably ever have.

This week was my fourth time seeing them, having seen them twice before with Ozzy (Ozzfest 2004 and Ozzfest 2005) as well as once with Dio (touring as Heaven & Hell in 2007.) It was about fucking time to see Black Sabbath with Ozzy do a proper headlining show and not the abbreviated Ozzfest sets from summers past.

Before Black Sabbath took the stage, Andrew W.K. did some DJ thing that was so utterly boring and forgettable that it's hardly worth talking about. He basically did nothing, and the crowd returned about the same to him. The only time the crowd reacted at all was when he played Dio's "Last in Line" - that elicited a cheer and was easily the highlight of a job that could've been done by an iPod.

The sun hadn't even set when Black Sabbath hit the stage with "War Pigs." We were in the closest right section to the stage, in row C, which effectively is about 4th/5th row at the DTE (there's a center section that is slightly more in front, but those rows weren't actually in front of us, and thankfully not blocking our view.) I was thrilled that our tickets put us on the right, because Tony Iommi is a god damn beast. When I was sixteen I started teaching myself how to play guitar for one reason: Tony Iommi. Experiencing his playing that up close was incredible. While his stage persona is to largely plant and attend to business, up close it becomes apparent just how animated he is while he's playing. He's constantly cracking grins at Ozzy, looking to the crowd, and nodding approval. His playing was flawless throughout the set. That this guy had cancer and is still in treatments is just amazing to me. Tony Iommi truly is Iron Man.

Ozzy Osbourne has never been a great vocalist, and at 64, it's practically a miracle that he can still walk, let alone take the stage and yell into a microphone. Vocally his performances have weakened. I last saw him in 2010 with his solo band. Ozzy has gotten noticeably worse since then. It seems like he struggles to hear and find the correct pitch sometimes. That said, during the show, he's still good enough that his mistakes don't detract from the overall show. Where Ozzy fails as vocalist, he really succeeds as an entertainer, however. While he doesn't exactly run around the stage and chuck water at people like in days past, he's still about as active as anyone could hope. I've never seen any performer that can work a crowd quite like Ozzy. His attitude on stage is also fantastic. He's enthusiastic, and humble. When the band launched into Iron Man, Ozzy pointed at Tony: "He is Iron Man!" At the end of the show, Ozzy got onto his knees and did a Wayne's World "we're not worthy" bow to the crowd. During the show, Ozzy constantly points to Tony and Geezer. He's basically a cheerleader for some of the greatest musicians rock's ever had. That's not such a bad thing.

Geezer Butler and Tommy Clufetos were a rock solid rhythm section. The band's mix, even this close, was crystal clear and beautiful. One advantage to a one-guitar band is that you don't get the sonic mud of a mix that other bands become prone to. Feeling Geezer's bass live is one of those feelings that's just :rocker: While I would've preferred Bill Ward on drums, at no point during the set was I actually thinking that. Clufetos is competent drummer and plays with far more energy than I witnessed from Bill in 2004 or 2005. While I still would've preferred Bill's involvement in some, even any capacity, I cannot say that his absence negatively impacted my enjoyment of the concert.

The band's set was a good mix of new and old. "Under the Sun" and "Behind the Wall of Sleep" were new for me, and incredibly welcome. Other classics, like "Into the Void" still seem fierce, and fresh. The new material fit into the set well. "Age of Reason" sounds like something that fell off of Volume 4 and was forgotten about until now. "End of the Beginning" borrows a little too heavily from Sabbath's catalog (e.g. "Black Sabbath" and "Dirty Women") but it still rocked. Ozzy struggles quite a bit on "Methademic" but I was glad it hasn't been cut from the set (yet.) It's a solid uptempo rocker. "God is Dead?" works well live, and is a good reminder of how much better the Rick Rubin produced 13 is compared to those new songs included a decade and a half ago on Reunion.

It is probable that this will be Black Sabbath's last tour, and even more likely that 13 will be their last album. This made the tour somewhat of a "bucket list" event for me. Black Sabbath has been such an enduring influence for me, that to miss them coming around (with new material, no less) would be sacrilege. And if it is their last tour, it's a hell of a way to go out. This is a band that, musically, is tight. They're overwhelmingly enthusiastic about what they're doing. They can drop such serious songs on their legion of fans, but still while cracking a smile. When the guys were standing off stage about to come back on for the obligatory "Paranoid," Tony hit Ozzy over the head with his guitar strap and they both started laughing. When Tony is playing a somber riff, Ozzy strolls over and tries to break his composure.

This is the type of band where you wish you could take the experience, the music, the attitude, the atmosphere of the show, and just freeze it in time, and take it with you into the void.

(My friend filmed God is Dead? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VeXXF2DHB2o&t=6m50s) from the show. I cleaned up the audio a bit in Pro Tools.)

IrritatedTrout
08-08-2013, 01:41 PM
Great review.:blaze:

PowerMaiden
08-08-2013, 02:54 PM
Great review.:blaze:

indeed !

I was fortunate enough to have seen them on their 1999 reunion and it was magical (much better than when I saw them in 1986 with Ray Gillen :eyes: ) so I don't feel I need to see them anymore but if this would have hit Montréal I would have gone for sure


Cheers !
PowerMaiden

Phil709
08-08-2013, 03:43 PM
It seems like he struggles to hear and find the correct pitch sometimes.

Does Ozzy even know what pitch is? I've always questioned Ozzy's technical knowledge of music. Can anyone discuss this? I mean, from what I remember in his book, Ozzy was just some dude from Birmingham who didn't want to become a typical working-class citizen of England, so he claimed he could sing, posted an ad, and was lucky enough to be recruited by Iommi and Butler.

He has a distinctive voice for sure and is decent enough at singing. In his book he says his contributions to the music of Black Sabbath was coming up with the melodies for the songs but how good is he technically if at all?

Sepultura69
08-08-2013, 08:00 PM
This review is getting me really pumped for the 28th. I am also seeing them on the 3rd of September at the "sold out" LA Sports Arena. :rocker:

DisposableJustice
08-08-2013, 08:28 PM
Great review; I'm really bummed that this isn't coming to Denver and I can't afford to travel right now, so I am crossing my fingers that maybe they do another batch of tour dates maybe at the end of this year, cause while I never fully got into Sabbath, their mark on metal history is reason enough for me to hope for a Denver date

Coma323
08-09-2013, 01:27 AM
Ozzy struggles quite a bit on "Methademic" but I was glad it hasn't been cut from the set (yet.) It's a solid uptempo rocker.

Haha you spoke too soon, they didn't play it last night in CT.

IrritatedTrout
08-09-2013, 05:47 AM
Yeah, before my show I was afraid something would get cut.

EvilCheeseWedge
08-09-2013, 07:59 AM
Great review.:blaze:

Thanks! :rocker:

indeed !

I was fortunate enough to have seen them on their 1999 reunion and it was magical (much better than when I saw them in 1986 with Ray Gillen :eyes: ) so I don't feel I need to see them anymore but if this would have hit Montréal I would have gone for sure


Cheers !
PowerMaiden

Haha, wow, you saw them with Ray Gillen? I bet that was a bit interesting. I'm totally jealous you saw the 1999 reunion tour. I'm sure Ozzy was slightly more with it then, and of course, Bill was still in :light:

Does Ozzy even know what pitch is? I've always questioned Ozzy's technical knowledge of music. Can anyone discuss this? I mean, from what I remember in his book, Ozzy was just some dude from Birmingham who didn't want to become a typical working-class citizen of England, so he claimed he could sing, posted an ad, and was lucky enough to be recruited by Iommi and Butler.

He has a distinctive voice for sure and is decent enough at singing. In his book he says his contributions to the music of Black Sabbath was coming up with the melodies for the songs but how good is he technically if at all?

I don't ascribe any technical knowledge to Ozzy at all. I just think that at some points right now he seems to have some serious trouble hearing the music, and as a result, his singing is even more off-pitch than normal. I'm just basing on that it sounds to me like someone trying to sing without being able to properly hear. Most of the guys in Black Sabbath don't have much technical musical knowledge. Tony kinda speaks to that in his book too.

Haha you spoke too soon, they didn't play it last night in CT.

Wow, I guess I called that one :allan: Not that it was too surprising though... Even with Dio the Sabbath sets tended to get shorter by a song or two as the tour wore on. But "Methademic" seemed really tough for Ozzy.

adamclark52
08-09-2013, 08:42 AM
I saw the 1999 tour with Pantera. I honestly have fonder memories of Pantera but Sabbath was awesome too. And Ozzy was in much better shape then.

markrz
08-09-2013, 09:11 AM
I'm still on the fence about our show which is on Monday. On the one hand, I don't want to spend the money and trouble to go to a sub-par show. On the other hand, as many people have observed, this is most definitely it: the last chance; if I don't do it now, I'll never get to make the choice again.

adamclark52
08-09-2013, 09:41 AM
I'm still on the fence about our show which is on Monday. On the one hand, I don't want to spend the money and trouble to go to a sub-par show. On the other hand, as many people have observed, this is most definitely it: the last chance; if I don't do it now, I'll never get to make the choice again.

You should just do it.

Coma323
08-09-2013, 11:04 AM
After Paranoid last night Ozzy did say they'll be back, so whatever that mean...

Phil709
08-09-2013, 12:44 PM
Wow, I've seen many people complain about Ozzy's performance of Methademic and some even correctly predicted that it would be dropped from the set list (see their set list for August 8, 2013). How disappointing. I hope it was just a timing issue and that they start playing it again or at least replace it with another song.

HandOfDoom
08-09-2013, 04:08 PM
Great review! thanks for the read ;)

es156
08-11-2013, 03:42 PM
Wow, I guess I called that one :allan: Not that it was too surprising though... Even with Dio the Sabbath sets tended to get shorter by a song or two as the tour wore on. But "Methademic" seemed really tough for Ozzy.

They didn't play Methademic in Philadelphia last night either. I am officially blaming you for this.

:mad:

IrritatedTrout
08-11-2013, 04:45 PM
About halfway through the set in DC I was starting to cross my fingers that they'd still do it. Hopefully they don't cut anything else for the rest of the shows though.

Bloodcurse
08-11-2013, 09:05 PM
when I saw them in 1986 with Ray Gillen

LUCKY!!! *Napoleon Dynomite voice*

Blitzkrieg Witchcraft
08-11-2013, 09:12 PM
I saw Sabbath with Ray Gillen, as well. Got an Iommi guitar pick somewhere from that show. That was the tour they did with Wasp.

Coma323
08-12-2013, 01:56 AM
About halfway through the set in DC I was starting to cross my fingers that they'd still do it. Hopefully they don't cut anything else for the rest of the shows though.
I've never heard Methademic since I only got the regular edition so at least they cut a song that I don't know rather than a song that I like, that's how I look at it. Still though hearing more songs is obviously better and all...

EvilCheeseWedge
08-12-2013, 08:47 AM
They didn't play Methademic in Philadelphia last night either. I am officially blaming you for this.

:mad:

:lol:

Sorry :bliss:

Hope you enjoyed the Philly show!

es156
08-13-2013, 09:32 PM
:lol:

Sorry :bliss:

Hope you enjoyed the Philly show!

I wasn't at the Philly show, just observing that they had skipped that song 2 shows in a row. Now it has been 3 shows so I am going to assume that it is gone for good.

Jerk.

;)

velvetgrass
08-14-2013, 05:46 PM
Before Black Sabbath took the stage, Andrew W.K. did some DJ thing that was so utterly boring and forgettable that it's hardly worth talking about. He basically did nothing, and the crowd returned about the same to him. The only time the crowd reacted at all was when he played Dio's "Last in Line" - that elicited a cheer and was easily the highlight of a job that could've been done by an iPod.

What's the point of having someone open for you who has at least four solo albums out, if they're not going to play a single song off any of them and instead are just going to pick previously recorded music by other bands to play out loud? What's the difference between Andrew W.K.'s act and the music played over the P.A. while the crew sets up the Black Sabbath stage? I just don't understand what does he do, just sit on stage while the songs he selects are being played?

EvilCheeseWedge
08-14-2013, 09:23 PM
What's the point of having someone open for you who has at least four solo albums out, if they're not going to play a single song off any of them and instead are just going to pick previously recorded music by other bands to play out loud? What's the difference between Andrew W.K.'s act and the music played over the P.A. while the crew sets up the Black Sabbath stage? I just don't understand what does he do, just sit on stage while the songs he selects are being played?

Yeah, you basically got it. He just sits there. Air drums a bit. Every once and awhile he'd say something about Black Sabbath and use a t-shirt gun to fire a Black Sabbath shirt into the crowd. And maybe twice he unleashed some beach balls into the crowd.