The Eternal Idol: Black Sabbath

Rating: 80%

Black_Sabbath_The_Eternal_Idol.jpgIn 1987, “The Eternal Idol” was released by Black Sabbath. This record begins the Tony Martin era as he took over vocals for several years. The Tony Martin era is also one of the most overlooked eras and to me is one of the least respected eras among Black Sabbath fans. Just like the record before “Seventh Star”, Tony Iommi is the only remaining original member of the band with the exception of keyboardist Geoff Nicholls. You also have Eric Singer returning on drums. Then you add in bassist Bob Daisley.

As far as production, this record was mixed well and sounds great. It’s crystal clear and polished. This record although, still lacks some of the excitement and energy that Black Sabbath is known for, will begin to stabilize the band as they move into the 1990’s.  With regards to low points, I really don’t hear any.

Musicianship, I think the band plays and sounds great. I have always admired Tony Martin. I think that his vocal range is a good combination of Ozzy, Dio, Hughes, and Gillan. I think that his vocals is enough to have him stand out rather than trying to sound like one of the three or actually four singers. He proves that he is one hell of a vocalist on this record. I believe that Tony Iommi is still on top of his career with regards to song writing. He still produces some great riffs and leads. Bob Daisley shows that he is still on top of his career as well as a bassist. This guy has been around for a long time from Kahvas Jute to Rainbow and Ozzy Osbourne. Drummer Eric Singer has been around as well. His drumming style brings Black Sabbath into a more modern sound. He is pretty damn good on this record.  Keyboardist Geoff Nicholls is still hitting keys and helping Tony Iommi with song writing. He creative compositions adds to Black Sabbath that helps to make the music sound good and modern.

Song structures are nicely done. Lot’s of great tempos, melodies and harmony. There’s lot’s of great riffs on here and for the most part, the song “Eternal Idol” itself brings a little of the darkness back into Black Sabbath. This record is Black Sabbath in the rebuilding process, but that process is good. Again, I think that Tony Martin is one of the underrated vocalists of the band.

Track listing:

Side one
“The Shining” – 6:00
“Ancient Warrior” – 5:28
“Hard Life to Love” – 5:00
“Glory Ride” – 4:49
Side two
“Born to Lose” – 3:43
“Nightmare” – 5:19
“Scarlet Pimpernel” – 2:05
“Lost Forever” – 4:03
“Eternal Idol” – 6:33

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