Song Of The Day - 14 Sep 2008: Wicked World

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22 Sep 2008, 3:07

Black Sabbath / Wicked World / Black Sabbath [North America edition] (4) / May 1970

Favorites of 1970 - Day 7: Honoring the great year of 1970 with a week's worth of selections (almost all) from that year!

sablespecter's Album of the Year for 1970 (RDF: 100%)

This likely is no surprise to anyone who has looked at the favorites of 1970 and overlaid them with my overall top artists (or anyone that peeked at the hint provided in the preceding selection.

This is one of the very rare albums for which I love every single track, though not every Album of the Year is necessarily an album for which I like every track. In fact, most AotY are not albums with a 100% RDF.

Aside from the fact that I love every song, I think what I love about this is that it made it clear that something very new was emerging in the world of rock. A new sound which reflected very accurately the dimmer world view: there is more to fear in the world than should be known. Yet if you listen to all the Sabbath songs, they are not of despair. They plumb the dark depths, and look inside the blackest reaches of the human condition, but only to serve as cautionary tales. "Abandon these paths and forsake these ways, lest ye meet a grim fate." This is the foundational cornerstone of / . And despite all the bands that would follow after, none has ever sounded quite like this.

Side 1
Black Sabbath:
A previous SotD selection. This album opener is the one that made the statement: something dreadful and new and foreboding has arrived! Beware! Mostly due to Tony Iommi's sludgelike, dirge paced tritone interval, which gives it that spooky, scary "evil" sound! This set the bar for doom!

The Wizard:
A previous SotD selection All about Gandalf! Well, considering the J.R.R. Tolkien craze at the time, how could they not have a song covering some element of his masterpiece? And though Gandalf has great and sometimes terrible power, he's not really to be feared. Unless you're evil. Then you should be scared. Especially because Ozzy Osbourne is gonna work his own harmonica magick on ya!

Behind the Wall of Sleep:
More evil! Madness and demons! Inspired by the H.P. Lovecraft story Beyond the Wall of Sleep, available in this book!

N.I.B.:
Named after Bill Ward's goatee! \m/
This track and the previous are joined together on the North American release and on the 2004 edition in the Black Box box set (get it!) Listed as Wasp/ Behind the Wall of Sleep/ Bassically/ N.I.B., but "Wasp" is just the opening sequence of "Behind the Wall of Sleep" and "Bassically" is just a name for Geezer Butler's distorted wah-wah bass solo that opens "N.I.B."

Side 2
UK edition - Evil Woman, Don't Play Your Games With Me:
For the 13 Feb 1970 (Friday the 13th!) UK release, second side opener is the first of two covers, originally done by Crow. This song was actually Sabbath's debut single, recorded in December 1969. It is now available over here on the Symptom of the Universe: The Original Black Sabbath 1970-1978 compilation, and is included as the final track on the version of the album included in the Black Box box set.

North America edition - Wicked World:
Today's selection! Here in North America, this side two opener replaced "Evil Woman" which could not appear on the North America release due to publishing rights issues. That's OK by me, because I actually like this song better, and the lyrics* perfectly encapsulate that state of mind and the world at the time. Love Tony's (rare) Stratocaster solo work on this song. If you're a fan of the band Spirit Caravan (one of Wino's many now-defunct projects), hunt around, because they do a great cover of this.

Sleeping Village:
Essentially a four-minute opener to the album-closing track, but a great little over-looked track in its own right.

Warning:
My favorite "Alternate Arrangement/Cover" of 1970, written by drummer and future well-connected journeyman (and Journey man) Aynsley Dunbar for his lates 60s project, The Aynsley Dunbar Retaliation. The original is NOT easy to find, but was honored as the opening SotD selection for the salute to 1970 last week. This track is joined with the preceding track on the North American release and on the 2004 edition in the Black Box. Listed as A Bit of Finger / Sleeping Village / Warning, but "A Bit of Finger" is just the opener of "Sleeping Village."

"Still falls the rain, the veils of darkness shroud the blackened trees, which contorted by some unseen violence, shed their tired leaves, and bend their boughs towards a grey earth of severed bird wings. among the grasses, poppies bleed before a gesticulating death, and young rabbits, born dead in traps, stand motionless, as though guarding the silence that surrounds and threatens to engulf all those that would listen. Mute birds, tired of repeating yesterdays terrors, huddle together in the recesses of dark corners, heads turned from the dead, black swan that floats upturned in a small pool in the hollow. there emerges from this pool a faint sensual mist, that traces its way upwards to caress the chipped feet of the headless martyr's statue, whose only achievement was to die to soon, and who couldn't wait to lose. the cataract of darkness form fully, the long black night begins, yet still, by the lake a young girl waits, unseeing she believes herself unseen, she smiles, faintly at the distant tolling bell, and the still falling rain."



\m/ (ò_ó) \m/

*The world today is such a wicked place /
Fighting going on between the human race /
People got to work just to earn their bread /
While people just across the sea are counting their dead

A politician's job they say is very high /
For he has to choose who's got to go and die /
They can put a man on the moon quite easy /
while people here on Earth are dying of all diseases

A woman goes to work every day after day /
She just goes to work just to earn her pay /
Child sitting crying by a life that's harder /
He doesn't even know who is his father"
Envíos aceptados
Black Sabbath

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