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McIver, Joel: The Complete History of Black Sabbath-What Evil Lurks (book)

Given that 2016 brings 'The End Tour', it's not surprising that one of the many notable heavy metal authors has chosen to document the career of the legendary Black Sabbath to help bring their storied career to a close. The Complete History of Black Sabbath: What Evil Lurks is the latest in a long line of books from Joel McIver, who has also tackled bands such as Slayer, Tool, Metallica, Slipknot, Motorhead, and many others in his career, which started back in the late '90s. Though he's already published a Sabbath book a decade ago, this one is a bit different as it brings things completely up to date and closes the story so to speak, but more importantly it comes across as a colorful pictorial history rather than an in-depth look at the history of the inventors of heavy metal. Sure, McIver gives a good initial overview at the humble beginnings of the band, as well as a deeper dive into the years of their first three albums, Black Sabbath, Paranoid, and Master of Reality, but then the train quickly leaves the station and speedily runs through the remainder of the '70s, the Dio years, the brief flirtations with Gillan and Hughes, the Tony Martin albums, Ozzy's instant success with The Blizzard of Oz, the death of Randy Rhoads, Live Aid, and the numerous reunions over the last 20 years. If you want all the details about the albums or behind the scenes drama, this isn't the book for you (go investigate Mick Wall or Martin Popoff's excellent books), but as a quick glossing over of the career of Sabbath, it does the trick. I will say, there are a host of errors and inaccuracies to be found (sorry, but Bev Bevan did not play bass with Sabbath, nor was Rhoads the bassist for Ozzy's band, and Bill Ward could not have quit the band after the Cross Purposes tour because he wasn't in Sabbath at that time), and I don't know if that's due to wanting to get this out quickly to be timely with the ending of the current Black Sabbath tour (though concise editing should happen regardless) or just a continuation of some of the problems that have plagued a few of McIver's previous books. That aside, this is a gorgeous book to look at, and despite it's size and heft, the wealth of vintage and more recent photographs are a wonder to behold for any serious fan, making this much more of a coffee table sized tome that you can show off to your friends and family than a book to curl up in bed with.

So, essential & complete, probably not, but as serious eye candy for the Black Sabbath fanatic, this one is well worth checking out, and even has a forward from Machine Head's Robb Flynn.

Added: October 28th 2016
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Quarto Publishing Group
Hits: 1917
Language: english

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McIver, Joel: The Complete History of Black Sabbath-What Evil Lurks (book)
Posted by Carl Koski on 2016-11-01 10:12:30
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I'm not sure how Joel presented it, but Bill Ward did, in fact, play with Sabbath at the end of the Cross Purposes tour on the South American Monsters of Rock dates. The Buenos Aires show is on YouTube.

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