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Widely called the last great album Black Sabbath recorded with their powerhouse lineup – Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward – Sabbath Bloody Sabbath is still considered a classic and influential release. Yet there was a time in the summer of 1973 when it looked like the follow-up to Vol. 4 might have to be scrapped.“I just got stuck and couldn’t think of anything to write,” Iommi told me in 2009. “I…

In 1987, MTV released the iconic Headbangers Ball during the height of the heavy metal movement. It quickly became the premier destination for all things heavy, even helping lead grunge into the mainstream in the early ‘90s.When Nirvana appeared on the show in 1991, Kurt Cobain famously wore a yellow ballgown. “It’s Headbangers Ball, so I thought I’d wear a gown,” Cobain said, before pointing to Krist Novoselic and adding, “He wouldn’t wear his tux. He…

The music industry was going through seismic changes at the turn of the 21st Century, thanks to accelerating advancement of technology, the Internet and a specific revolutionary catalyst called the MP3 file, which allowed fans to indiscriminately share music, both digitally and illegally, via groundbreaking digital tools like Napster. Every musical artist on earth, without exception, was caught in the crosshairs of this new technology and the sudden, illicit consumer behavior it encouraged — most…

There are stories sometimes so rewarding and full that they can’t be completely told in just one song. Luckily a number of acts in music history have revisited characters and tales of a multiple songs. One such band is up-and-comers The Black Moods, who turned heads last year with their single “Sunshine” and are building up to their new album with “She Gets Out,” a song that carries over a narrative.The band tells us, “‘She…

In 2001, System of a Down reached new heights with their Toxicity album, but rather than rush into a follow-up, the band opted to release an odds and ends collection called Steal This Album in 2002. By the time 2004 rolled around, the band had plenty to say and a lot of music set to come out of them.”The whole world’s gone crazy over the past couple of years, so that’s brought out a lot…

As the year winds down, Incubus vocalist Brandon Boyd is turning his focus to his solo music, announcing that his latest solo effort, Echoes and Cocoons, is set to arrive next spring. Coinciding with that announcement, we’ve also got new music with the song and video for “Pocket Knife” arriving, complete with artwork for the single done by Boyd himself. And it’s the artistic single artwork that inspired us to reach out to Boyd to…

In May 1995, Metallica entered The Plant Studios in Sausalito, Calif., to record a double album as the follow-up to 1991’s Metallica (aka The Black Album), which catapulted the band from thrash heroes to mainstream rock stars. But by February 1996, Metallica had only finished about half the songs, so they scrapped the double-album plan and opted, instead, to release two records one year apart.The first, Load, came out June 4, 1996. Then in July…

The end of the ‘90s was a time of healing for Korn vocalist Jonathan Davis. After a decade of indulging his most dangerous and depraved rock ‘n’ roll fantasies and suffering a breakdown at the end of the ride, Davis decided to get sober and tone down his extracurricular activities. In conjunction, Korn hired dedicated studio producer Brendan O’Brien to help them stay focused and work at peak efficiency. The resulting album, Issues, came out on Nov.…

Late Metallica legend Cliff Burton left a gigantic impact on heavy metal and remains one of the most influential musicians in the genre’s history. Watch these musicians talk about the bassist, plus a special addition from Cliff’s father Ray.Fans often refer to Cliff Burton as the spiritual battery of Metallica, providing pummeling energy and a rhythmic backbone to the legendary band’s early works. But Dave Mustaine shared a lesser known story about Cliff, explaining how…

When Ozzy Osbourne released his third solo album Bark at the Moon on Nov. 15, 1983, it had been two years since the critically acclaimed Diary of a Madman came out. To say that the period in between the records was turbulent would be an understatement of epic proportions, as it saw a slew of personal and professional issues take place with almost none of them for the better. Still, the former Black Sabbath frontman…

The commercial breakthrough for megastars KISS was 1976’s Destroyer, a slick polished hard rock album that contained the ballad “Beth,” the band’s most successful single. After its release the band faced a critical fork in the road. Either they could continue down path of mainstream success and seek to continue to appeal to their ever-growing fanbase or they could shake up the formula and return to some of the grit and urgency of their first…

Maneskin have had a banner year, to put it mildly.The young Italian rock band, who have a current hit in the United States with their song “Beggin’,” won the international Eurovision Song Contest in May, weeks after winning the biggest song contest in their home country at Sanremo Music Festival. Taking that success across the pond, Maneskin completed their first U.S. visit early this month — it included their American TV debut on The Tonight Show…

After being kicked out of space rock band Hawkwind following an arrest in Canada for possession of cocaine (the charges were later dropped since he actually had methamphetamine), Lemmy Kilmister formed Motörhead, named after a song he wrote for his former band.By the time they released their third album, 1979’s Bomber, the band had developed a strong underground following in England with a sound that mixed the swing of early rock ‘n’ roll, the groove…

Proving the success of his first solo album, Blizzard of Ozz, was no fluke, Ozzy Osbourne reestablished himself as the wildman of commercial metal with Diary of a Madman, which came out on Nov. 7, 1981.Following a similar structure to that of Blizzard, Osbourne skillfully combined storming fist-in-the-air rockers like “Over the Mountain,” “Flying High Again” and “S.A.T.O.” with more subtle and dynamic songs such as “You Can’t Kill Rock and Roll” and the heartrending power…

I vividly remember the very last night of 1999. Okay… I take that back. I vividly remember buying a handful of ecstasy pills shaped like triangles and named after a car (this was back when ecstasy was still ecstasy…. before it’s friend Molly came along, for you Gen Z kids out there) in the afternoon of Dec. 31 of 1999, then going to a house-party with friends and my then boyfriend… unsure if the world…