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AAA Music | 28 January 2022

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| On 21, May 2012

Birmingham, 19th May

Black Sabbath are playing a tiny venue for them in Birmingham and this is the day a lot of metal fans have been looking forward to for a long time. They are kept waiting even longer with a two hour anticipation after they enter the venue. It’s all worth the wait though, this could be their last intimate concert and from when the first chord ignites you realise why they are legends in the metal world. They open with a montage of their material which merges into the amazing ‘Into the Void’ which is received by a standing ovation. The first thing you notice is the lack of Bill Ward on drums, which is a real shame but he could not work out an agreement with the band to play tonight’s show. So Tommy Clufetos Ozzy Osbourne’s drummer is filling in for tonight’s show.

Tommy does a good job even though he has big shoes to fill, not missing a beat and doing an amazing drum solo before the last onslaught of songs. Tonight you hear all the classics from the haunting melodies of ‘Black Sabbath’ where Ozzy’s expressions are just magical to the anthem ‘Iron Man’ which Tony Iommi delivers with a new fierceness. There are a lot of smiles going back and forth between the three Sabbath men and you can see they are really enjoying playing together again after the long absence. The crowd is really tightly packed together showing a well over sold venue for the show, with e-tickets being cancelled and tickets going for over two hundred pounds online. I think the highlights of the set are the magical song ‘The Wizard’ which features Ozzy on the mouth organ, which he throws into the crowd at the end of the song. Also the riff laden ‘Sweet Leaf and N.I.B.’ which are classics in the metal world. This nativity in black has really impressed everyone in the venue even youngsters that had not been that into Sabbath before only being taken by their parents cause they don’t want their kids to miss a concert that will go down in history.

There is going to be a DVD made of the performance so they will be able to relive it again and again.
If tonight’s show is anything to go by the fans at the Download Festival have really got something to look forward to.

All members of the band have put heart into this performance in their hometown there might have been less buckets of water but I think it has been an equally wet venue tonight with the theatrics running at boiling point and everyone including Ozzy exhausted at the end. You wouldn’t believe that Tony is ill with cancer with the performance he put in tonight, a real professional and he shows how a show should be played and that even though he is ill he can still rock. This is definitely my gig of the year so far and I will always remember this show.

Black Sabbath – Setlist
Into the Void
Under the Sun
War Pigs
Wheels of Confusion
Electric Funeral
Black Sabbath
The Wizard
Behind the wall of Sleep
Fairies Wear Boots
Lord of this World
Tomorrow’s Dream
Sweet Leaf
Symptom of the Universe
Drum Solo
Iron Man
Dirty Women
Children of the Grave
Sabbath Bloody Sabbath

Daniel Cairns