Geezer hails first sober Sabbath album

Black Sabbath bassist Geezer Butler says the band’s reunion album with Ozzy Osbourne is the most professional studio project they’ve done together – because they were sober all the way through.

And he’s revealed that the record might not be called 13 despite official announcements saying it will be.

Butler tells KCALfm: ” None of us have been drinking or doing drugs or anything. It’s a bit more professional in that way. We stuck to a schedule: every day we’d go in at one o’clock and finished at six. Five hours a day and that’s it.

“It’s got the feel of the first three albums, back to the basic rawness. The lyrics are about life, death, doom and everything else. You get Prozac with each album…”

Of the title he explains: “It was sort of a temporary name, so we had something to refer to. It kinda stuck – but I don’t know whether that’s going to be the final title or not.”

The number didn’t just come up because of the year: “Originally we were going to put 13 tracks on the album,” Butler says. “We ended up doing 16, but I’m not sure what’s going to be on the album or what isn’t.”

With the absence of Bill Ward, Sabbath hired Rage Against The Machine drummer Brad Wilk to lay down tracks – a move that surprised some fans. The bassist says it was producer Rick Rubin’s suggestion: “He didn’t want a typical heavy metal drummer on the album because it’s not really a heavy metal album. It’s more heavy rock.

“Rick suggested Brad because he’s more in the vein of Bill Ward. We jammed with him and he sounded great with the stuff, so we went with that. We’re sort of back to the way we used to be in the 70s and that’s Brad’s feel – a sort of jazzy, bluesy feel.”

It’s not been decided whether Wilk will join the band on tour.

Meanwhile, Butler says guitarist Tony Iommi is continuing to respond well to cancer treatment after 14 months – and the bassist reports Ozzy is getting better after being injured in a house fire last week: “He burnt his hand when he was putting the fire about. He’s got it in a plaster cast. He’ll be alright.”

Black Sabbath’s 19th studio album is due out in June.

-Classic Rock Magazine

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