The past two years have been quite eventful for Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi. The legendary guitarist confronted his own mortality and his band’s legacy and seems to have been successful on both counts.
Diagnosed with lymphoma last year, Iommi underwent treatments while recording the new Sabbath album, and, by his account, those treatments worked. He also took on his band’s legacy by regrouping with Ozzy Osbourne and Geezer Butler for their first album in 35 years (Brad Wilk sat in for disgruntled drummer Bill Ward). Produced by Rick Rubin, the new record went to #1 in the U.S. and around the world and lived up to longtime fans’ lofty expectations.
With Sabbath coming to Jiffy Lube Live this Friday, I asked Iommi about making the new record and remaking his relationship with Ozzy.
After the band reconvened, was there a moment when you were aware that it was working, and working well?
We knew it would work. I don’t think there was any doubt about that. As soon as we went into rehearsals and started doing it, we were right back to where we should be, and better. I thought, this time, it worked better than it ever has...