Dehumanizer

Black Sabbath

Reprise, 1992

http://www.blacksabbath.com

REVIEW BY: Eric E5S16

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 07/27/2009

Ronnie James Dio was the first singer to replace Ozzy Osbourne as lead vocalist for Britsh heavy metal icons Black Sabbath.  He initially recorded two albums with the band in 1980 and 1981.  Dio left the band in 1982, but came back ten years later to record his third album with the band, Dehumanizer.  The Dehumanizer lineup lacked original drummer Bill Ward, but founding members Geezer Butler (bass) and Tony Iommi (guitars) were on board, along with Vinny Appice on drums.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The basic building blocks of heavy metal are clearly heard throughout this album.  By the early '90s, though, hair bands had been popular for a most of a decade, and that influence is felt in the songs on this disc.  Still, many of the tracks show an evolution toward a harder heavy metal style, feeling the influence of such bands as Metallica and Megadeth, who were just starting out at the time.

The album starts out with “Computer God,” a cut that has a more ’80s-esque hair band sound than any other song on the album.  This track is like Bon Jovi meeting heavy metal in the middle, sort of like the later decades of Kiss.  “After All (The Dead)” has a more mysterious, updated heavy metal sound, reminiscent of “War Pigs” from Black Sabbath’s 1970 album Paranoid, with Osbourne on vocals.

The Metallica/Megadeth influence is heard in the songs “TV Crimes” (which is definitely more in the speed metal category), “Letters From Earth,” “Time Machine” (the second version of which is from  is Wayne’s World) and “Master Of Insanity.”  “Sins Of The Father” is in particular very good, while “Buried Alive” is louder but maybe not better.  “Too Late” is a bit mellower but is another good song, and “I” has a cool start before kicking into another memorable track.

For the average metal fan, Dehumanizer definitely has some solid tunes.  Most still say that Ozzy made Black Sabbath, but the band moved on with other singers, some better than others.  By the mid-80s, guitarist Tony Iommi was for a time the only original member in the band’s lineup. Of the post-Ozzy albums, some are better than others, but overall, Dehumanizer is a solid release.

Rating: A-

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