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Why I ❤️ Black Sabbath’s Heaven And Hell, by Geoff Tate

Operation: Mindcrime and former Queensrÿche singer Geoff Tate pays homage to Ronnie James Dio’s Black Sabbath debut, Heaven And Hell



“I’m a huge fan of the three studio albums that Black Sabbath made with Ronnie James Dio on vocals. I suppose I like Heaven And Hell the best of the three because it was the trilogy’s first. I still remember buying my original copy on vinyl. 

“The five members of what became Queensrÿche sat around and listened to that album, talked about it and really digested it. It was a great springboard to push our own creativity. 

“As a well-respected guy who’d been working with bands like Iron Maiden, Martin Birch did a great job with the production. He really helped to bring the songs to life. 

“One thing that’s sometimes forgotten is that Black Sabbath were on a downward curve until Heaven And Hell. After sacking Ozzy Osbourne they were written off by just about everybody. It was almost expected that they would fade out.

“But together with Ronnie they made an extraordinary album, and of course the opposite thing happened. The only thing I don’t like about it is that it could have been longer. Eight songs aren’t enough. But that’s how records were made in those days.

“For me, Heaven And Hell was where it all began. It had so much musicality. Sabbath took their songs into areas I’d never experienced before. Maybe the best compliment I could pay is that it was elegant yet very brutal.”

Geoff Tate was speaking with Dave Ling.