BLACK SABBATH Get No Respect

J.D. Considine of Canada's The Globe And Mail writes: To be ranked among rock's all-time greatest, you'd have to have changed the course of musical history, invented a genre, or influenced a generation or two of musicians. You'd need to be a household name, have a back catalogue peppered with undisputed classics, and enjoy the blessings of the critical establishment.

And yet BLACK SABBATH, which fits nearly all those criteria, somehow remains excluded from the ranks of certified rock gods. Granted, it's not as if the band has been forgotten. This spring, Warner Music unleashed "Black Box", a deluxe set collecting the band's first eight studio albums, Meanwhile, the original lineup — singer Ozzy Osbourne, guitarist Tony Iommi, bassist Geezer Butler and drummer Bill Ward — have reunited for this year's Ozzfest, Osbourne's annual heavy-metal road show.

Outside the heavy-rock demimonde, however, this news has been cause for surprisingly little celebration. Not only has there been a noticeable lack of appreciative retrospectives in the mainstream rock press, SABBATH's impact and importance doesn't even get acknowledged in passing. A recent Rolling Stone list of rock "immortals," for instance, found room for pioneers in R&B, reggae, hip-hop and punk, but neglected to acknowledge BLACK SABBATH and its contributions. (Osbourne, at least, did make the Top 10 of Blender's "Craziest Pop Stars Ever!") Read more.

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