Customer Reviews


112 Reviews
5 star:
 (87)
4 star:
 (15)
3 star:
 (4)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:
 (5)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Paranoid.
What the hell can you say about this classic that hasn't been said already?

Not much, so I'll simply say, if you haven't heard this album, and you call yourself a metalhead - you're not you know.

Black Sabbath's second album is a masterpiece, pushing aside much of the blues of their first album, and if anything, becoming even darker in tone, as the...
Published on 3 Jun 2010 by Azz McMahon

versus
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good but clipped sound
I wanted to comment not so much on the over-reverberant, dull sound of the 5.1 DTS, but on the mastering of the two CDs.

The CDs (the original album and rehearsals) do sound good. I was surprised therefore when I transferred them and opened with a wave editor. Both have substantial amounts of clipping (that is, the level is set so high waveform peaks flatten...
Published on 24 April 2009 by res


‹ Previous | 1 212 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Paranoid., 3 Jun 2010
By 
Azz McMahon (NSW, Australia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Paranoid (Audio CD)
What the hell can you say about this classic that hasn't been said already?

Not much, so I'll simply say, if you haven't heard this album, and you call yourself a metalhead - you're not you know.

Black Sabbath's second album is a masterpiece, pushing aside much of the blues of their first album, and if anything, becoming even darker in tone, as the topics of war, drug abuse and erm... fairies in boots fuelled the imagination of Geezer Butler and Ozzy Osbourne, while Iommi's riffs were forged of purest metal.

War Pigs, Iron Man, Electric Funeral, the jazz toned Planet Caravan, Bill Ward's moment of glory on Rat Salad, the bleak Hand of Doom.... these alone justify getting the album.

Paranoid itself has become a classic track - and one of the signature tunes of Black Sabbath - but I liken it to the first albatross around Sabbath's neck - fortunately they finally stopped playing it when Heaven and Hell was formed - I'm not going to deny it's legacy in Sabbath's hallowed career, but the only way this song works for me is Sabbath and Ozzy performing it, and it isn't overly Sabbath in sound - sounds more like a quick Zeppelin jam musically (but considering it was the last song recorded for the album as a "filler track", it's not surprising given it was very melodic by Sabbath's standards at the time, that it became a single, and placed Sabbath into superstar status).

The deluxe edition of this album released recently is brilliant - the quadrophonic mix is amazing - true Sabbath fans who haven't heard this yet - go and get it, it's well worth it.

This album is immortal - and rightfully one of the albums by which all metal is judged against.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


39 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Probably the best "Paranoid" CD, 4 April 2009
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Paranoid (Audio CD)
Rejoice, people - this is truly the exception from the "rule" that new remasters sound worse than the older CD editions! This is probably the best "Paranoid".

It's definitly better than the 2004 Black Box release (don't believe what J. Siegler says), and I believe it's better than the 1996 Castle CD. There are some other CD editions which I have never listened or I heard them a long time ago, but I don't believe they are better.
And there's edition which I own for some time, 2001 Sanctuary mini vinyl replicas 8-disc box-set.
This new 2009 edition is released 5 days ago on the same label - Sanctuary. I must say that guys there now their job. So - congratulations and respect to Sanctuary!

After detailed analysis it seems to me that they used the same source as in 2001, but remastered it in a different way. Both 2001 and 2009 editions have loudness boosting just very slightly over the edge, almost unnoticeable, which makes them incomparably better than most of today's releases with ridiculously boosted loudness. So there's almost NO trace of small dynamic range, distortion and compression.
When I compared 2001 and 2009 edition:
2001 has less noise and more bass; 2001 sounds muddy, with prominent low range, while 2009 sounds more natural, with prominent mid-range.
They both sound good, and eventually it's up to the listener to decide which sound he/she prefers. I don't know which one sounds closer to the original 1970 vinyl, I could know that only if I put that LP (but in mint condition!) on a high-end turnatable and make comparison - but that will never happen. So, my final conclusion is: I FEEL that this 2009 CD is the closest thing to the original record.

But this new remaster also came out as a double LP 10 days ago - if someone is interested in that. That vinyl edition should sound even better, if you have the right equipment in your home.

All this being said, for me the most important value of this new edition is not remastered sound of the original album (disc 1), but bonus tracks.
Disc 2 is NOT CD, but DVD audio, which contains 1974 QUADROPHONIC MIX. I'm not really interested in that, but I know there are some who are.
The reason I bought this (I didn't know and didn't believe that disc 1 will have such a superior sound!) is disc 3. It contains 8 album tracks, but in a way that no-one has ever heard before! 5 of them are instrumentals and 3 are alternative versions! All unreleased for 38 years and 9 months! Maybe some will not be thrilled with that, but I am! It was fantastic experience yesterday for me to listen those songs, which are full of interesting surprises. Because when you intuitively feel/expect to hear something at some moment, you don't hear that, and so that gives you completely new listening experience of that classic!

Also, there's beautiful 24-page booklet, with tons of linear notes and related pictures, even from the original Paranoid tour programme!

There was several times when this CD was announced, and then stopped at the last moment, but I guess now Iommi definitely lost legal battles. There are already announcements of releasing the other Sabbath classics as expanded deluxe editions. I feel that we won't have to wait much to get "Master of reality" unreleased out-takes...

I'm sorry if all this happened against the will of Iommi & Sabbath, I do respect them and their wishes, but only up to a point - because as much I love Sabbath, even more I love myself. :D And I want Sabbath unreleased stuff... me and thousands of other Sabbath fans. And I feel that we are true fans, even if we'll give money for something that Iommi didn't want to see the light of the day. And these 2001 and 2009 Sanctuary releases, although without blessing from the band, are infinitely better products than 2004 Black Box which had all the blessings.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Classic Sabbath Album, 28 May 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Paranoid (Audio CD)
Black Sabbath were the fathers of modern Heavy Rock (Zeppelin never claimed to be 'heavy'...just 'Rock' incidentally)and this album contains some of their greatest tracks...Paranoid, Warpigs, Fairies.. Having ownes all the Sabbath on vinyl for the past 20 years, I'd say that if you only have enough for one Sabbath album, get this one..chapter and verse of 1970s British Heavy Rock.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 Stars for the main album, 3 stars for the extras., 6 April 2009
By 
Fletch-a-sketch "Fletch" (Wiltshire, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Paranoid (Audio CD)
Disc 1 the main album is worthy of 5 stars the album which brought black Sabbath to prominence via the single `Paranoid', and its spooky follow up `Iron Man'. What can you say about an album which has inspired many a guitarist over the last 40 years? If it's not 'Smoke on the water' then it's the riff from 'Iron man' you hear in guitar ships to this day. This deluxe 3 disc edition gives us a nicely mastered original album complete with an original looking vertigo swirl LP image on the disc. The mastering seems to be quite well regarded and certainly does not suffer greatly from that modern compression that so many reissues discs do suffer from these days.

Disc 2 is an Audio DVD and NOT a DVD Audio (no MLP) or SACD, this amount to a disappointment for me of this set. While it is nice to have a version of the original QUAD mix for the album it is only in lossy DTS and is not from a very good source. So full marks for effort in providing this disc but marks dropped for not getting a better source. That said the quad mix does open up the sound field quite a lot and manages to enhance the power of the original album on many of the tracks. Also of concern for a deluxe edition where you expect good sound quality the stereo track on the disc is lossy Dolby Digital rather than high bit rate LPCM as stated on the cover of the package?

Disc 3 is a disc of early versions of the songs on the original album in the order they appear on the original album. Of interest are the original lyrics to `Paranoid' and `Planet Caravan' which appears to have originally been almost 2 minutes longer. The other tracks offer little to the casual listener and are really for fans only.

For the price this is a very good set and deserves the deluxe tag, however there are flaws in the set and while its great to have the original quad mix it would be better to have it sourced for a good tape and as a DVDA.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Genius, 1 April 2005
This review is from: Paranoid (Audio CD)
This record is amazing: if you like rock, you've got to own it. If you don't? WHY NOT!!!??? Hearing the band play live for the first time (the record was not quite ten years old when I was born) in 98 was a revelation for me because I'd heard a lot of modern metal bands... these old guys were heavier! Loads of the best moments were tracks off this record. Since then, I've been even more fanatical. This album is a landmark in music of any kind.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dominant Classic Metal, 5 Nov 2007
By 
Tom Chase (London) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Paranoid (Audio CD)
1970's self-titled debut gave Black Sabbath acclaim, albeit relatively low-key. It showcased a unique and wonderful sound - something far heavier and darker than any other metal band around. Later in that year the band released "Paranoid" to surprising colossal acclaim, propelling the band into both European and US stardom. This rise bewildered leagues of music fans against the band's supposed satanic proclamation, stupidly labelling them Satan worshippers and disregarding the music on offer. "Paranoid" trampled over the naysayers, planting the band into legendary status.

Most of the songs on "Paranoid" have become timeless classics. The title track is the song that everyone who doesn't know Sabbath, or doesn't really know classic metal and rock, knows. Supposedly written as a last ditch thing in the recording studio, the song's overt simplicity and various catchy hooks has become the public face for Sabbath. Ask a group of 40 year old mothers and I bet some, if not most, will know the song, or at least the lead riff. While I don't rank the song as particularly great Black Sabbath, I believe it to be a testament to their ability - their sound is so unique and wonderful, the simplest of Iommi riffs and most slapdash lyrics from Ozzy are elevated, boosted by a sense of raw energy and passion throughout. Obviously Ozzy leads this from the front, booming his voice from the get-go with the fabulous opener "War Pigs/Luke's Wall", one of my favourite Sabbath songs, galloping through sections, swaggering through riffs, solos and police sirens. The song is Black Sabbath at their best.

"Paranoid" is a wonderfully consistent album, flowing from song to song, and boasting no filler. While many of the songs have become anthems, such as the title track, "War Pigs" and the monolithic "Iron Man", the album has plenty to offer as a whole. "Hand of Doom" is up there with the best moments in the album, containing a great galloping sense and trademark Iommi riffing. "Fairies Wear Boots" is another underrated Sabbath song, and another that could have easily hit the mainstream popularity as others.

Many people have loosely thrown the abuse of Satan worshippers at Sabbath, and most particularly Ozzy Osbourne. Yes, he did bite a live bat on stage, but as he has said in countless interviews and retrospect programs - it was a stage mix up, and he was under the impression of it being rubber, as planned. Yes, the album imagery is dark and intense, but this was their image, it was their aesthetic style of branching out and creating an identity, a menacing identity. Lyrically, confusion seems to be in the band's interest in the occult, with the band members, and especially Geezer Butler having experienced bizarre experiences in their earlier lives. The obscure lyrics were easily misinterpreted, and even the less obscure ones, such as the poignant Vietnam War attack in "War Pigs", in which Ozzy paints a gloomy portrayal of humanity, with Satan "laughing" as he watches. Hardly proclaiming Satanism. While thousands of fans have argued as I am, the "evil" stigma became something of a tag, wrongly giving the band a controversial and mysterious label. It is for this that I can concede the criticism proved a double edged sword, as it certainly boosted the bands legendary persona.

"Paranoid" broke into mainstream success, giving the band ultimate stardom, and creating endless influence for the metal genre and many of its offshoots. Fans of classic rock should pick up this album, and discover the wonderful journey of Sabbath's lengthy and stellar discography.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars pioneering hard hitting stuff, 26 July 2006
By 
sean paul mccann "mccanns23" (ireland) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Paranoid (Audio CD)
Sabbaths second album is 36 years old and still sounds so fresh even today,it is widely regarded as the defining heavy metal album brim packed with solid songs,heavy riffs,epic songs and a good doomy ,evil feel to it helped with the odd occult reference.

Their debut was special but this was the album that really launched the band,the classics are certainly to be found here.

Songs like the classic paranoia which granted is on every rock compilation ever and can certainly be deemed as overplayed but its still a great example of heavy music that was catchy,and we all love that these days.War pigs is another classic as is iron man and fairies wear boots,but in truth this is an essential album,an album that wouldnt be beaten and certainly defines the bands style in my opinion,if you own one sabbath album then surely it has to be this.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Masters of all they survey., 3 Nov 2001
This review is from: Paranoid (Audio CD)
Sabbath at their best? Definitely. The Osbourne/Iommi partnership was on top form for for this album, and 30 years on, its STILL an essential metal album. From the classic "War Pigs", through to the infamous "Paranoid", Ozzy and co. demonstated the sheer power of their own special sound - one that remains amazing to this day. Metallica and the others all owe this band an enormous debt.If you don't own this album, BUY IT NOW. If you already own it, put it on and turn it up loud!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good but clipped sound, 24 April 2009
By 
res (Wairarapa, New Zealand) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Paranoid (Audio CD)
I wanted to comment not so much on the over-reverberant, dull sound of the 5.1 DTS, but on the mastering of the two CDs.

The CDs (the original album and rehearsals) do sound good. I was surprised therefore when I transferred them and opened with a wave editor. Both have substantial amounts of clipping (that is, the level is set so high waveform peaks flatten at full scale).

I think the reason they sound better than the "Black Box" is that they have not been compressed by volume maxing software, and most of the clipping is knocking the tops off snare drum beats, where it is hard to detect. Still, I'll stick with the 1996 Castle remasters, free of any form volume maxing efforts.

Regarding the second CD, where the final album makes much use of multi-tracked guitars, the rehearsals on the second CD have only a single guitar. Other than that they are close to the final takes in terms of arrangement and mix.

What struck me most about the alternative lyrics on Planet Caravan was that the singing is free of electronic treatment - just raw, rough sung/spoken words. I think prefer this to the final version.

My conclusion - this package is only for the serious fan, and buy knowing the serious shortcomings highlighted in many of the reviews.

Cheers.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Black Sabbath: Paranoid Re-Mastered Vinyl (2009), 20 April 2010
By 
P. Kelly (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Paranoid [VINYL] (Vinyl)
I remember purchasing the original vinyl back in the early 70s from Bradley's Records in Rochdale. It was the Paranoid single that really put this album on the radar screen and made it so popular. Unfortunately my original copy got completely worn out with excessive playing and mishandling at house parties. For me still today vinyl is the best format to appreciate the Black Sabbath sound with the Hi-Fi volume turned up high. So to get a new Deluxe 2009 release on vinyl was very exciting.

Sanctuary Records have done an excellent job with this particular vinyl release. The cover/packaging is as per the original album but being stronger to hold the two heavy vinyl discs (weight 188/190grams). The recording/pressing quality is in my view the best of all the 2009 re-releases. It is crystal clear, loud, excellent stereo separation including plenty of clean driving bass/percussion. The balance of the sound is excellent with the bass and percussion more pronounced in the mix.

The records are perfectly flat and the icing on the cake is that they have kept the original black and white `Vertigo' swirl label in the centre of the record on one side of both records. It is a pleasure just to watch this go around on the turn-table again, pure magic. One small issue is the cardboard inner sleeves. Why do record companies put vinyl in tight fitting cardboard? Why not use the more practical paper with antistatic vented plastic inserts to make ease of removal as safe as possible? If they want to include notes/pictures then still do so but on a separate cardboard/paper sheet. I am sure the high price of vinyl records can justify less than 1p sending on a paper/antistatic plastic sleeve.

The first disc is the original album in its full glory. It is worth the cost of the album alone just to have this available again. All 8 original tracks in my view are strong, including the quieter track `Plant Caravan' and the instrumental `Rat Salad'. These add variety to the album.

The second contains alternative mixes/vocals and instrumentals. The instrumentals are interesting but not essential. The main issue is that vocals on this album are so good that taking them away on any track means an essential part is missing from the record sound. It is not Black Sabbath without the vocals. On the instrumental version of `War Pigs' you can hear the vocals faintly in the background, which is disappointing. The alternative vocal version of Paranoid does not work for me and it is clear why it was not selected over the original version.

In conclusion a brilliant release of one of rock's classic albums that is a master piece on the vinyl format. Fully recommended. Put it on the turn-table, turn up the volume and watch the Vertigo swirl around to your heart's content.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 212 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Paranoid
Paranoid by Black Sabbath (Audio CD - 2004)
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews