A little over a year ago, Black Sabbath announced that they had disbanded. But that doesn't mean that there isn't more to look back at in the legendary career of the pioneering metal band. Rhino has just announced Supersonic Years: The Seventies Singles Box Set, a limited-edition collection of ten 7-inch vinyl singles, due June 8.
Despite the massive success of their albums, Black Sabbath never had that much success in the singles market, aside from their breakout "Paranoid" from 1970, which hit No. 4 in the U.K. and No. 1 in Germany. In fact, the band members themselves did not think that their music lent itself to the format. That same year, they told the Record Mirror that they were banning any more single releases. This ban actually lasted nearly two years before singles resumed being issued. But their 45s just never matched the success of their LPs. While their albums were notching placements near the top of the charts and selling numerous copies, the next highest chart position for a song after "Paranoid" was 1978's "Never Say Die" off the album of the same name which hit #No. 1 in the U.K. But that, of course, doesn't mean that there isn't anything to be enjoyed from the singles, certainly.
Rhino's new box set include versions of the five singles that Warner Bros. issued for the group in the U.S. during the 1970s. (Warner Bros. controlled the rights for the band in the U.S., but Sabbath was distributed by other labels around the world.) The remaining five 45s were only issued in various other countries. (Please note that this set does not contain all of the singles issued by the group worldwide during the decade). All ten singles in the box are housed in color picture sleeves from around the world, either rare or exclusive to this set. Five of the songs are presented in their rare single edits: "Iron Man," "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath," "Am I Going Insane (Radio)," "Hard Road" and "Symptom of the Universe." A new booklet is included detailing the singles and exploring the birth of heavy metal. The box set has been remastered by Andy Pearce.
The singles included are:
- "Evil Woman (Don't Play Your Games With Me)" b/w "Wicked World" - 1970
- "Paranoid" b/w "The Wizard" - 1970
- "Iron Man" (Single Edit) b/w "Electric Funeral" - 1970
- "Tomorrow Dream" b/w "Laguna Sunrise" - 1972
- "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" (Edited Version) b/w "Changes" - 1973
- "Am I Going Insane (Radio" (Single Edit) b/w "Hole in the Sky" - 1975
- "Gypsy" b/w "She's Gone" - 1976
- "It's Alright" b/w "Rock 'N' Roll Doctor" - 1976
- "Never Say Die" b/w "She's Gone" - 1978
- "Hard Road" (Single Edit) b/w "Symptom of the Universe" (German Single Edit) - 1978
If you'd like to explore the classic era of Black Sabbath, we've got the preorder links for Supersonic Years: The Seventies Singles Box Set below, due June 8!
Black Sabbath, Supersonic Years: The Seventies Singles Box Set (Warner Bros./Rhino, 2018)