Black Sabbath won't have a new album to accompany its “The End” farewell tour, but it will have some fresh material for fans at the merch stands.
The group is releasing The End, an eight-track CD that will be sold only at shows on the tour; it includes four outtakes from 2013's Grammy Award-winning 13 album -- "Season of the Dead," "Cry All Night," "Take Me Home" and "Isolated Man" -- along with live versions of the 13 tracks "God Is Dead?," "Age of Reason" and "End of the Beginning" and the "Vol. 4" deep cut "Under The Sun."
Bassist Geezer Butler tells us that the CD contains the last bit of material he, frontman Ozzy Osbourne and guitarist Tony Iommi have created together in the studio:
"We went into the studio with, I think, 13 songs, which is why the album is called '13.' We thought we'd put out an album of 13 songs, but then when we were in the studio we wrote another three songs, brought it up to 16 songs, and then we left it up to (producer) Rick Rubin to pick which songs would go on the album, and to give it some light and shade he picked the eight songs that went on the '13' album...We did a few songs on deluxe versions of the album and then we had the four left over and that's what we decided to do as a gig-only CD."
“The End” tour gets underway January 20 in Omaha, Neb., and currently has dates booked into early September.
Gary Graff is an award-winning music journalist who not only covers music but has written books on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.