Black Sabbath Members To Make Special Appearance At Grammy Museum

Courtesy:  Universal Republic Records

Courtesy: Universal Republic Records

Black Sabbath founding members Ozzy Osbourne and Geezer Butler are set to make a special appearance at the Los Angeles’ Grammy Museum next month.  The special appearance is part of a promotional tour supporting the release of the band’s new live DVD, Black Sabbath Live…Gathered In Their Masses

Ozzy and Geezer will take part in a Q&A session and special early screening of the band’s new live DVD during its appearance.  The whole thing will be held at the museum’s Clive Davis Theater.  During the Q&A session, Ozzy and Geezer will share with fans their thoughts on the band’s reunion, a #1 album in 13 and the band’s hugely successful world tour among other topics.  More information on the event is available online at http://www.grammymuseum.org.

Black Sabbath Live…Gathered In Their Masses will be available on Tuesday, November 25th.  It will be available on DVD, Blu-ray, combo pack, and deluxe box set.  The concert presented in the upcoming release was recorded April 29th and May 1st in Melbourne, Australia as the band kicked off its world tour in support of 13.  The band is currently on the road, touring across South America and Mexico.  Once that leg is done, the band will head overseas to tour Europe in November and December.  A full listing of the band’s current tour dates and more is available online at http://www.blacksabbath.com, http://www.facebook.com/BlackSabbath, and http://twitter.com/OfficialSabbath.    To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Black Sabbath Announces Title, Release Date For New Live DVD

Courtesy:  Vertigo/Republic Records

Courtesy: Vertigo/Republic Records

Black Sabbath has officially announced that it will release a brand new live DVD this Fall.  The band, which just finished off the American leg of its worldwide tour, will release its new live DVD, titled Black Sabbath: LiveGathered in their Masses on November 26th,.  It will be released via Vertigo/Republic Records.  The performance contained on the new live DVD was recorded between April 29th and May 1st, 2013 in Melbourne, Australia.

Having wrapped up the American leg of its tour, Black Sabbath is set to make its way to South American next.  The South American and Mexican leg of the band’s tour kicks off Friday, October 4th in Santiago, Chile.  After wrapping its South American and Mexican tour, the band is expected to make its way across Europe through November and December.  A full listing of the band’s upcoming tour dates is available online at http://www.facebook.com/BlackSabbath, http://www.blacksabbath.com, and http://twitter.comOfficialSabbath.

The band’s new release, 13, debuted at #1 in thirteen countries.  That includes the United States.  The album’s #1 debut marks the very first #1 in the U.S.

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Indie Rapper 13’s Self-Titled Debut Shows He’s As Good As Any Mainstream Rapper

Courtesy:  Goomba Music

Courtesy: Goomba Music

The self-titled debut from Puerto Rican born rapper William Morgan (A.K.A. 13) is the album that fellow rapper Eminem’s fans have wanted ever since the release of his 2004 album, Encore.  The follow-ups in Relapse and Recovery haven’t been met with quite the vigor from fans as his earlier works.  Enter 13, with his brand new self-titled release.  The eleven-song album from the once homeless military veteran is easily compared to music from the likes of Eminem.    If audiences were to hear this record without knowing it was the New York native, they would believe that it was in fact Eminem.  13’s self-titled debut sounds just like Eminem’s music both stylistically and lyrically.  Even 13 himself sounds quite like Mr. Mathers in terms of his voice and rhyming style.  The similarities between the two are inescapable, right from the moment that the album opens. 

The album’s opener, ‘Hi/Hello’ is quite the first introduction of 13 to his audiences.  And it is crafted much as Eminem has done on past records.  Until the moment that he introduces himself officially, letting people know who he is, audiences are led to believe that they are listening to Eminem.  It is said though, that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  Eminem would in fact be flattered by the fact that this artist sounds so much like him all the way around.  Thirteen doesn’t let up once throughout the course of the album’s eleven songs.  From one song to the next, each one is hard-hitting in its own way.  One of the hardest hitting of the album’s tracks is the song, ‘Houston We Have a Problem.”  Richy Nix guests on the track.  The song opens with the ominous strains of a piano.  The piano part stays on as 13 raps about his tough upbringing and of his adult life.  The picture he paints is one of a man that has so much turmoil in his life going all the way back to his childhood growing up around drugs and babies born to moms on drugs.  It’s a tough picture to see.  But it is definitely impactful in hearing this.

Just as powerful as ‘Houston We Have a Problem (ft. Richy Nix)’ is the album’s midway point, ‘Alter Ego.’  He writes about finding God despite everything that he has been through in life, and how he wishes he had that American dream of having a child and a wife.  He writes, “Hey what up/My life was never easy/Raised up in the ghetto/You would never wanna be me/I’m a product of an adult something crazy/See me rise up to the top/Then I promise/Best believe me/something I never know/Is why society is so cold….I had to slowly realize/That my pain is why I rise/Once I reach up to the top/Then I push the pain aside/What a life, what a life/Oh man, what a life/All I really want/A couple kids and a wife/That’s alright/It’s a battle/It’s a fight/Imma fight with all my might…forever hold on tight.”  As ominous as the song sounds, musically, it’s really quite the uplifting and inspiring piece that many people will understand and appreciate in their own way.  And it’s just one more part of what makes this album one that any hardcore rap fan will appreciate in whole.

Audiences will appreciate 13’s songs both for their music and for their hard-hitting lyrics.  There is not one bad song throughout the course of the album.  The music isn’t all that audiences will appreciate from this record.  The album’s production values are what make the music sound so good.  The mix of the piano parts, the occasional guitars and the beats is a very good touch.  No one part overpowers the other at any point throughout the album.  The same can be said of the vocals.  They are just as well balanced with the album’s other elements.  They all work together to make this an album that any purist rap fan will enjoy.  It serves to prove that just as with the world of rock music, indie rappers can be just as good as the big names.  13’s new self-titled debut is available now.  It can be downloaded via iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/thirteen/id667109934.  And fans can keep up with the latest from 13 online at http://www.facebook.com/13isgodsend and http://newyork13.com

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Black Sabbath Reveals Dates For Full North American Tour Schedule

Courtesy:  Universal Republic Records

Courtesy: Universal Republic Records

The hatchet has largely been buried between the members of veteran hard rock band Black Sabbath.  After over three decades of waiting, fans of this groundbreaking band will finally get to hear new music from the band this Summer.  And in support of the new album, titled 13, Black Sabbath—Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, and Geezer Butler—will hit the road in support of the album with a full North American tour.  Drummer Bill Ward will be replaced on the band’s upcoming tour with a replacement drummer.  Tickets for the band’s upcoming tour will be available Friday, May 3rd.  Fans can get early access to the pre-sale tickets on May 2nd when they RSVP at https://www.facebook.com/events/147056262140133/?context=create or at http://bit.ly/Sabbath_RSVP.

The band’s upcoming North American tour begins Thursday, July 25th at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion in Houston, TX.  It spans nineteen dates that will take the band from the East Coast to the West and even into Canada.  The full list of tour dates is available below.

DATE                    CITY                     VENUE

+Thu- Jul 25          Houston, TX          Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion

+Sat-Jul 27           Austin, TX             Frank Erwin Center

<Mon-Jul 29          Tampa, FL             Live Nation Amphitheatre

+Wed-Jul 31          W. Palm Beach, FL Cruzan Amphitheatre

~Fri-Aug 02          Bristow, VA           Jiffy Lube Live

*Sun-Aug 04        Holmdel, NJ           PNC Bank Arts Center

+Tue-Aug 06        Detroit, MI            DTE Energy Music Theatre

+Thu-Aug 08        Uncasville, CT        Mohegan Sun Arena

+Sat-Aug 10         Philadelphia, PA     Wells Fargo Center

^Mon-Aug 12        Boston, MA           Comcast Center

*Wed-Aug 14        Toronto, ON          Air Canada Centre

+Fri Aug 16           Tinley Park, IL       First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre

+Sun-Aug 18        Indianapolis, IN       Klipsch Music Center

+Thu-Aug 22        Vancouver, BC       Rogers Arena

*Sat-Aug 24        Seattle, WA           Gorge Amphitheatre

+Mon-Aug 26        San Francisco, CA  Shoreline Amphitheatre at Mountain View

+Wed-Aug 28       Irvine, CA              Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre

+Fri-Aug 30          Phoenix, AZ           US Airways Center

+Sun-Sep 01        Las Vegas, NV       MGM Grand Garden Arena

*Tue-Sep 03        Los Angeles, CA     Los Angeles Sports Arena

 

*Previously announced date.

^On sale Friday, May 3

+On sale Saturday, May 4

~On sale, Friday May 10

<On sale, Saturday, May 11

>On sale TBD

Before the band hits the road and the album hits stores, fans can get a glimpse of what is to come now.  The band has released 13’s lead single, ‘God is Dead?’, and fans can check it out now on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wVfUimq2KeI.

To get more tour information and all of the latest news from Black Sabbath, fans can go online to the band’s official website, http://www.blacksabbath.com, its official Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/BlackSabbath, and via Twitter and Instagram at http://twitter.com/OfficialSabbath and http://instagram.com/officialsabbath.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Black Sabbath Announces First New Slate Of Tour Dates

Courtesy:  Universal Republic Records

Courtesy: Universal Republic Records

Black Sabbath has announced the first handful of dates for its upcoming tour in support of its much anticipated new album, 13.  Four shows have been announced.  All four are American dates.  The current slate of dates is available below. 

DATE                  CITY                 VENUE
Sun, 8-4             Holmdel, NJ           PNC Bank Arts Center
Wed, 8-14         Toronto, ON           Air Canada Centre
Sat, 8-24           Seattle, WA           Gorge Amphitheatre
Tue, 9-3            Los Angeles, CA    Los Angeles Sports Arena

 

Tickets for these tour dates go on sale beginning this Saturday, April 20th.  Fans can actually RSVP for early access to early tickets by going online to http://bit.ly/Sabbath_RSVP.  Those early tickets will be available this Thursday, April 18th.

Along with the early tickets being available this Thursday, Black Sabbath will release the first single from 13, ‘God is Dead?’  The song will debut across Clear Channel Media and Entertainment’s forty-plus Active Rock and Mainstream Rock radio stations nationwide.  It will debut this Thursday at 3pm/12pm PT. 

For all of the latest updates on the band’s tour, its upcoming album, singles and more, fans can follow the band online at http://www.blacksabbath.com, http://www.facebook.com/BlackSabbath, http://twitter.com/OfficialSabbath, and http://instagram.com/officialsabbath

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Black Sabbath Releases Cover Art, Track Listing For Long Awaited Album

Courtesy:  Universal Republic Records

Courtesy: Universal Republic Records

It’s been over three decades since the members of Black Sabbath released any new material.  This Summer, one of rock’s greatest bands at long last returns.  The band will release its first album in thirty-five years in 13.  And now, fans of this legendary band are getting their first hint of the album.  The band has released the upcoming album’s artwork and track listing.  The album consists of eight tracks.  The shortest of those songs clocks in at just over four minutes long.  The album’s longest track clocks in at nearly nine minutes. 13 will be available June 11th.  Rage Against The Machine Drummer Brad Wilk joined the band to record the album in place of former drummer Bill Ward.  Renowned producer Rick Rubin manned the boards for this album.

The track listing is as follows:

1.  End of the Beginning (8:07)

2.  God is Dead? (8:54)

3.  Loner (5:06)

4.  Zeitgeist (4:28)

5.  Age of Reason (7:02)

6.  Live Forever (4:49)

7.  Damaged Sou (7:43)

8.  Dear Father (7:06)

The band will tour in support of 13 beginning next Saturday, April 20th.  The current tour dates take the band across Europe.  A full list of tour dates is available on the band’s official Facebook page, http://www.Facebook.com/BlackSabbath.  Fans can pre-order the upcoming album—which will be available on CD, vinyl, Deluxe 2-CD Set, and Super Deluxe box set—through the band’s official website, http://www.blacksabbath.com.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

“13” is a lucky number for Megadeth

Thirteen is typically considered to be an unlucky number among those masses who are superstitious.  But for metal stalwarts, Megadeth, it’s a very lucky number.  That’s because the band’s aptly titled new album, “13” earned the band a grammy nomination alongside fellow Roadrunner Records labelmates, Dream Theater.  On a side note, it’s a surprise that fellow labelmates, Machine Head, didn’t get a nod, as their new album, “Unto The Locusts” is an amazing new metal record, too.  But I digress.  The nomination was for Best Hard Rock/ Metal Performance, for the album’s lead single, ‘Public Enemy No. 1’. And while that single earned the band a Grammy nod, it’s hardly the only shining moment to what is one of the best metal albums of 2011.

“13” is one of those albums that picks audiences up by their collar, and puts a boot to their backsides from start to finish, all the while leaving just enough time to breath between tracks.  It’s a nonstop, full throttle, adrenaline rush straight through.  It takes a lot of the classic metal riffs from the likes of Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, and Motorhead, and thread them together for an album that simply won’t grow old, no matter how many listens it gets.  There’s even a touch of classic Metallica (go figure) in ‘Millenium of The Blind’  Considering that the band brought fellow metal vets, Motorhead onto the Gigantour in 2011, the similarities to Motorhead were be that much more evident.  That’s not such a bad thing, either.  Considering the state of mainstream rock, Megadeth’s new release is exactly what purist metal fans want and need.

The softest that Megadeth gets on “13” is the album’s closer, which also happens to be its title track.  The catch is taht just when audiences think they’re getting a chance to catch their breath, the song kicks things up just enough to keep audiences’ adrenaline going for one last song.  It could almost be considered the studio version of an encore.  Again, this is not a bad thing.  It ends just as softly as it began, ultimately leaving audiences with what is hopefully a sense of fullfilment from what is not only one of the best metal albums of the year, but one of the best albums of the year, despite what Grammy voters may believe.