This week saw the re-release of deluxe packaged versions of several Black Sabbath albums.
Live Evil is Black Sabbath’s first sanctioned live record. Originally released in the UK back in 1983 all of the tracks on the album were recorded at concerts held in Dallas, San Antonio and Seattle on the Mob Rules Tour which ran between November 81′ and August 82′.
The album captures evenly both Ronnie James Dio and Ozzy Osbournes years with Black Sabbath giving Dio the chance to tackle and master some of the tracks that made this band a success before his induction. The record contains substantial live offerings from the studio albums Mob Rules and Heaven and Hell.
The live versions on this album are very impressive – almost album quality. Vocalist Ronnie James Dio’s voice provide sustainable and energetic live showmanship and displays true testament to the live performances of Black Sabbath.
Some notables from the record include the furious Neon Knights and Children of the Sea – both from the Heaven and Hell album. Both tracks sound mammoth live and are as good as the studio versions.
Heaven and Hell is given particular attention with the addition of a 7-minute guitar solo. After the first 2 minutes however the track begins to feel slightly stale and repetitive in its live form. The track continues to the follower The Sign of the Southern Cross with another dose of Heaven and Hell to close the 20 minute medley.
Drummer Vinny Appice also gets to show his talents off with an amazing drum solo in the extended live version of Osbourne-era War Pigs.
Voodoo features some additional lyrics added by Dio, not previously heard on the Mob Rules studio recording.
The rest is fairly familiar – nothing really more than Black Sabbaths hits in their original form given the treatment you would expect from a live experience.
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