Home Read Classic Album Review: Black Sabbath | Past Lives

Classic Album Review: Black Sabbath | Past Lives

This live compilation from the heavy metal pioneers has something for everybody.

This came out in 2002 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Amid all the Ozzy Osbourne trinkets, tchotchkes and TV tie-ins on the market these days — the lunchboxes and keychains, the dolls and fridge magnets — here’s one that’s worth the bucks.

Past Lives is a two-CD set of ’70s concert recordings from Ozzy and his old Satanic pals in Black Sabbath. Mostly it’s a remastered reissue of an old bootleg called Live At Last, padded out with various bits and pieces from over the years. Even so, Past Lives has something for everybody. For old Sabbath fans, it has a slate of classic tracks: Sweet Leaf, Snowblind, War Pigs, Children Of The Grave, Paranoid, Iron Man, N.I.B., Fairies Wear Boots, Megalomania, Symptom Of The Universe and plenty more, all swimming in a sea of metal doom-sludge. For the collectors, the limited-edition digipack comes with a double-gatefold cover, a booklet, poster and even a Black Sabbath guitar pick. And for fans of TV’s The Osbournes, Ozzy’s stage banter (“Are you high? So am I!”) proves that he was a comedian long before the cameras were rolling. F#@%ing A.