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Symptom of the Universe: The Original Black Sabbath 1970-1978 Original recording remastered

4.6 out of 5 stars 79 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Original recording remastered, October 22, 2002
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

2 CDs presenting 29 tracks from the band's earliest days and most popular era with Ozzy Osbourne as co-founder and frontman. Includes the rare "Evil Woman" non-LP single, available on CD for the first time in the U.S., previously released on the U.K. version of Black Sabbath. All full-length album cuts, digitally remastered from the original tapes. Booklet includes liner notes by Black Sabbath historian Mick Wall. Packaging: 2 individual digi-packs with a separate booklet, all in a slipcase with special embossed artwork. Executive-p-roduced by Sharon Osbourne.

Completely besting the once-classic and classically named best-of, We Sold Our Souls for Rock 'n' Roll, Symptom of the Universe captures one of rock's heaviest tidal forces in all their glory--and in some more compromising moments. Ranging from the eponymous dirge that opens the set to the boogie-laden energy of more minor Sabbath gems like "Evil Woman" and "After Forever," this two-disc overview doesn't skimp on stone-cold gems like "Paranoid," "War Pigs," "Iron Man," and "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath." The second CD serves up the solo acoustic "Snowblind," a piano-and-Ozzy interlude, "Laguna Sunrise" (from the album Black Sabbath, Vol. 4), and the silly, aptly named "Fluff." Here the quartet reaches beyond their grasp, eschewing the grinding, hefty sound that fit Ozzy's flat vocal delivery like a glove; this stuff isn't great, but it's revealing. Decades after their debut, Sabbath's dystrophic rejoinder to '60s and '70s rock still energize nearly all hard rock. So this is rock history, and a blast at that. --Andrew Bartlett

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Black Sabbath
  2. N.I.B.
  3. The Wizard
  4. Warning
  5. Evil Woman
  6. Paranoid
  7. Iron Man
  8. War Pigs
  9. Fairies Wear Boots
  10. Sweet Leaf
  11. Children Of The Grave
  12. Into The Void
  13. Lord Of This World

Disc: 2

  1. After Forever
  2. Snowblind
  3. Laguna Sunrise
  4. Changes
  5. Tomorrow's Dream
  6. Supernaut
  7. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
  8. Fluff
  9. Sabbra Cadabra
  10. Am I Going Insane (Radio)
  11. Symptom Of The Universe
  12. Hole In The Sky
  13. Rock 'N' Roll Doctor
  14. Dirty Women
  15. Never Say Die
  16. A Hard Road

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 22, 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Original recording remastered
  • Label: Warner Bros/Rhino
  • ASIN: B00006LHW1
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #115,421 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Joseph Siegler TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 1, 2002
Format: Audio CD
A week or so ago, the new 2 CD "The Original Black Sabbath 1970-1978: Symptom of the Universe" package was released. When I first heard about it, my thought was "Big deal - yet another packaging of the same old Iron Man / Paranoid / War Pigs collection - who needs that?" BOY WAS I WRONG.
Normally I don't like packages like this, because it strikes me as an attempt to get folks to just buy the same songs again. However, this time it's most definitely worth it. This isn't just a standard repackage. This set does have the songs that we know well, but these are a new remastering of the songs. This has nothing to do with the 1996 Castle Communications remaster of the albums from 1970-1987. These are NEW remasters taken from the original Warner Bros Master tapes (indeed, this bears the Warner Bros logo as well as the Rhino one). In fact, I was informed this week that the 96 Castle remasters were not "authorized" by the band - it was one of those record label things. It's not like they're illegal or something, but not a "band sponsored" item.
Anyway, the fidelity on these is quite quite spectacular. I've been listening to Sabbath since 1981, so I'm familiar with the songs, and I have to say, I've heard some bits on here that I've never heard before. They're quite astonishing. I'm not normally one to recommend a package such as this, but I can wholeheartedly recommend this package - even if you own the Castle remasters. Also, while I've not been given any formal information stating as such, one can speculate that since the songs have been remastered again from the Warner masters, you have to wonder if a reissue of the albums themselves are on the books? I don't have any info that says they will, but if so, I'll be sure to pass it on.
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Format: Audio CD
It is only natural with the newfound interest in Ozzy Osbourne due to his popular reality based television show that Rhino decided to release this newly remastered 2 cd Black Sabbath anthology of Ozzy's work (1970-78) in time for Halloween. "Symptom Of The Universe" betters the long time domestic retrospective "We Sold Our Soul For Rock And Roll" by 15 additional tracks. All 14 tracks on that release appear on "Symptom Of The Universe" in remastered form. The only rarity is the song "Evil Woman" a non-lp single issued during the time period of their first album but it has been available on various import anthologies for years.
Black Sabbath was one of the original bands who started the genre of heavy metal. Their music was slow and grungy with sledgehammer riffs. Ozzy became somewhat of a folk hero due to his legendary unpredictable on and offstage antics. His charisma provided a focal point for the band even if guitarist Tony Iommi was the real leader and bassist Geezer Butler provided the majority of the lyrics. Radio favorites like "Paranoid", "Iron Man" and "Children Of The Grave" remain in Ozzy's solo set lists to this day. The best part of the set is rediscovering the lost favorites of old like "The Wizard", "Fairies Wear Boots", "Sweet Leaf", "Supernaut", "Sabbra Cadabra" and "Hole In The Sky". The band were never flashy in the current sense but their bludgeoning style won them many fans. While never critical darlings, they have proven to be highly influential. They were one the first bands to capitalize on a demonic/occult image. This image influenced many later bands such as Venom, Slayer, Mercyful Fate and a host of other foreign Black Metal bands. This is evident in songs like "Black Sabbath", "N.I.B.", "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" to name a few.
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By Jigen on November 11, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Me being born in 1986, I missed out on alot of the music that came out back in the early days. I was never a big Ozzy fan, until I heard "Bark at the Moon" on a videogame soundtrack...I thought I'd check out some of his CD's then I came across Black Sabbath. I heard of the band as being Ozzys first real band, so I figured I'd check it out and I thought the best way to do that would be to buy this package right here. When I listened all the way through I had noticed some songs that I heard before and not only was I blown away by them, but by the whole CD.
The one's I had heard before(but only once or twice, and never really liked them since I was really young when I heard them) was "War Pigs", "Paranoid", "Iron Man", "N.I.B.", and "Sabbra Caddabra".(that was on the album "Garage Inc. by Metallica) These songs were amazing, and blew me away right off the bat...then when I got around to the rest of the CD I was so happy that I spent the [money] on this gem. "Snowblind", "Changes", "Supernaut", "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath", "Symptom of the Universe", "Black Sabbath", "The Wizard", and "Children of the Grave" are just a few of the many great songs...they rank up there as some of the best songs I've ever heard.
Another thing to mention is the packaging, and the booklet that comes with it. This isn't your normal cheap CD Jewel Case...a nice cardboard outside, with pictures of the band, and a flip top on both cases. The booklet kept me interested as well, I sat there for a good thirty minutes or so reading through the whole thing; it has some very good information in it.
If your a rock fan interested in what started(or was there in the beginning) the genre, then go with this collection, you will not be dissapointed!
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