Eternal Void Of Doom (No Label)
Falkoner Theatre Copenhagen, Denmark April 18, 1971
(49:29) N.I.B., War Pigs, Black Sabbath, Iron Man, Into The Void, Paranoid, Fairies Wear Boots
Black Sabbath played a pretty standard list of songs during the early 70’s but, like Led Zeppelin, every once in a while a concert recording surfaces with something different. Perhaps only played a few times live but never made the heavy rotation, Sabbath fans look to the Dayton 72, Australia 73, Pittsburgh 74, Alexandria Palace 73 as very sought after shows.
During 1971 Sabbath released Master Of Reality, it was a huge success commercial as well as musically featuring such classics as Sweet Leaf and Children Of The Grave and both of which became standards on tour. One that did not and arguably the heaviest song on the record is Into The Void, there are a couple of live versions circulating in trade circles, this is probably the best in regards to sound quality.
The recording featured here is a mono audience source that is very good, well balanced and sounds great at loud volumes, it surfaced on a Internet torrent site and soon became this release. The source was taken direct from the reel to reel master and features a very good Sabbath concert, the band is focused and play tight and professional show.
The concert begins with a wail of feedback followed by a flurry of notes from Tony Iommi and the band launches into N.I.B., a concert favorite. Ozzy in fine voice tonight, his vocals a perfect in the mix as well as Bill Ward. His playing during the early 70’s was astounding, the fills are perfect and add much to the wall of sound that is Sabbath. The audience is very quiet and respectful saving their energy for listening, the clap at the songs conclusion as Ozzy introduces a song from the Paranoid album. War Pigs is ultra heavy, the crowd remains quiet and its interesting to hear just a few punters clapping as the vocal section is played. again Bill Wards drumming must be commended, the older drummers in rock had such a feel for timing, knowing when to play a lot and when not to adding the vibe of the piece. Tonight’s version is very aggressive and less pondering as later versions would become.
Black Sabbath is introduced with little fan fare, Tony plays a instrumental piece before the heavy riff flows over the audience, the audience is completely silent as Ozzy starts the vocals, slow but methodical equal drama at its finest.The crowd loosens up as at the beginning of Iron Man, clapping in time to the intro and few couple of verses. The song itself is a perfect rendition, nothing is lost and is ultra heavy, right before the fast ending Ozzy sings “Iron Main lives again” he stretches out the again very nicely, his vocals on this night are top notch.
Ozzy introduces the next song as being from their new LP and to very little fanfare as it is still three months away from release. The lyrics are different, the first couple lines are the same but differs from there, the music is the same and is simply very, very heavy. One of Tony’s heaviest riff, it is double when Geezer and Bill kick in but the guitarist is the star of the song. His solo is fantastic and he has no problem going from riff to solo and back, a fantastic version of the song.
They finish with a standard take on Paranoid, again the audience is quiet and respectful. The song is a fast and faithful version similar to the record. They come back with an encore consisting of my favorite track from Paranoid, a killer version of Fairies Wear Boot. The lyrics are based upon a run in with skin heads where Ozzy got the worse end of the stick. It is a raucous version, the band really hammering it down as the last song, Bill is beating the hell out of his drums in fantastic fashion, a great end to a great concert.
The packaging is simple but effective shots of a young and fit looking band on top of their game, the inserts are packaged in a single jewel case. Although widely circulated thanks to various download sites the concert is fantastic and great to have a silver release, simply put a must have.
A great review above largely capturing also my opinion about this release. This is one of the recordings that is far from technially perfect, but instead has managed to capture BOTH a terrific performance in more than (way more!) listenable quality (also for less than fanatic listeners) with good atmosphere. On top of that the setlist is somewhat unusual with the inclusion of Into the Void – a lovely little bonus.
Somehow, the older I get the more I have come to appreciate good audience recordings. The feeling of litening to what the audience at the venue actually heard is so seductive.
Whoever are behind this label, they are doing a great job compiling terrific audience recordings such as this but also fabulous soundboards like the Montreux release. I honestly can’t wait to see what else they are coming up with. In the mean time I will sit back and enjoy this tape – or, dig out my SG and riff away with this lovely recording!
As you say, a must-have, and money well spent.