Episode #108 – Black Sabbath – Seventh Star (with Ry from Sabbath Bloody Podcast)

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Lead up to the Album:

  • Ian Gillan was out to rejoin Deep Purple.
  • Bill Ward had worked hard and gotten himself out of the depression he had been in.
  • The thought after Gillan left was to get a virtual unknown on vocals.  One name thrown about was Ron Keel of the band Steeler.
  • David Donato was also given a shot but only got as far as recording a few demos.
  • Jeff Fenholt was also considered.
  • Bill decided after getting sober that he needed to leave for good.
  • Eric Singer was recruited to take his place as drummer.
  • Geezer, who admitted to boozing pretty hard during the Born Again tour was also out.
  • So now Tony realized that this group of musicians assembling was not really Black Sabbath at this point.
  • Dave Spitz, who had worked with producer Glixman in the past joined the band as bass player.
  • Iommi says the original idea was to use ten different singers but he “ended up using Glenn on all of them.”
  • Iommi says he and Glenn were both going through pretty major drug problems at the time.
  • Glenn and Geoff Nichols didn’t get song writing credits for the most part.  Glenn was because of contractual reasons.  
  • Glenn says Dio and Halford were also considered when Iommi was considering multiple singers for the album.  David Coverdale and Robert Plant were also considered.
  • Glenn says Glixman was also undergoing a huge drug problem and that he and Glixman didn’t get along.
  • Glenn claims to writing a bulk of the lyrics with some help from Nichols and Glixman.



  • Recorded at Cherokee in L.A. and Cheshire Sound in Atlanta.
  • Management [Worldwide Representation By] – Don Arden
  • Producer, Engineer – Jeff Glixman
    • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeff_Glixman
    • Engineered and performed keyboards on Blackmore’s Night’s second album “Under a Violet Moon.”
    • Produced 4 out of the 9 tracks on Paul Stanley’s Kiss solo album “Paul Stanley.”
    • Worked with Kansas, Gary Moore, and Saxon.
  • Mastered By – Greg Fulginiti

Album Art & Booklet Review

Lucas Cranach the Elder (German, Kronach 1472–1553 Weimar) The Temptation of St. Anthony, 1506 German, Woodcut; second state of two (Hollstein); sheet: 16 1/16 x 11 in. (40.8 x 28 cm) The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Junius S. Morgan, 1919 (19.52.17) http://www.metmuseum.org/Collections/search-the-collections/404502

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Album Tracks:

All music and lyrics by Tony Iommi with additional lyrics by Geoff Nichols, Glenn Hughes, and Jeff Glixman.

Side One:

  1. In for the Kill
    • 7/4 time signature.
    • Lyrics are about Vlad the Impaler and Armageddon.
    • Glenn said this wasn’t one of his favorites.  Called it “demon and drug stuff.”
    • Could be he’s comparing the battle with drugs to a battle with demons.
  2. No Stranger to Love
    • Gordon Copley plays bass on this track.
    • This song was issued as a single.
    • They shot a video for the song and that’s where the shot of Tony on the cover of the album comes from.
    • The video has Bing Crosby’s niece, Denise, in it.
  3. Turn to Stone
  4. Sphinx (The Guardian)
    • Lyrics from Nicholls.
  5. Seventh Star
    • This song was most inspired by the Egyptian Saint Anthony (251-356), who developed Christian monasticism, leading the ascetic life of a hermit in the desert, in an endeavor to rid himself of the temptation to sin and attain spiritual peace and oneness with God.
      1. Written by https://genius.com/CRJ2

Side Two:

  1. Danger Zone
    • Song possibly about drug additction.
  2. Heart Like a Wheel
    • Another Georff Nicholls lyric.
  3. Angry Heart
    • Geoff Nicholls wrote lyrics for this song about the death of his mother.
    • Glixman wrote lyrics about the death of his dog in place of Nicholls’s lyrics.
    • Tony Iommi opted to go with Nicholls’s lyrics instead.
  4. In Memory
    • Written about Tony’s father who had just passed away.

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  • Hughes tells a lot of contradicting stories about himself writing more of the lyrics than Nicholls claims.  He also admits to being in very poor health and very foggy so there’s probably a lot of inaccuracies.  He also admits to only really remembering showing up in the studio and singing the parts.
  • The ensuing tour only lasted five shows.
  • Hughes got into a fight with John Downing, Black Sabbath production manager, that dislodged Hughes’s eye socket sending it into his sinuses, bruising his face, and damaging his throat.
  • Hughes says “Somebody asked me, ‘Is there anything in your life you would like to erase?”  He said that he would erase those five concerts.
  • Hughes says he was having issues with his voice and the injuries from the fight made it worse and he felt horrible going on stage singing in front of more than 10,000 fans knowing he couldn’t sing and he couldn’t cancel the show.  He says he was very grateful to Ray Gillen for stepping in and saving him the embarrassment.
  • Hughes says he also didn’t like singing the old Sabbath stuff because he doesn’t believe int he devil and he doesn’t like singing about the devil.
  • Hughes also says that he believes that Black Sabbath belongs to Ozzy Osbourne and it doesn’t sound right when other singers sing his songs.

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