Back when heavy metal forefathers Black Sabbath recorded and released their 2013 album 13, much hubbub was made about the exclusion of founding Sabbath drummer Bill Ward. Ward himself came forward saying he felt unfairly snubbed, which led to a spat between him and band manager Sharon Osbourne, who claimed Bill simply wasn’t up to the task. Now, Ward has announced that Sabbath should record one final album — with the whole original band.
“As far as I’m concerned, the book’s never closed with Sabbath!” Ward told the UK paper Metro. “I’m writing like a demon, I’m living life.
“I’m in contact with the guys,” Ward also said. “I talked to Ozzy two nights ago. A lot of things have crossed between us, and there’s new boundaries that I’ve had to build, but I don’t think any less of them. I’ve been working with Tony [Iommi, guitars] since 1964 when I was 16 years old. They’re my brothers and I love them.
“My biggest contention has been ‘let’s make another album,'” he continues. “Nothing live necessarily, because I’m looking at what I can realistically do. The way I play the drums, it’s becoming tougher as I get older. I haven’t spoken to the guys about it, but I have talked to a couple of people in management about the possibility of making a recording. Which I can do safely, even with COVID around. I can lay track at my studio in Los Angeles. I’m very open-minded about doing something like that.”
Whether or not this final Sabbath album will happen is questionable. The band toured the world extensively in the mid-2010s on their ‘The End’ tour, which signaled their final live shows. Meanwhile, in early 2020, Ozzy Osbourne canceled all of his touring plans to head overseas for medical treatment after revealing to the world that he’s suffering from Parkinson’s disease. Not only that, but the Prince of Darkness is apparently midway through writing the follow-up to 2020’s massive Ordinary Man.
“We’re about halfway through,” said producer Andrew Watt back in December of 2020. “But, you know, it’s been hard with COVID and everything to keep him safe. We all test every day before we work and it’s just me, Ozzy and my engineer. So it’s taken a little longer this time, but it’s cool because the last one was made in this, like, swift love affair of passion, like, ‘Oh my God, this is incredible!’…But this time everyone’s moving a little slower and we’re taking a little more time.”
Words by Chris Krovatin