Released November ??, 1973
Re-Released February 28, 1996
Re-Released April 27, 2004 (Black Box)
Re-Released September 16, 2009

[ Lyrics | Tour Dates ]


2009 CD [ Amazon UK | Amazon US ] | 2011 Vinyl [ Amazon US ]
2004 CD [ Amazon US ] | 1996 CD [ Amazon US | Amazon UK ]
Original CD [ Amazon US | Amazon UK ]

Track Listing

  1. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
  2. A National Acrobat
  3. Fluff
  4. Sabbra Cadabra
  5. Killing Yourself to Live
  6. Who are You?
  7. Looking for Today
  8. Spiral Architect

Writing Credits

  • All songs written and arranged by Black Sabbath


  • Ozzy Osbourne – Vocals
  • Tony Iommi – Guitar
  • Geezer Butler – Bass
  • Bill Ward – Drums
  • Rick Wakeman – Piano & Synthesiser
  • Produced by Black Sabbath
  • Engineered by Mike Butcher
  • Album Concept & Design Pacific Eye and Ear
  • Illustrations: Drew Struzan
  • 1996 Remaster by Ray Staff @ Whitfield St Studios
  • 1996 Design, Art, & Sleevenotes by Hugh Gilmour
  • 2009 Remaster by Andy Pearce & Matt Wortham @ Wired Masters
  • 2009 Project Management: Jon Richards
  • 2009 Project Consultants: Steve Hammonds & Hugh Gilmour
  • 2009 Sleeve Notes: Jerry Ewing
  • 2009 Design: Hugh Gilmour
  • 2012 Digital Remaster by Andy Pearce & Matt Wortham
  • 2012 Vinyl Mastering by Greg Moore @ Masterpiece

Catalogue Numbers

  • LP Vertigo 6360 115 (UK 1973)
  • LP Vertigo 6366 101 (EUR 1973)
  • CASS Vertigo 7229-002 (EUR 1973)
  • LP WWA WWA-005 (EUR 1973)
  • LP WWA 6366-201-A (IT 1973)
  • CASS Warner Bros M5-2695 (US 1974)
  • LP Warner Bros BS-2695 (US 1974)
  • LP PGPRTB LP-5825 (YUG 1974)
  • LP Nippon RJ-7031 (JPN 1975)
  • LP Vertigo BT-5155 (JPN 1978)
  • CASS NEMS INT-435.606 (GER 1980)
  • LP NEMS NEL-6017 (UK 1980)
  • LP Intercord INT-145.620 (GER 1980)
  • LP NEMS 16L0144 (SPN 1981)
  • LP Ariston ARM/42009 (ITL 1981)
  • LP Victoria VLP-103 (SPN 1984)
  • LP Castle CLALP-201 (GER 1985)
  • LP NEMS NEL-6017-3 (GER 1985)
  • CD Castle CLACD-201 (FRA 1986)
  • CD Castle NELCD-6017 (FRA 1986)
  • LP Young 304.7036 (BRA 1986)
  • LP Vertigo 832-700-1 (NET 1987)
  • CD Warner Bros 2695-2 (US 1988)
  • LP SNC C90-31085-007 (RUS 1990)
  • CD Essential ESMCD305 (UK 1996)
  • CD Teichiku TECI-24032 (JPN 2000)
  • CD Castle CMTCD028 (UK 2000)
  • LP Sanctuary CMHLP196 (UK 2001)
  • CD Rhino R2-73923-E (US 2004 – Black Box)
  • CD Sanctuary SMRCD035 (UK 2004)
  • LP Earmark 641012 (IT 2004)
  • LP Earmark 641012-P (IT 2004 – Picture Disc)
  • CD Strange Days POCE-1101 (JPN 2007)
  • CD Strange Days POCE-9111 (JPN 2008)
  • CD Universal UICY-94186 (JPN 2009)
  • CD Universal 2716846 (UK 2009)
  • LP Universal 2716848 (UK 2009)
  • LP Warner Bros R1-2695 (US 2011)
  • CD Universal UICY-25120 (JPN 2011)
  • LP Sanctuary 3715293 (UK 2012)


  • There is a (rather goofy) music video for the song “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath”.
  • Rick Wakeman (of Yes) plays keyboards on some of this album.  Some years later, Rick’s son Adam would tour with Black Sabbath, and in 2012 appear on a studio Black Sabbath album.
  • Killing Yourself to Live has also at times had subtitles of “You Think That I’m Crazy” & “I Don’t Know if I’m Up or Down”.
  • The lyric “silver ships on plasmic oceans in disguise” is about injecting drugs, according to Geezer Butler.  Geezer had this to say about the lyric..  “its about injecting drugs, the needle being the silver ship, the plasmic ocean being blood.”
  • The original vinyl gatefold opened to show a picture of the band in a bedroom.  That picture can be seen at the top of this page.
  • When this album was re-released in 2004 as part of the “Black Box” set, the spine on some printings had a misprint.  It said “Sabbath Bloddy Sabbath”.



  • The back cover of the original album has an “opposite” to the front cover of the album. That is shown here.

  • The following are the CD back cover images for the 1996 & 2009 releases, respectively.

  • The following images are from the original Warner Bros release of the album on cassette tape in the US.

  • The following is a picture of an old 8 track version of the album, apparently from Warner Bros in the US.


NOTE: These lyrics are verified against the lyrics that appear in the “Black Box” booklet. Those lyrics were gone over by Geezer Butler (who wrote most of them anyway) for that set, and for that reason should be considered definitive.

You’ve seen right through distorted lies
You know you have to learn
The execution of your mind
You really had to turn
The race is run the book is read
The end begins to show
The truth is out, the lies are old
But you don’t want to know

Nobody will ever let you know
When you ask the reason why
They just tell you that you’re on your own
Fill your head all full of lies

The people who have crippled you
You want to see them burn
The gates of life have closed on you
And now there’s just no return
You’re wishing that the hand of doom
Could take your mind away
And you don’t care if you don’t see again
The light of day

Nobody will ever let you know
When you ask the reasons why
They just tell you that you’re on your own
Fill your head all full of lies

Where can you run to
What more can you do
No more tomorrow
Life is killing you
Dreams turn to nightmares
Heaven turns to hell
Burned out confusion
Nothing more to tell

Everything around you
What’s it coming to
God knows as your dognose
Bog blast all of you
Sabbath bloody sabbath
Nothing more to do
Living just for dying
Dying just for you


A National Acrobat

I am the world that hides
The universal secret of all time
Destruction of the empty spaces
Is my one and only crime
I’ve lived a thousand times
I found out what it means to be believed
The thoughts and images
The unborn child that never was conceived

When little worlds collide
I’m trapped inside my embryonic cell
And flashing memories
Are cast into the never-ending well
The name that scorns the face
The child that never sees the cause of man
The deathly darkness that
Belies the fate of those who never ran

Well I know its hard for you
To know the reason why
And I know you’ll understand
More when it’s time to die
Don’t believe the life you have
Will be the only one
You have to let your body sleep
To let your soul live on

I want you to listen
I’m trying to get through

Love has given life to you
And now it’s your concern
Unseen eye of inner life
Will make your soul return
Still I look but not to touch
The seeds of life are sown
Curtain of the future falls
The secret stays unknown

Just remember love is life
And hate is living death
Treat your life for what it’s worth
And live for every breath
Looking back I’ve lived and learned
But now I’m wondering
Here I wait and only guess
What this next life will bring





Sabbra Cadabra

Feel so good I feel so fine
Love that little lady always on my mind
She gives me loving every night and day
Never gonna leave her, never going away

Someone to love me
You know she makes me feel alright
Someone to need me
Love me every single night

Feel so happy since I met that girl
When we’re making love it’s something out of this world
Feels so good to know that she’s all mine
Going to love that woman ’til the end of time

Someone to live for
Love me ’til the end of time
Makes me feel happy
Good to know that she’s all mine

Lovely lady make love all night long
Lovely lady never do me wrong
I don’t wanna leave ya
I never ganna leave ya,
anymore no more

Lovely lady, mystifying eyes
Lovely lady, she don’t tell me no lies
I know I’ll never leave ya
I’m never gonna leave ya anymore no more


Killing Yourself to Live

Well people look and people stare
Well I don’t think that I even care
You work your life away and what do they give?
You’re only killing yourself to live
Killing yourself to live

Just take a look around you what do you see
Pain, suffering, and misery
It’s not the way that the world was planned
It’s a pity you don’t understand
Killing yourself to live

I’m telling you
Believe in me
Nobody else will tell you
Open your eyes
And see the lies, oh yeah

You think I’m crazy and baby
I know that it’s true
Before that you know it I think
That you’ll go crazy too

I don’t know if I’m up or down
Whether black is white or blue is brown
The colors of my life are all different somehow
Little boy blue’s a big girl now

So you think it’s me who’s strange
But you’ve never had to make the change
Never give your trust away
You’ll end up paying ’til your dying day


Who Are You?

Yes I know the secret
That’s within your mind
You think all the people
Who worship you are blind
You’re just like Big Brother

Giving us your trust
And when you have played enough
You’ll just cast our souls
Into the dust
Into the dust

You thought that it would be easy
From the very start
Now I’ve found you out
I don’t think you’re so smart
I only have one more question
Before my time is through
Please I beg you tell me
In the name of hell
Who are you?
Who are you?


Looking for Today

It’s complete but obsolete
All tomorrows become yesterday
In demand but second-hand
It’s been heard before you even play

Up to date but came too late
Better get yourself another name
You’re so right but overnight
You’re the one who has to take the blame

Everyone just gets on top of you
The pain begins to eat your pride
You can’t believe in anything you knew
When was the last time that you cried

Don’t delay you’re in today
But tomorrow is another dream
Sunday’s star is Monday’s scar
Out of date before you’re even seen

At the top so quick to flop
You’re so new but rotting in decay
Like butterfly so quick to die
But you’re only looking for today

Everyone just gets on top of you
The pain begins to eat your pride
You can’t believe in anything you knew
When was the last time that you cried
Looking for today

Glamour trip so soon to slip
Easy come but oh how quick it goes
Ten foot tall but what a fall
Hard to open yet so easy to close
Front page news but so abused
You just want to hide yourself away
Overpaid, but soon you fade
Because you’re only looking for today
Looking for today


Spiral Architect

Sorcerers of madness
Selling me their time
Child of god sitting in the sun
Giving peace of mind
Fictional seduction
On a black-snow sky
Sadness kills the superman
Even fathers cry

Of all the things I value most of all
I look inside myself and see
My world and know that it is good
You know that I should

Superstitious century
Didn’t time go slow
Separating sanity
Watching children grow
Synchronated undertaker
Spiral skies
Silver ships on plasmic oceans
In disguise

Of all the things I value most in life
I see my memories and feel their warmth
And know that they are good
You know that I should

Watching eyes of celluloid
Tell you how to live
Metaphoric motor-replay
Give, give, give!
Laughter kissing love
Is showing me the way
Spiral city architect
I build, you pay

Of all the things I value most of all
I look upon my earth and feel the warmth
And know that it is good
You know that I should


  1. elliott buckingham says

    i have this on original wwa vinyl with a brilliant misprint. it has two side 2 labels

  2. david nugent says

    Regarding the lyrics to ‘Who Are You’…I’ve encountered two different points of view as to whether the question is directed to God or Satan…mind you, I’ve lived with this little matter for almost 40 years…could you clear this up once and for all…thanks David.

  3. Just a correction. You have the wrong title for the last song, it should be “Looking for Today.”

  4. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath remains my favourite Sab’s album, along with Heaven and Hell/Mob Rules. The tunes are just so good, Ozzy’s in great form and the songs are diverse. Good arrangements – very 70’s! Top geezers, top band.

  5. Chris Tatton says

    What does Ozzy say in the title song, before the lyric: “Where can you run to?”. Does he say “You Bastard” or is it just me?

  6. D.Cheema says

    I am pretty certain that this LP was never issued in the UK on Vertigo, there is an interesting and I must say tantilisingly specific reference as Vertigo 6360 115 (UK). The only domestic copy I have seen from the time is WWA. There are Vertigo pressings but for other territories, I think they are places like South Africa and New Zealand. But when all is said and done I would love to see it on UK Vertigo, I hope I am wrong.

    *I think Spiral Architect has been included in a (Universal) Vertigo Box Set celebrating the Classic Vertigo period with the Linda Glover label design. Ms Glover was asked by Label boss and founder Olav Wyper to come up with the design.

  7. vito monteiro says

    good album indeed. a bit of progressive rock here. different sounds and the only songs to me that are standard sabbath are killing… and th title track . good album for sure

  8. PyroMessiah says

    I have a pressing not listed here, shown here at discogs:

    It flips the last two songs strangely.

    • I have this CD myself actually. It’s an unofficial pressing with a generic text back, licensed to Creative Sounds by Dorchester Holdings. This website, IIRC, only lists official versions. Their version of Black Sabbath also flips the last two songs of the U.S. version – or, perhaps, it is taken from the track order of the 1996 UK CD with Evil Woman taken back out. Hard to say with unofficial versions…. :)

  9. Original cover and back cover arts are posted here:

  10. The 09 Remaster of Sabbath Bloody Sabbath is the best Black sabbath is the best rock on

  11. Favorite Sab album cover. Sets the tone for sure. I like Paranoid and Master of Reality for the heaviness, but I really like Sabbath Bloody Sabbath and Sabotage for being successfully more progressive. Great lyrics from Geezer too.

  12. Hate to rain on anyones parade but the last line of the first verse of Spiral Architect should actually read He was fathers pride as printed in the Sabbath Bloody Sabbath songbook. Published in the UK by Essex Music 1973.

  13. I could listen to this album all the time. Except maybe one song, Who are You? I can’t stand it, it’s too experimental and it’s really tedious. But the rest of the album is mind-blowing. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath is the greatest opening track in the history of music. A national acrobat and Sabbra Cadabra are really great as well, even though Sabbra Cadabra looses me about halfway through. Killing yourself to live is just pure Sabbath. Spiral Architect took awhile to grab me, but now it’s one of my top Sabbath tracks. Looking for today and fluff are nothing more than filler, but it’s the best filler ever recorded. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath is an essential album.

  14. Fabio Bastos says

    Hey, Joe.

    Have you ever heard about a fuzz down here in Brazil about a similarity between Sabbath Bloody Sabbath and a song called What to Do from a brazilian female singer named Vanusa? She was quite famous back in the 60’s and 70’s around here.

    The initial riff of What to Do is quite the same, the rest of the song, not, but the thing is that it was released here in September 1973, barely three months before Sabbath’s album.

    Of course, no one believes Tony Iommi had been influenced but someone brazilians themselves barely knew but it’s a curious fact.

    Check it out:


  15. Bo Andersen says

    Hey Fabio

    Strange that you brought this up. I can add some to this:
    In 1973 there was a bootleg recorded, called “Love In Chicago”
    The setlist includes a song called “What To Do”. I always wondered why?
    It now makes sense, because the song Sabbath Bloody Sabbath is not listed.
    -See bootleg list in back of Chris Welch book “Black Sabbath”, it is mentioned here.

  16. I’ve Always cathegorize the Ozzy Era in 4 different “sub-eras” when it comes to the Music style and their progression.
    Era 1 (68-70): The early demos.
    Era 2: Black Sabbath. Paranoid & Master of reality
    Era 3: Vol 4, SBS & Sabotage
    Era 4: technical Exstacy & NSD

    Oh man, they are really at the top of their career with Sabbath Bloody Sabbath. From the “evil doomy” heaviness and simplicity in their first three albums, to Vol 4 that really took the Sabs into a new more “progressive” direction, to this album that in my ears is probably the best written and best preformed album in the life of this band.

    Ozzys voice is incredible and he is really at his best here. The songs are really solid (although “who are you?” seems to me a little boring and in my ears it’s the one and only “filler” on the album).

    As in the previous mentioned album (Vol 4), the Sabs took with Sabbath bloody sabbath even a bigger step from the dark-doomy sound, into a more “Heavy rock” direction. In this case, it really doesn’t matter to me, because this album is so extremely solid and well done by the band.
    It’s really a experementative album by them, and a very interesting listening, with a good variety of songs. Favourite tracks on this record is impossible to say, cause every single song makes the album (well, except “who are you?” in my opinion). But if I have to give it a shot; I would say “killing yourself to live” and “spiral architect”.
    In my ears, the band sadly started to go the wrong direction musically after this release, although I like “sabotage” and even the latter stuff (my “Era 4 albums”) extremely much aswell.

  17. Yugoslavian (PGP RTB) release have different artwork:

  18. First line is “You’ve seen life through distorted eyes” according to original LP lyric sheet.

  19. Steve Armourae says

    Something to find for this page: there is an alternative front cover to this album. I’ve only seen one lower resolution picture, the black background is replaced with white and the blocky font is replaced by an italic font very similar to Caslon Version font (here for a sample ) The difference makes the cover jump out more but is less sinister than the black version.

    As far as I can tell Drew Struzan’s inspiration were; Grumwald’s Temptation of Saint Anthony for the front & Salvador Dali’s Last Supper for the back cover

  20. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath was THE first Black Sabbath song I heard, that riff…
    Experimental album, I still discover something “new” every time I play this album.

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