Released April 29, 1996


 CD [ Amazon UK | Amazon US ]

Track Listing

  1. Headless Cross
  2. When Death Calls
  3. Devil And Daughter
  4. The Sabbath Stones
  5. The Battle Of Tyr
  6. Odin’s Court
  7. Valhalla
  8. TV Crimes
  9. Virtual Death
  10. Evil Eye
  11. Kiss Of Death
  12. Guilty As Hell
  13. Loser Gets It All
  14. Disturbing The Priest
  15. Heart Like A Wheel
  16. The Shining

Writing Credits

  • Martin/Iommi/Powell – Tracks 1,3
  • Martin/Iommi/Powell/Nicholls – Track 2
  • Iommi/Martin/Nicholls/Powell/Murray – Track 4,6-7
  • Iommi/Nicholls/Powell/Murray – Track 5
  • Butler/Dio/Iommi – Track 8
  • Butler/Iommi/Martin – Track 9,10
  • Black Sabbath/Lyrics:Tony Martin – Tracks 11-13
  • Gillan/Iommi/Butler/Ward – Track 14
  • Iommi – Tracks 15,16


  • Tony Iommi – Guitar
  • Geoff Nicholls – Keyboards
  • Tony Martin – Vocals
  • Ronnie James Dio – Vocals
  • Ian Gillan – Vocals
  • Glenn Hughes – Vocals
  • Geezer Butler – Bass
  • Dave Spitz – Bass
  • Bob Daisley – Bass
  • Laurence Cottle – Bass
  • Neil Murray – Bass
  • Bill Ward – Drums
  • Eric Singer – Drums
  • Cozy Powell – Drums
  • Vinny Appice – Drums
  • Bobby Rondinelli – Drums
  • Compilation Producer – Steve Bennett & Paul Banfield

Credits – Producers

  • Tony Iommi & Cozy Powell – Tracks 1-7
  • Mack for Musicland GmbH – Track 8
  • Leif Mases / Black Sabbath – Tracks 9,10
  • Ernie C. – Tracks 11-13
  • Robin Black – Track 14
  • Jeff Glixman & Chris Tsangerides – Track 15
  • Jeff Glixman & V. Cooper – Track 16

Catalogue Numbers

  • CD I.R.S. 7243-8-37532-2-2 (UK 1996)
  • CASS I.R.S 7243 8 37532 4 6 (UK 1996)


  • The Sabbath Stones was the final release the I.R.S. recording contract. It was pretty much done to fulfull the band’s obligations with I.R.S, as relations at that time were not very good due to a general lack of support leading up to this time.
  • This compilation was never released in the US/North America.  Just Europe.
  • The track “Loser Gets it All” originally appeared on the Japanese version of the Forbidden album.  Other than that Japanese copy, this compilation is the only place to get that track.
  • On the Headless Cross album, the first track is “The Gates of Hell”, which is an instrumental leadin to the track “Headless Cross”.  On this compilation, the last few seconds of “The Gates of Hell” are used here as an intro, but are not segregated out into their own track (or listed here, either).
  • Vinny Appice’s name is spelled incorrectly on the front cover of the CD (as Vinnie).
  • In the CD case is a short two page story on Black Sabbath (with some mistakes).  It goes:

Often imitated – but never surpassed – since it’s inception nin 1969, Black Sabbath has become one of the most influential bands in the field of contemporary rock music. The original lineup of Tony Iommi, Ozzy Osbourne, Geezer Butler, and Bill Ward spawned classics like Paranoid, War Pigs, Iron Man, & many others, which were to case a long, dark shadow over the development of a wide diversity of subsequent groups, rom Pantera to Body Count.

Despite line up changes over the years, Black Sabbath has continued to dominate the field of hard rock. With band mainstay Tony Iommi universally acknowledged as the world’s leading guitarist in the genre, each successive Sabbath album has contained work that has excited and intrigued his peers – as well as inspiring millions of air guitar players to snatch up their tennis racquets and post in front of the bedroom mirror! I.R.S’s signing of Sabbath towards the end of the 80’s was the opening of a new phase for the band, and The Sabbath Stones recalls some of the milestones of it’s most recent career.

Having teamed up with awesome vocalist Tony Martin for 1987’s The Eternal Idol album, Iommi recruited powerhouse rhythm section Cozy Powell (drums) and Neil Murray (bass) to record the band’s IRS debut, the majestic, broad sweeping Headless Cross, released in 1989 to much critical acclaim. (Ed Note: Wrong. Headless Cross did not have Neil Murray on Bass. Neil didn’t join until after the album was already finished). The band followed through consistently with the equally popular Tyr, which under the lyrical direction of Tony Martin, largely abandoned it’s traditional focus on the occult to delve into the world of myth and legend.

Sabbath received a setback in 1991 Cozy suffered a serious riding accident which put him out of action for several months, but in the interim Iommi recorded the 1983 lineup of the band, (Ed Note: Wrong. This lineup broke up in late 1982) with fellow founder Geezer Butler back on bass, vocalist Ronnie James Dio and drummer Vinnie Appice. (Ed Note: Wrong. It’s spelled Vinny) They recorded one album together, 1992’s Dehumanizer, from which TV Crimes was released as a single, becoming a top 30 hit in the UK.

Moves to reunite Black Sabbath’s original lineup led to the departure of Dio and Appice and when the reformation proved abortive, Iommi invited Tony Martin to rejoin the band and, together with Bobby Rondinelli on drums and Butler on bass, they recorded Cross Purposes in 1994. (Ed Note: Wrong. It was recorded in 1993, and released in Jan 1994).

By 1995, with Neil Murray and Cozy Powell both at a loose end following the end of a lengthy world tour with Brian May, Iommi decided to put the powerful Headless Cross/Tyr team back together again – but this time with a difference. Instead of Iommi & Powell producing themselves, they handed over the reins to long tim fan and Body Count member Ernie C, who gave their last album for I.R.S., Forbidden, a forceful stripped down sound that bought the band right up to date for the mid nineties.

In addition to a selection of music from the albums recorded during their deal with I.R.S, The Sabbath Stones also includes four bonus tracks for fans. Disturbing the Priest is taken from Born Again, the 1983 album which saw the world’s legendary rock vocalist – Ian Gillan – and Heart Like a Wheel originally featured on the blues Seventh Star, with Glenn Hughes on vocals. The Shining marked Tony Martin’s debut with the band on The Eternal Idol, and has since become a perennial live favourite, while Loser Gets it All was recorded during the Forbidden sessions and despite being a personal favourite of Tony Iommi’s, has previously only been released on the Japanese pressing of that album.

The Sabbath Stones marks the end of an era in the history of Black Sabbath, while a new chapter is just about to open. Whatever the future brings, one thing is for certain: the works of Black Sabbath will continue to be the benchmark by which hard and heavy music is judged.



  • This image is a scan of the back cover of the CD jewel case “art”.


  1. At the time, I didn’t listen to anything after headless cross because I just didn’t like it. (I did get Dehumanizer) and a friend of mine was playing this. It had some great tunes I never heard before. So, this album motivated me to pick up TYR an Cross purposes.

  2. The Sabbath Stones was released in CD in Brazil in 1996…very hard to find…

  3. I’ve got the Japanese pressing (TOCP-8881) of this compilation, which actually omits the track Loser Gets It All.
    Paired with the Between Heaven And Hell album, this was a good career-spanning overview of Black Sabbath back in ’96.

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