A review by Peter Kasnestis


Tony Martin-Lead Vocals, harmonica
Tony Iommi-All Guitars
Cozy Powell-Drums
Neil Murray-Bass
Geoff Nicholls-Keyboards

It was a hot winter night and I was extremely excited. This was going to be my 2nd Black Sabbath concert. The last time I saw them was in 1983 during the Born Again Tour, featuring Ian Gillian, at the Cow Palace in S.F.,Ca. The Cow Palace is a big arena. The Warfield is a theatre which is not as big. The opening bands were a metal-garage sounding band whose name I can't remember and Motorhead. I was able to get my first cousin, John, to come with me since I didn't want to go by myself. It was hard to get anyone to come with me because many fans consider this "version" to be a "fake Sabbath" or " a Tony Iommi solo band". As a die-hard Sabbath fan for over 16 years, who has every Sabbath CD, I was not going to let that stop me! Like Joe Siegler, I love Black Sabbath no matter who's in the band! My favorite Sabbath is with Ozzy/Dio, Dio especially. I am also a big Tony Martin and Cozy Powell fan. I am especially familiar with Cozy Powell on his work with Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow. Before I go into a summary of the concert, I first want to give my grades on the performance:

The opening bands:

* Garage Band-Performance and sound F
* Motorhead-Performance and sound D-
* Black Sabbath-Performance and sound A
* Stage Set C

The concert started approximately 8:30 p.m. The weather that night was very hot. The opening band caught my attention for awhile. The place was not sold-out. There was approximately 5,000 people and a lot of Motorhead fans. I couldn't tell who most of the fans were there to see. I was definitely not there to see Motorhead. Lemmy's voice, to me, sounds thrashy and un-melodic. There were many Black Sabbath and Motorhead shirts. The concert ended up being a double headliner with set time being:

* Garage Band - 45 minutes
* Motorhead - 2 Hours
* Black Sabbath - 1 hour and a half

The very first band I call a "Garage Band" because they sounded exactly like one. That is not meant as a compliment! They sounded more like Motorhead, thrashy vocals and noisy guitars. I stayed for the first 2 songs but became bored because every song started to sound the same. The seat me and my cousin had was upper balcony, right in front of the soundboard. I had an excellent view of the whole stage and the sound was balanced and definitely not as distorted as sitting next to the stage.

Motorhead came onto the stage at 9:05 and the place erupted! Like the previous band, I stayed for two songs and then left and went to where the concert merchandise was being sold. Motorhead was "EXTREMELY LOUD." So loud my ears were ringing! The sound was "EXTREMELY DISTORTED." This kept me from understanding what the hell was going on in the music. I ended up buying a FORBIDDEN TOUR '95 shirt which displayed logos from MOB RULES, DEHUMANIZER, AND FORBIDDEN. On the back of the shirt was a huge cross that had the classic "BLACK SABBATH" engraved in a vertical and horizontal fashion. It cost me $20.00 dollars. I was able to mingle with the people and a lot of Mob Rules shirts were worn. When I went back in, Motorhead was just finishing. It was a climatic finish and the best part of their performance with the drummer, Micky Dee, going crazy on the gong!

Black Sabbath came onto the stage at approximately 10:30 p.m. Everything started turning black as the lights went down. Cozy Powell had a white double bass drum set. When the theatre became pitch-black, a moon appeared at the upper right hand corner of the stage background. The OMEN THEME was blaring in the background. Sabbath suddenly opened with the guitar riff of "Children of the Grave." The stage lights flared through out the stage, on and off, as Cozy played a thunderous tribal rhythm along with along with Iommi's opening riff. Tony Martin then suddenly emerged on the stage and "Children of the Grave" took off. I noticed many fans left after Motorhead, but I didn't care. I was having the time of my life! Tony Iommi was wearing a black tank-top muscle shirt which showed his arms. He was all smiles the whole night. Tony Martin wore a long black sleeve shirt with black jeans, a goatee and a beard. He looked like "Shaggy" from "Scooby Doo " (Ha! Ha!). The song list went as follows:

* Jerry Goldsmith's The Omen Theme: Intro
* Children of the Grave
* Neon Knights
* Children of the Sea
* War Pigs
* The Wizard (Martin harmoinca intro and performance)
* Get a Grip
* Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
* Mob Rules
* Heaven & Hell (no long Iommi solo, more like album version)
* Can't Get Close Enough
* Black Sabbath (with Iommi "Live Evil" guitar intro)
* Headless Cross
* Iron Man
* Paranoid/Heaven & Hell ending - encore


All in all, I thought every song kicked ass and the singing was surprisingly much better than "Cross Purposes Live". But the show, in my opinion, was too short. Being a drummer myself, I was looking forward to hearing a drum solo by Cozy. There also weren't enough newer songs played, especially the ones from "FORBIDDEN." At the end of "Get a Grip" and "Can't Get Close Enough," Tony Martin would say, "Thanks for listening." I thought that was very unprofessional, but I could understand why he did it. The people did not seem to be into the newer Martin Era songs. This sucks for me because I would have love to see "The Shining" live. During "Get a Grip", Cozy did a "double bass drum shuffle" in the middle of the song. Martin repeatedly said, "Get a Grip, yeah!" and pointed the microphone into the audience to repeat but no one would. I also noticed Martin was fixated on the fans nearest to the stage and played too much time and attention with them. I repeatedly tried to yell and scream to catch Martin's attention, but he "never" looked at the upper rows. The crowd was also "Lame." I would try, like Ozzy, to get the crowd involved by waving my hands toward the crowd behind me. Only a few banged their heads with me.

Outside of the "superficial disappointments," the concert kicked ass! I definitely got my money's worth. The drumming and guitaring was excellent, singing was surprisingly good. My first cousin even admitted Martin was much better than he expected. But he is "no Ozzy or Dio." He also admitted that he had a "good time." The weakest part of the performance, which I'm sure most people did not notice, was Neil Murray on the bass. The bass sounded very thin and weak, especially during "Heaven and Hell" and "Headless Cross". Since Neil's timing was good on the tunes, it did not ruin or damage any of the songs. I was extremely impressed with Cozy Powell. He is actually my favorite Sabbath drummer and would have loved to see the original Sab, Tony, Geezer, Ozzy with Cozy play as a group. This was rumored to have actually happened if Ozzy would have rejoined Sabbath since Bill Ward agreed to only do the "European Part" of the "Reunion Tour." The drum sound was "deep" and "punchy." I especially loved his drumming on "The Wizard" and "Heaven and Hell." My first cousin was especially impressed with "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath." After the concert, he though the lineup played its best on "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath." In other words, it was his favorite song of the concert.

Here is how I would grade the performance of each band member:

* Cozy Powell - Drums A+
* Tony Iommi - Guitars A+
* Tony Martin - Vocals B+ (Excellent effort but is not the caliber or level of Ozzy or Dio)
* Neil Murray - Bass C (Adequate performance, not the caliber or level of Geezer Butler on the Ozzy/Dio Sabbath songs)

The grade of the concert averages out to an A-. As a die-hard SAbbath fan, I am looking forward to going to any new Sabbath concert that comes to town. I greatly regret not going to the "Seventh Star," "Headless Cross" and "Cross Purposes" Tour. The "Tyr" Tour never came to the States. Regardless who's in the band, I love 'em! If you have questions about this concert or the band, please e-mail me at

Posted by: Joe Siegler Author Profile Page at July 13, 2010 12:11 PM