BLACK SABBATH “Live Evil” – Some Metal Reflections On This 1982 Live Classic…

BLACK SABBATH – Released back in December of 1982, on Warner Bros. Records, Live Evil was the first “official” live Black Sabbath album. (Live At Last was released around 1980 and was not sanctioned by Black Sabbath. I picked up Live At Last on CD years ago, ditching my cassette version, sometime in the early 90’s). When Live Evil hit the store shelves, (which was a Caldor department store for me), it was like knowing something special was waiting for my ears… this was Black Sabbath with Ronnie James Dio and it was live.

The double gatefold album jacket was something else for my eyes all those years ago. So many of the songs characters, from the Black Sabbath catalog, finally came to life, on one album cover. I remember adhering to this Black Sabbath lineup, with Ronnie James Dio, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Vinny Appice as being almost sinister, yet so alluring, due to the dark themes heard on the Heaven And Hell and the Mob Rules albums.

There was this extra special mystique happening with this Live Evil album… as it came across to me, upon my first few listens to this album. I still feel this way to this day. Live Evil seemed to emit a certain Metal mystique that only the Heaven And Hell and Mob Rules albums bestowed before it. As Best Metal Buddy Scott Coverdale and I have discussed over the years, this Live Evil album just seems to ignite with atmospheric waves of mysticity. At least we both know what each other means, in describing this overwhelming vibe that comes across to both our senses.

Since the first time I listened to Live Evil until this very day, the atmosphere of sound that this live album projects makes me feel like I am actually there, witnessing this Black Sabbath lineup jamming out their songs. No, I don’t feel as if I’m front row and center stage either… it’s as if I’m hovering around the outskirts of the crowd, all the while taking in each moment these songs provide. I envision a really dark arena that Black Sabbath performs in too. This may sound crazy to some, only it’s just the way I hear this Live Evil album, especially when I close my eyes and drift off to this highly underrated, live Metal classic.

I no longer have the double vinyl of Live Evil, the double CD I received as a gift from Scott Coverdale, some years ago. Sometimes it’s not all about reviewing an album based on “the standard formula”. There are those times, where I want to reveal just how an album affects me or reacts to me, on a personal level. Live Evil just makes me realize I’m listening to real Metal again… as the songs play, my mind then wanders off to those days of yesteryear, of waiting to catch my ride to a keg party in the woods… as I stand outside in the cold New England snow.

Long Live The Metal Mystique Of Black Sabbath… and Live Evil.


5 Responses to “BLACK SABBATH “Live Evil” – Some Metal Reflections On This 1982 Live Classic…”

  1. I remember as if it was yesterday (well more like a year) when I first got into music and my dad put this entire album on my Sansa Fuze (it is pretty much an ipod) and I would listen to this whole thing on car rides where there was nothing to do but look at everything pass by and I would feel like I was at the concert too just imagining the beginning of Black Sabbath with the wind chime coming from vinny appice, this is my favorite live album of all time and the ozzy years songs on here sound better than the studio (versions to me that is).

    • metalodyssey Says:

      Your liking the Ozzy era songs on “Live Evil” more than the studio versions is understandable for it’s personal taste/choice with music. Plus, your stating this only backs up what I mean about this album giving off some serious “live vibe” with all of the songs heard on it.

  2. This is one of my favorite live albums of all time, I remember getting that vibe from the album before I even owned it, in those days when I would collect vinyl exclusively I would stare at the cover and study it, still one of the best album covers IMO.

    As for the music loved it and even thou alot of my friends hated the way Dio sang the Ozzy Sabbath standards, I admired the fact that he sang this songs in his own style.

    Excellent post.

    • metalodyssey Says:

      Thanks Manny. I could never understand the detractors of Ronnie James Dio. ?? You are right, Ronnie sang the Ozzy era songs with his own style and at the end of the Metal day… those songs are still Black Sabbath.

  3. I Frigin love this Live album. I owned the cassette back in the 80’s and if I recall properly the Cassette version was missing some of the tracks the CD’s have? I just can’t remember which ones were left off. Anyway “Live Evil” kicks some Metal Ass!!

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