If you listened very closely on Tuesday night during Black Sabbath's return to the city, you could hear the Big Bang of heavy metal echoing through the sweat-drenched Los Angeles Sports Arena.More at that top link.
It was buried in the slow, menacing guitar lines of guitarist Tony Iommi, and propelled by Geezer Butler's cavernous bass lines. And it was in the unholy yowl of Ozzy Osbourne, 64, shuffling along the stage like a retired vampire in search of a blood nurse, who long ago moved beyond a parody of himself to become a virtual trademark in black.
Performing songs from the band's first decade (before Osbourne was booted from the group for drug-fueled debauchery, replaced by Ronnie James Dio), Sabbath offered distorted rock music as simple yet as inarguably useful as your basic table or chair. That they all wore black is understood.
The band played the MGM Grand last Sunday. I tweeted from the hotel:
Black Sabbath playing @MGMGrand tonight. Punk rockers must love Ozzy. They're swarming the place. #Vegas pic.twitter.com/pdGr7VknGi
— Donald Douglas (@AmPowerBlog) September 2, 2013
When we were checking out on Monday we saw a couple of tween girls with Black Sabbath t-shirts in the elevator on the way down. Turns out the parents let the girls attend on their own. I saw them and said, "So, how was it"? The kids just smiled and Dad said he'd given his tickets to them. Pretty cool.
My wife and I had two tickets on offer from MGM, by the way, but chose instead to be comped four nights at the hotel. Maybe another time, if Ozzy's still rocking, that is.
Oh, that video at top's from Birmingham, England, 2012, at the Black Sabbath YouTube page. High quality. They're really tuned in.