To be quite honest I was pretty apprehensive about this album. I mean, Gillan ‘n’ Sabbath… had to be a joke, right? Wrong. As soon as the stylus hit the wax I was shocked. Born Again is a very good album. Alright, so Gillan may not be the perfect frontman for the Sabs (denim jacket and bongo drums?), but it’s not likely he’s about to pack his bags and leave so it’s up to Sabbath fans to accept him.
Side one contains the album’s greatest moments and is nigh on faultless. ‘Trashed’, ‘Disturbing The Priest’ and ‘Zero The Hero’ are all excellent with Tony lommi providing the thick riffs while Geezer Butler and Bill Ward contribute the thunderous rhythm section.
Side two. Well, that’s not so hot. ‘Born Again’, the opener, becomes rather tedious after a while due mainly to Gillan’s continual moaning and groaning, but my faith in the album is soon restored with ‘Digital Bitch’ and ‘Hot Line’, two of the album’s heaviest tracks (and I mean heavy). ‘Keep It Warm’, the album’s final track, is rather weak in comparison to the rest of the material, but as always Tony lommi adds some great guitar playing.
All in all, Born Again is an excellent debut for the new line-up and if they can better this material on the next album then they may conquer the world yet again.
Review taken from Metal Forces, Issue 2 (1983)
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