Black Sabbath “Paranoid”

Today’s Cool Album of the Day (#292 in the Series) is Black Sabbath, Paranoid.

Black Sabbath, Paranoid……  I don’t think I need to say much about this one now do I?  This was one of the very first metal albums that I owned.  I have a feeling that many of us can say that.  Hey, and we turned out alright, didn’t we?

I went to a rather conservative catholic high school in suburban Chicago.  We had a bus driver that had hooked up a pair of speakers about half way back towards the ceiling. He looked like George Carlin.  He used to blast the 8-track of this on the way to school about 8:00 in the morning.  How cool was he!  I guess you can throw out, ‘a time and a place for everything.’

I can still feel the thump of “War Pigs,” “Iron Man,””Paranoid” and of course “Ferries Wear Boots” bouncing off those yellow painted walls and even the vibration of the padded green seats.  Ha! If the Brothers ever knew!!


  • As recording was winding up, their label Warner Brothers, asked if they had one more song. Tony Iommi started playing a riff he had in his head. Lyrics were added, the band came in and laid it down. In about 30 minutes from conception to completion, the title cut ‘Paranoid’ was born.
  • Paranoid peaked at #12 on the Billboard Top 200 Album chart.
  • Marcus Keef was the photographer responsible for that classic album cover.


  • In 1999, Q magazine (12/99, p. 170) included it in their list of The Best Gothic Albums Of All Time, writing that, “[Black Sabbath] stamped their bombastic and doom-laden imprint on British rock forever.”
  • In 1999, Vibe (12/99, p. 162) included it on their list of 100 Essential Albums of the 20th Century.
  • In 2003, the album was ranked number 130 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.[8]
  • In 2006, the album was ranked number 6 on Guitar World magazine’s list of The Greatest 100 Guitar Albums of All Time.[9]
  • In 2010, Paranoid was covered as part of the Classic Albums documentary series, which examines albums “considered the best or most distinctive of a well known band or musician or that exemplify a stage in the history of music

Track listing

All songs credited to Tony Iommi, Ozzy Osbourne, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward.

Side one

  1. “War Pigs” – 7:55
  2. “Paranoid” – 2:47
  3. “Planet Caravan” – 4:30
  4. “Iron Man” – 5:58

Side two

  1. “Electric Funeral” – 4:47
  2. “Hand of Doom” – 7:07
  3. “Rat Salad” – 2:29
  4. “Fairies Wear Boots” – 6:13


Black Sabbath

  • Ozzy Osbourne – vocals
  • Tony Iommi – guitar
  • Geezer Butler – bass
  • Bill Ward – drums
Additional personnel
  • Rodger Bain – production
  • Tom Allom – engineering, piano on Planet Caravan
  • Brian Humphries – engineering
  • Marcus Keef – Album Cover, design


Back to ‘Cool Album’ HOMEPAGE

Live versions, in album order, of all but one track. Most are from 1970 also.

Posted by Larry Carta

1 Comment

  1. Deadhead103 (21 Feb 2011, 10:28)

    Fantastic live footage of one of the most influential bands in the history of rock, Long Live Ozzy!

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