Tony Iommi Plotting Box Set of Tony Martin-Era Black Sabbath

  • Axl Rosenberg

Fans of Black Sabbath’s third-most popular singer, rejoice: Tony Iommi has revealed that he plans to release a box set centered around the Tony Martin era of the band.

The guitarist tells Noisecreep:

“I’ve got a lot of lots and lots and lots of recordings of stuff we’ve done in the past that’s never seen the light of day. I’d like to sort some of that out and put that on some of the albums. We are gradually going through these box sets and then there will be a Tony Martin [era] box set at some point coming out and stuff with Ian Gillan maybe. So, yes, there’ll be other songs added, but it’s never been used for anything.”

If you’re like me, your first questions after reading that statement was, “Why would you release a Tony Martin-era box set?”, “Are you sure you wanna release a Tony Martin-era box set?,” and “Maybe don’t release a Tony Martin-era box set?”. But Iommi justified the decision thusly:

“It’s unfortunate that over the years Tony Martin has got buried in all this Ozzy and Dio stuff and everything. There will be a period now where we’ll be able to release the box set with the Tony Martin albums with some good outtakes as well. I’ve already mixed [it] here at home, so that’s all ready to go, but we have to wait until the time is right. We can’t put all these things out together — it would cause confusion.”

I know there must be people who are stoked on this. Every few years I try to listen to some of Sabbath’s non-Ozzy, non-Dio offerings, and I never make it very far. The best ones are fine, which isn’t very good by Black Sabbath standards. I don’t think this is as ludicrous as if Iron Maiden announced a Blaze Bayley-era box set, but it’s probably about as logical as if Anthrax released a Neil Turbin-era box set.

This next thing Iommi said, though, does interest me:

“To be honest, I’ve got boxes and boxes of stuff that’s probably never been heard. Even I can’t remember it all, it’s just a matter of rolling through it and finding it all — Oh, there’s another song we did with Dio or Tony Martin or Ozzy or whatever.”

If Iommi wants a volunteer to go all through that shit for him, I, and likely a few million other Sabbath fans, would be only too happy to help. Tony! Have your people call my people!!!

Read the interview here.

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