Black Sabbath
Tyr


4.0
excellent

Review

by James McDermott USER (4 Reviews)
February 28th, 2008 | 17 replies | 11,315 views


Release Date: 1990 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A new installment of Black Sabbath delivers an excellent album that boldly stands on its own against other classics of previous Black Sabbath eras.

1 of 1 thought this review was well written

In Norse mythology Tyr was the god of war and patron god of justice until Odin came along. He was also regarded as being the boldest of the gods which is something he and Black Sabbath’s fifteenth studio release have in common. Tyr was released in the United Kingdom and United States in late August of 1990. This album is filled with many hits and few misses as well as more references to Norse mythology, Latin lyrics, and yet another new band lineup.

Who the Heaven & Hell is still in Black Sabbath? Well fortunately for us lead guitarist and sole surviving Black Sabbath member Tony Iommi has remained with the band from day one. Also returning on Tyr from the Headless Cross album are Cozy Powell on drums, vocalist Tony Martin and Geoff Nicholls on keyboards. Laurence Cottle however did not return to play on Tyr and was replaced with former Whitesnake bassist Neil Murray.

Tyr starts off on a rather poor note in Anno Mundi. It is one of the longer tracks on the album at 6 minutes and 13 seconds and is extremely boring. At the time I bet it seemed like a good idea, but I found the chanting of "Spiritus Sanctus Anno Anno Mundi" to be very cheesy and not in a good way. Throughout the song it seemed like things were slowly building up to a big climax, but that moment never came and the track just dragged until the end. I also noticed that the guitar intro for this song sounded extremely reminiscent of the intro to Children of the Sea off the Heaven & Hell album only stripped of all its beauty. Don’t stop listening yet though because this album is about to get a much needed kick start from The Law Maker. Immediately we are bombarded with thundering drums from Cozy Powell and one hell of a vicious riff from Tony Iommi. This fast paced song is sure to wake you up if you happened to fall asleep during Anno Mundi. Finally in this song we get the first orgasmic Tony Iommi guitar solo and it was worth the wait.

Next is one of the best tracks on the album, Jerusalem. Tony Martin really shows off his range here especially when singing the chorus line “Jerusalem.” With consistent drumming, nice guitar and vocal work all around, and a dark yet somehow hopeful atmosphere created by Geoff Nicholls on his keyboards make this by far the catchiest song on Tyr. The Sabbath Stones starts off with brooding lyrics and a vision of doom created by the rest of the band. You can tell right away this is building up to be something good and the Black Sabbath does not disappoint. This in my opinion is the best song on the album lyrically.

“Fire and water, wind and rain
wings that carry hell in every vein
World possessions, endless tears
truth and knowledge stolen all their years”


Now usually I’m a fan of “filler”, but to me the instrumental track “The Battle of Tyr” was just a pointless waste of time. At 1 minute and 9 seconds it did not really add to the album and takes away from the overall flow and momentum of Tyr. I think this might have possibly worked a little better if it was the first track or just not be on the album at all. Next Geoff Nicholls creates a much mellower atmosphere on Odin’s Court than on the previous ones while Tony Iommi lightly plucks away at his guitar in this beautifully composed song.

The last three tracks include more top notch material from this installment of Black Sabbath. Valhalla is another in your face track right from the beginning and is a good way to pick up the pace again after Odin’s Court has finished. Feels Good To Me is the single off Tyr and is the closest thing to a power ballad you will find on this release. You can also find a music video for it if you look hard enough. Now we finally come to Heaven in Black. This was the perfect song to end the album and could have easily been released as the first single to help promote the album as it is very catchy and fun song to rock out to.

Overall this is a very enjoyable album to listen to. Cozy Powell, Tony Iommi, Tony Martin and Geoff Nicholls really did an outstanding job taking the next step up from Headless Cross. One complaint though is that Neil Murray seemed to be drowned out on the majority of the songs. At times when some of the songs start to get heavier he seems almost nonexistent. I would recommend this album to any Black Sabbath fan, but I have a feeling Die hard Ozzy Osbourne or Dio fans might not enjoy this.

*Fun Fact* When translated to English Anno Mundi means “Year of the World.” While “Spiritus Sanctus” means Holy Spirit.


user ratings (304)
Chart.
2.9
good
other reviews of this album
Matthijs van der Lee (1.5)
Iommi and company are not done proving Black Sabbath officialy failed to exist past 1982....


Comments:Add a Comment 
Remembrance
February 28th 2008



45 Comments


Setting the word "Tyr" in caps every time you use it isn't needed really. Other then that good review.This Message Edited On 02.28.08

Meatplow
February 28th 2008



5524 Comments


Nice review.

I am strongly familiar with the early era of Sabbath featuring Ozzy and some of Dio (which is generally regarded as their prime, despite most hardcore Sabbath fans claiming later eras such as Tony Martin as personal faves) but this is a complete mystery to me apart from some clips I have seen from The Black Sabbath Story. I'm tempted to investigate.

cometuesday
February 28th 2008



959 Comments


Wow I truthfully didn't even know that Sabbath was still around at this point (in some way, at least). Ridiculous.

Brew
February 28th 2008



24 Comments


I got a vinyl copy of this yesterday, at the moment I'd say its my favourite post-Ozzy-era Black Sabbath album.

If you can track down an original cd/vinyl release of this album Neil Murray's bass is a bit higher in the mix.

Hewitt
February 28th 2008



371 Comments


Good review, makes me want to check out the rest of the cd since I've only heard Jerusalem.

vanderb0b
May 18th 2010



3473 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Good album, not as good as Heaven and Hell, although.

BlackSabbath
October 1st 2010



57 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

TYR is the highlight of the Tony Martin fronted Black Sabbath. Hands down their best album (Martin-era).

rockandmetaljunkie
June 26th 2011



3302 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

The Sabbath Stones is indeed the best song here.
The rest of the album a little bit boring

dannyboy89
February 18th 2012



7888 Comments


I'm digging this album. Martin does little that Dio hasn't already done. That's a mayor limitation.

*heard it*

It's an okay record, but nothing above the Ozzy Era, and certainly not above the Dio Era. I think Martin's major flaw is that he is a Dio wannabe, and lacks his own style.

Digging: Agalloch - The Mantle

facupm
May 11th 2012



5623 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Anno Mundi is one of the best non-Ozzy era songs, i desagree with you there.
Despite that, I liked the review, Tyr is a solid effort

Digging: Queens of the Stone Age - Songs for the Deaf

manosg
February 5th 2013



4695 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This is certainly an enjoyable listen. It doesn't have the doomy sound of the Ozzy-period as its sound is closer to what they did with Dio.

Digging: Jan Akkerman - Tabernakel

linguist2011
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013



1777 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

The sound on this album is interestingly different from the last album, 'Headless Cross', in which the guitar appears much more melodic and the songwriting being more focused on than ever before. It also concentrates on Norse mythology, which I always like learning about, so I guess that's a bonus. The vocals for me however are a little weak, compared to the instrumentation of the other band members.

facupm
January 27th 2014



5623 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I still like the album

mark7477
March 11th 2014



389 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

The songs overall are very mediocre in my opinion maybe 1 or 2 of them has some sense of enjoyment to them.Perhaps this was one album too many away from the more classic lineups of Ozzy and Dio and funny enough their next album was with Dio LOL.

deslad
March 17th 2014



271 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

It was a rather enjoyable album, it ended somewhat abruptly though.

Digging: Queen - Live at Wembley 1986

facupm
March 17th 2014



5623 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

i like this one more than dehumanizer

Green Baron
March 17th 2014



11156 Comments


Album name sounds like Burzum

Digging: Chevelle - La Gargola



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