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GEEZER BUTLER On RICK RUBIN’s Work On BLACK SABBATH’s Final Album: “He Certainly Wouldn’t Work With Me Or TONY Ever Again”


Black Sabbath‘s 2013 album, 13, marked the band’s last studio work, featuring Ozzy Osbourne on vocals for the first time since 1978’s Never Say Die! Despite the excitement surrounding this reunion, bassist Geezer Butler has (once again) expressed his dissatisfaction with producer Rick Rubin.

Reflecting on the production process in a conversation with BraveWords, Geezer lamented the drawn-out nature of creating 13. He highlighted the loss of spontaneity and authentic feel, comparing it unfavorably to the band’s earlier work.

“I always think you just lose the spontaneity and the feel of stuff. But when we did the 13 album, that took forever. And some of it was great doing it, and some of it not so good,” he remarked (as transcribed by Ultimate Guitar).

Geezer went on to explain that the lengthy production time ultimately made the music feel forced, lacking the rawness that characterized their ’70s albums and even the Heaven and Hell album, which he thoroughly enjoyed creating.

“It just didn’t have the same feeling like the old ’70s album or even Heaven and Hell album. I loved doing Heaven and Hell. But yeah, I think the longer you take over something, it becomes forced in the end, and you sort of lose the initial rawness and the feeling of the music.”

When asked about the possibility of working with Rick Rubin again, Geezer‘s response was unequivocal: “Nope. He certainly wouldn’t work with me ever again. Or Tony. Tony was incredibly disappointed with him. In fact, Tony took some of the master tapes and redid them.”

Geezer also shared his fondness for Black Sabbath‘s earlier albums, which were produced by the relatively obscure Rodger Bain. He appreciated the simplicity and live feel of those records, free from excessive overdubs: “I always liked the first three albums because it’s so basic and you can’t really go wrong with it. We played them as a live gig in the studio kind of thing. So there was no ridiculous overdubs and all that kind of stuff.”

While Rick Rubin’s production style has led to numerous successful albums, it clearly didn’t resonate with the members of Black Sabbath during the making of 13.

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