Forbidden is the eighteenth studio album by British heavy metal band Black Sabbath, released in 1995. This also saw the reunion of Black Sabbath’s Tyr-era lineup from 1990, with the return of Neil Murray and Cozy Powell.
The album’s opening track “”The Illusion of Power”” features Ice T of the band Body Count in the bridge, delivering a spoken word part. Body Count band member Ernie C also produced the album.
# Title Lyrics Music Length
1. “”The Illusion of Power”” (featuring Ice T) Tony Martin, Ice T Black Sabbath 4:51
2. “”Get a Grip”” Martin Black Sabbath 3:58
3. “”Can’t Get Close Enough”” Martin Black Sabbath 4:27
4. “”Shaking Off the Chains”” Martin Black Sabbath 4:02
5. “”I Won’t Cry for You”” Martin Black Sabbath 4:47
# Title Lyrics Music Length
6. “”Guilty as Hell”” Martin Black Sabbath 3:27
7. “”Sick and Tired”” Martin Black Sabbath 3:29
8. “”Rusty Angels”” Martin Black Sabbath 5:00
9. “”Forbidden”” Martin Black Sabbath 3:47
10. “”Kiss of Death”” Martin Black Sabbath 6:06
* Tony Martin – vocals
* Tony Iommi – guitars
* Neil Murray – bass
* Cozy Powell – drums
* Geoff Nicholls – keyboards
* Ice T – vocals on “”The Illusion of Power””
The last of five albums Black Sabbath recorded with vocalist Tony Martin, Forbidden, which came out on June 20, 1995, was a polarizing effort both for the band and its fans. Forbidden includes the surging, groove-rocker “Get a Grip,” which features a main riff that sounds remarkably like Aerosmith’s “Love in an Elevator” and the title track, which closes the album, is a doomy combination of creepy acoustic guitar-and-vocals and crashing power chords that sounds more like classic Sabbath than anything else on the record.
Black Sabbath started working on Forbidden in Par Street Studios in Liverpool, England in 1994 and did the crux of the recording in 10 days in Los Angeles.
5.0 out of 5 stars Sabbath still lives!!!,
Sure this album is a bit hard to swallow at first. Rather than using mythological lyrics and a polished sound, they go for the raw and straight forward approach. To be honest, I’m still getting used to some of the lyrics and even the music, but that at least keeps this album fresh. Moreso than on the last few albums you get a sense of tradition, even though at first glance this is a pretty atypical Black Sabbath record. Throughout this tape you can hear shades of various styles throughout the years. At times it captures the exact feel of such albums as Master of Reality, Sabotage, and even Eternal Idol.
In conclusion, DON’T WRITE THIS OFF!!!! Tony Iommi is a guitar god and one of the fathers of heavy metal. Tony Martin is by far a worthy singer of the band, and the rhythm section may not be as original as Bill and Geezer always were, but Cozy and Neil get the job done, and do it well! Sabbath still lives….hell, they won’t ever die. NEVER!
5.0 out of 5 stars Tony Iommi & co. keep the fire burning & the Reaper waiting!,
As most hard & heavy rock fans already know, the so-called “”newer material”” long time bands write never really surpass the classic trend setting albums. It may be better than some of the past albums that were not classified the most recognisable that define the band, but all in all, the new stuff carry’s on what was and attempts to keep the fire going. Some critics say give up the ghost and what’s the point of carrying on? But when it come to Sabbath, Tony Iommi’s desire to carry the torch for Sabbath has shown ultimate dedication to keep the legend of the band’s history alive(& it’s still around)!
Forbidden was not the band’s final bow, but an admirable exit for Tony Martin who did offer some great moments as Sabbath vocalist! After a only few listens, Forbidden definitely had some classic elements along with some interesting raw twists and the controversial give or take rap & rock Ice-T moment.
Illusion of Power – Delivers a rising straight edge hard & heavy raw vibe mixed with only a brief Ice T/Body count rap & rock verse in the middle of the track. IMOP., not so intolerable/no big deal/and not so off the beat & track of rap & hard/heavy rock joining forces. Descent track to start the album. 4 out of 5!
Get A Grip – Another straight edge, hard & heavy rocker/enjoy the riffs & effort here/5 out 5 on this one!
Can’t Get Close Enough – Slowed intro./interesting echoing on the vocals to start then kicks out & jams with much energy! Another decent track/4 out 5 on this!
Shaking Of The Chains – A definite classic, raw sounding, hard & heavy rocker all the way through. Nice riffs/excellent bass/& great drumming by the late Cozy P. 5 out 5!
I Won’t Cry For You – My least favorite on this album. The intro. reminded me of a similar sound from Cross Purposes (‘ 94)/the start of “” When The Hand Rocks The Cradle””. Overall, a descent ballad/hard & heavy style track with some excellent Tony Iommi soling in the middle of the song! For me, 3 & 1/2 out of 5.
Guilty As Hell – Excellent raw heavy riffs here/really enjoy Iommi’s creative vibe on this one/5 out of 5!
Sick & Tired – Fantastic drum intro./great bluesy heavy rocker with some nice keyboards mixed in by Geoff Nichols here. Another 5 out of 5!
Rusty Angels – More basic hard & heavy rocker/moving straight ahead & never rusty throughout except spoken in the lyrics. The song says it all (We may be older & grow tiresome, but we can still go/never say die)! Great track/5 out of 5!
Forbidden – The title track delivers a powerful punch/great heavy rocker straight ahead/5 out of 5!
Kiss Of Death – Like several others who like Forbidden/IMOP., best track on the album. The song has an awesome slow start/rising with passion/then offers a roller-coaster of tempos that make it an epic ride from start to finish! Tony Iommi’s moving/dramatic riffs & solos kick ass on this one/just wish the majority of guitar sound had more heavy vibrato to it/still an excellent change up of hard & heavy rock!Tony Martin’s vocals are great throughout this song and stellar
performing by bassist Neil Murray & Cozy Powell(fantastic drumming up & down the set here)! Also, Geoff Nichols key sounds add greatly to the awesome sounds delivered here/5 out 5!
Forbidden may of been overlooked & underappreciated by some, but overall is an excellent effort by all involved with Black Sabbath during 1995 era! Worth listening to many times/hard & heavy fans of the Sabbath legacy/get this one!
5.0 out of 5 stars A (…) GOOD ALBUM,
I cant understand why so many people didn’t like this album, i mean people should be grateful that Black Sabbath still continued after Ozzy left. Black Sabbath have still produced great albums since Ozzy left and to be honest,Tony Iommi done the right thing continuing to carry the sabbath flag flying high. The album itself is a (…) good efferot, even if ICE T sings in the first song so what it sounds cool and is a very good song to start things, the momentum continues with other great songs such as ,get a grip,Shaking off the chains,and my fav I wont Cry for you a truly beautiful song,not as top as dying for love from cross purposes which I think has been sabbaths most wounderful song so far, and who could forget the powerful kiss of death this song rocks and is the best of the bunch.
5.0 out of 5 stars I don’t care what people say, I love it!!!!,
To tell the truth, it makes me sad to see how so many people can be so hard-headed that they actually turn a masterpiece, like Forbidden, down. Now I’ll admit right now that I’m a fan of all eras of sabbath, yes even those with Ian Gillan and Glenn Hughes. I have to say that this is a Black Sabbath release with lots of heart. When I listen to songs like “”Get A Grip”” and “”Kiss of Death”” I realize that Black Sabbath had reached a certain maturaty in 1995. It’s too bad that shortly after this, Black Sabbath broke up and members Cozy Powell, Tony Marin, and Neil Murray Faded into the hype of reunions and a take over of trends that to this day still haven’t died. Like Cross Purposes, Forbidden is a great release in my opinion. I hope one day maybe the two Tonys will reunites and make at least one more album.
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best!,
Some people says: Black Sabbath is dead without Ozzy. No, It’s FALSE! All albums with the other singers after Ozzy departure in 1978 are very good, exceptional Tony Martin. The strong side of the songs of Black Sabbath before the Reunion is the concept of the songs, middle age, Satan, castle, laws of the true life. In Forbidden, all songs are special; this my quote for all songs: 1)The Illusion Of Power: 9/10 (very good, I like to hear in the song: YOU FEAR ME!) 2)Get A Grip: 9.5/10 (good upbeat song, I never seen the anime video of this song and I want to see it) 3)Can’t Get Close Enough: 9/10 (the beginning is so slow but the entire song is very good) 4)Shaking Off The Chains: 8.5/10 (For me, this song is probably the heaviest song of Black Sabbath) 5)I Won’t Cry For You: 8.5/10 (Good ballad but not superior than Dying For Love of Cross Purposes) 6)Guilty As Hell: 8.5/10 (Good upbeat song, the lyrics are a little bit explicit) 7)Sick And Tired: 8/10 (The worst song of this album, but if you like Sabbath without Ozzy, you can like it) 8)Rusty Angels: 8.5/10 (Very good song, Iommi does a very good guitar solo on this track) 9)Forbidden: 10/10 (The title track is a exceptional song, I’ve heard this song some times on the local radio in 1996) 10)Kiss Of Death: 10+/10 (THE BEST SONG OF THE ALBUM, she start slowly and take a very evil strong beat in the middle) This is my appreciation for FORBIDDEN album of Black Sabbath, 5 stars album. For people who don’t like the other singer than Ozzy, time to move on! Finally, for me Tony Martin is the best Sabbath singer ever. Go to buy all albums with him on vocals, you won’t regret it!
5.0 out of 5 stars Sabbath’s Final Vinyl…,
I bought this in 95 when it came out, and have loved it ever since, it only getting better with age and every time I listen to it. I remember reading the review of it in “”Rolling Stone”” magazine, and they trashed it (the only other review I had read of a Black Sabbath album in RS was a review of “”Mob Rules””, and they ripped that one to shreds), and I remember laughing at the review as I listened to it. Now I see on Amazon (surprisingly) that a LOT of people are p*ssing on this. WHY???
Sure, at the time there seemed to be a bit of Tony Martin ‘overkill’, with “”Cross Purposes””, “”Cross Purposes-Live””, and this coming out all a year apart, kind of creating a Tony Martin cluster f**k, making Black Sabbath fans feel like it was maybe now time to find a new singer (which I feel Iommi did with Glenn Hughes on the awesome “”Eighth Star””, what I feel should have been the next Black Sabbath cd after this one, and then “”Reunion””).
This is great, very refreshing throwback to EARLY Sabbath. Dark, moody, bluesy, and even going back to ‘rapping’. Yes, Black Sabbath were rapping from their very first albums with songs like “”Wicked World””, “”Sleeping Village””, “”Electric Funeral””, “”War Pigs””, “”Into The Void””, et al. So bringing in one of the coolest rap artists in the history of rap (Ice-T) to guest on the opening sinister track, “”The Illusion of Power”” was pure genius. Pure raw, electric/eclectic rock/rap power just like only Sabbath could do it, sounding like the dinosaur creeping out of the boneyard at midnight to take a bite. Wicked and sinister, displaying everything you could want in a Black Sabbath song right from the beginning.
Then the blistering “”Get A Grip”” takes off, ripping like “”Zero the Hero”” (another ‘rap/rock’ number by BS in 83)) and “”Buried Alive”” (yet another ‘rap/rock’ song from BS in 92), riffing fast and mean, with balls to the wall power.
Tracks like “”Shaking Off the Chains””, “”Rusty Angels””, “”Guilty As Hell””, “”Sick and Tired””, and the title track are pure blistering blues hard rock gems from Sabbath at a time when the latest trend was to have a vocalist that sounded like Cookie Monster on acid. The epic “”Kiss of Death”” is possibly the strongest song from Sabbath during the 90’s. And, the ‘ballads’ “”I Won’t Cry for You”” and “”Can’t Get Close Enough To You”” are very akin to stuff from early albums like “”Sabotage”” and “”Technical Ecstasy””.
As much as I love “”Cross Purposes”” (and “”Cross Purposes-Live””), I have a LOT of trouble with Bobby Rondinelli, who just so happened to step back into Sabbath when Cozy left on the “”Forbidden”” tour (which I recommend you seek out “”Black Angels””, a great DVD from this tour). He’s a great drummer, but there’s just something too generic about the way he is microphoned (he had the same problem in Rainbow, another band where he was hired to replace Cozy Powell). Cozy Powell could NEVER be replaced! He played the double-bass drum kit like Geezer Butler played bass guitar (one of a kind!).
Cozy had quit Sabbath mid-way through the “”Forbidden”” tour due to the fact they all knew it was the last Black Sabbath album to fullfill a contract with IRS before the original line-up reunited, and he was rightfully disgusted with all that. Really, the whole band was. But the way they just went into the studio and free-jammed was SO cool! And raw!
But, either way, this is a sizzling rocking album!
5.0 out of 5 stars 15th anniversary! What an awesome album!,
I have no time for people in love with the old days, a lot of the Ozzy stuff was sub-par, its like listening to catchy melodies. This is the Sabbath that remains more interesting and worth listening to. The other Tony, Mr. Martin is such an inspiration to listen to. He’s incredible here, as he is on Cross Purposes, Tyr and Headless.
– KISS – OF – DEATH – A song that is easily one of the most outstanding of their whole catalouge.
All of the other songs except the title track are very enjoyable too, even if they’re not really classics. I won’t cry for you which is a very great emotional performance by Martin.
This was a contractual obligation type album which makes it rather surprising, but they really scored nevertheless.
I really miss hearing music from this era of Sabbath. If not the best era, the most interesting! With Ronnie gone (RIP) I wonder if we’ll get a chance to hear more.
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant!!!,
death to the naysayers… this album rocks……… don’t knock it till you tried it….. the writing and production is superb, so give it a whirl… you won’t be disappointed!
5.0 out of 5 stars Organized Metal by: THE BLACK SABBATH,
“”FORBIDDEN”” By: Black Sabbath was not one of there normal albums with Ozzy. This was done with Tony Martin. When this album just came out in 1995. I did not even dream of buying this because of the fact that Ozzy was not with them and of the rumors that I herd about it. I was listening to the radio and what came on-(Forbidden)?? I did not know who the band was at first until the DJ’s said a few words. What a good way to be when your a Sabbath fan for 10 years and you never herd of such great music by the band you love. I was one of the first people to get this album!! This Albun is very organized compare to other metal and to the old Sabbath as we know. I found this album had a very GREAT backround, with the voice of Tony and the GREAT base / backround… This album has got to be one of my favorites of all(I still listen to it on a daily basis). The name “”Black Sabbath”” has nothing to do with Satanic music, so if your a new fan of Black Sabbath or never herd of them, they are not satanic and I am sure you will enjoy this one!
5.0 out of 5 stars a lot better than what people say it is!!!!!!,
This was the last album with tony martin and it the closes to sounding like the first 4 (ozzy) albums. the band just went in 8 days, played the songs, recorded them, then left. no weeks and months polishing every note. it’s got raw sound, heavy, deep lyrics, great guitar solos. tony martin sings like a normal guy on this album and not so professional, like ozzy does. has melody but nothing too radio friendly (just like the early sabbath albums). tony martin’s lyrics are more down to earth than the other albums. so if you like black sabbath, paranoid, masters of reality, vol.4 than you will like this.