33 years ago today, one of the most important Black Sabbath albums in their career was released. Heaven and Hell was the first album to feature the band’s replacement for Ozzy Osbourne, former Rainbow singer Ronnie James Dio. In fact, it was essentially an album made by Dio and Tony Iommi, as Bill Ward doesn’t remember much about recording the album, and Geezer Butler was absent for much of the album’s writing. While the album’s title track is the standout track of the eight-track album, “Children of the Sea,” “Neon Knights” and “Die Young” are also standouts.
Dio would only record one more album with Black Sabbath (the following year’s Mob Rules) before going on to form his own band, but returned to Sabbath twice more, in 1992 for Dehumanizer and in 2009 for The Devil You Know (as Heaven and Hell). With Ozzy back in Black Sabbath for the first time in years, the focus has certainly been on him in recent weeks, but of the four Dio albums, it’s hard to think of any that had more impact than Heaven and Hell. Check out the title track after the jump.