Jason Molina - The Black Sabbath Covers [7'']
When Jason Molina took on another artist's song, he willed his own universe into it, his own
personal and artistic mythology. Be it Conway Twitty or Townes Van Zandt, their blues were
infused with Molina's own entrancing blues. This pair of newly discovered, home-recorded
Black Sabbath covers is no different. Molina, a through-and-through fan of metal (seek out his
high school metal band the Spineriders' album if you haven't yet) peels back the sinister and
stoned elements of Sabbath, zeroing in on the loneliness and brooding. He takes ''Solitude,''
from 1971's unfuckwithable Master of Reality - and one of Sabbath's more mystical, nearproggy songs - and doubles down on the title. Molina extracts Ozzy Osbourne's gorgeously
cooed vocal performance and transforms it into a high and lonesome sound, a desert campfire
howler. And on his cover of ''Snowblind,'' from 1972's Vol. 4, it becomes obvious what a guitar
hero Sabbath's Tony Iommi was for Molina. Molina seemed to pull from Iommi's odd, simple
fingerings and tunings throughout his catalogue: from his first album (known informally as ''the
black album'') to Magnolia Electric Co.'s Josephine. Molina's brief acoustic cover dials back the
bombast, but you can surely connect ''Snowblind'''s chord progressions with Molina's own on
the black album and Axxess & Ace. Recorded in the midwest in the late '90s, during Molina's
multi-season run of batting 1.000, these two intimate songs are a bittersweet artifact of one of
the Rust Belt's titan songwriters.
Note to buyer: Do not attempt to play Side B of this 7'' release. Side B is a gorgeous etching of a
black ram by artist Will Schaff. If you do attempt to play the etching on Side B it will sound
- Limited edition 7'' includes two never-before-heard covers of Black Sabbath songs on Side A,
and a hand-drawn etching of a ram on Side B
- Original cover art and etching by William Schaff
- The Black Sabbath Covers is a followup to Jason Molina's The Townes Van Zandt Covers 7'',
released for Record Store Day 2016
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