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Listen to a Live Version of Black Sabbath’s ‘Iron Man’ With Alternate Lyrics

Vertigo
Vertigo

When a band reaches the final studio version of a song, it has undergone numerous different edits, playing around with riffing nuances, drum fills, song structures, vocal patterns and lyrics. Fans are rarely treated to such rough cuts of iconic tracks, never knowing the transformation that took place. With Black Sabbath‘s Super Deluxe edition reissue of the classic Paranoid, however, fans can hear a live version of the iconic “Iron Man” (heard below) with alternate lyrics and a bit of a different structure.

The recording was culled from an August, 1970 gig in Montreux, Switzerland, pre-dating the Sept. 18 release of Paranoid. What’s surprising is how much Ozzy Osbourne deviates from the album version of “Iron Man” adding in extra words in the memorable “He was turned to steel…” verse. While these are slight but noticeable differences, one of the biggest variations comes when Osbourne sings, “Now he’s standing there / Iron Man don’t you dare / For he wants you, too / Iron Man, I love you.”

Fans might recall a similar instance from a different take on “War Pigs” which contained drastically different lyrics than the ones presented on the Paranoid album. The band performed “Walpurgis,” an early, more occult-like version of “War Pigs,” for a ‘Peel Session’ on legendary radio host John Peel’s program in late April of 1970. Some of the differing lyrics were “Witches gathered at black masses / Bodies burning in red ashes / On the hill the church in ruin / In the scene of evil doings / It’s a place for all bad sinners / Watch them eating dead rat’s innards / I guess it’s the same wherever you may go / Oh lord yeah!

The Paranoid super deluxe edition from Rhino Records comes with the 2012 remaster of the original album, a rare 1974 quad mix of the album folded down to stereo, as well as two concerts from 1970 performed at Montreux, Switzerland and Brussels, Belgium. Also included is a four-disc set with a hardbound book, additional liner notes with interviews from all four original members, rare photos, memorabilia, a poster and a reprint of the tour program sold on the trek in support of the record.

Black Sabbath recently performed their last-ever U.S. show and are winding down their farewell tour. The band will close the book forever on Feb. 4 in Birmingham, England where they got their start so many decades ago.

Black Sabbath, “Iron Man” With Alternate Lyrics

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