Rondellus

Sabbatum: Medieval Tribute to Black Sabbath

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This tribute to Black Sabbath by the early music band Rondellus is certainly different and undoubtedly high concept, but doesn't necessarily work. What makes Black Sabbath Black Sabbath is punishing riffs, pounding drums, sludgy bass and Ozzy howling. There is a medieval vibe to many of Sabbath's tunes, but it all comes down to rock and metal. Metalers have appropriated medieval imagery which has always gone perfectly with the music's epic sound and Dungeons & Dragons inspirations, but actual medieval music was simple, meditative, one might even say, boring stuff. Rondellus play a lute, fiddle and harp on these songs and chant the lyrics in Latin, so songs like "War Pigs" and "A National Acrobat" lose all their fury and sound like something the Dalai Lama might get into. Black Sabbath fans are unlikely to dig music as extremely mellow as this, though the album could serve as okay background music for yoga or a massage.

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