For weeks now, the Black Sabbath promotions department has been reminding fans and the press that the season finale of "CSI" would include a snippet of a song from Black Sabbath’s new album, 13, which comes out June 11.
On Wednesday, Universal Republic Records made good on their word, and fans didn't even have to wait long to see the heavy metal legends in action — or at least lip-syncing the new song. Viewers who tuned in late, figuring Sabbath would be saved for the end of the show, missed the whole thing.
As soon as the "TV14" rating popped up in the top left hand corner of the screen, the band screamed into action. Vocalist Ozzy Osbourne howled; while guitarist Tony Iommi dug into a trademark, lumbering buffalo-sized riff accompanied by Geezer Butler’s booming, meandering bass lines and a steady, mid-paced beat courtesy of Rage Against the Machine’s Brad Wilk.
Then Osbourne started singing: "Regeneration of your cybersonic soul/ Transforming time and space beyond control/ Rise up, resist and be the master of your fate/ Don’t look back before today, tomorrow is too late."
Meanwhile, the show's cast members commented on the performance as part of the script.
"So nice to see Black Sabbath again. Saw them at in ’78 at the Spectrum in Philly," said detective Marc Vann over a piercing guitar solo.
"…Around the same time as I saw the [Grateful] Dead at the Winterland Ballroom," replied Ted Danson, voice dripping with sarcasm. "A little bit of a different vibe."
After Black Sabbath played the tune, which was edited down to just under two minutes, Osbourne appeared at a table doing a mock interview with the journalist the cops were there to see.
"So Ozzy — another incredible gig. The new album is entitled 13 right?” said the reporter, offering the singer an opportunity to plug the album to the "CSI" masses.
"That’s correct," replied the singer. "The album's kind of like a modern sound but there's no denying it's a Black Sabbath album. It’s still got the black Sabbath vibe, you know?”
Apparently, the reporter wasn’t digging for an exclusive because he wrapped after the single quote. "Listen, I think we got it," he said. Then, with his tape recorder off, he added, "I'm sure you don't remember this but you were actually my first interview ever. The Ultimate Sin tour 1986."
"Really? I don't remember?" said Osbourne, showing off a keen case of method acting.
"The concert or me?" replied the reporter.
Osbourne shot back, "I don't remember 1986."
For fans, it was an entertaining way to hear a new snippet from 13; and for Black Sabbath the "CSI" performance was a great vehicle to reach an audience that might not be aware that the band has new music coming out.
"It's a good way of telling people we’re back together, you know?” said Osbourne in a promotional clip for the show.
'For Butler, performing on "CSI" was more fun than most of the promotional gigs he has done. "Ive watched every episode [of "CSI"] since it started, 'cause I like crime stuff, and it was realistic," he said.
Danson was also excited about the show's special guests. "It's my first Black Sabbath concert," he said. "How cool is that?"
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