It's accepted fact that Black Sabbath are the most definitive and influential act in heavy metal history — the singular first metal band. As such, many, many artists have bowed to their mastery (including Henry Rollins, who sings the praises of his favorite Sabbath album in this video) and many, many bands have covered their songs many, many times throughout the years (including on multiple tribute albums). Here are 10 of the best live renditions of Black Sabbath songs.
1. Type O Negative – "Paranoid"
Seeing as Type O Negative are the band that brought heavy metal doom to goth rock, it's no surprise that they were huge Sabbath fans. And while their best-known Sabbath cover is "Black Sabbath," from the original '94 Nativity in Black tribute album, a few years earlier (it was tacked on as a bonus cut to 1992's "live" album The Origin of the Feces) they took on the Sab's biker metal classic "Paranoid," turning into a very Type O-esque dirge. "This used to be a Black Sabbath song ... til we got a hold of it," says frontman Peter Steele, announcing the song at this 1991 live show.
2. Faith No More – "War Pigs"
Faith No More covered this epic Sab tune on their 1989 breakthrough album The Real Thing, demonstrating that even while they were becoming famous for funk-influenced rap metal, they knew their roots.
3. Pantera – "Planet Caravan"
Pantera doing a Sabbath song isn't so far-fetched. The fact that they chose a mellow, trippy one was more unexpected. The Cowboys From Hell covered the song on 1994's Far Beyond Driven; here they are doing it live in 1996.
4. Stone Sour with Shawn "Clown" Crahan and Chris Fehn – "Children of the Grave"
By year five, the Revolver Golden Gods were well-known for bringing metal icons together for once-in-a-lifetime collaborations, so the bar was set high for Stone Sour when they hit the stage in 2013. Corey Taylor and Co. stepped up to the plate with a tribute to heavy-metal forefathers Black Sabbath, in the form of a memorable take on "Children of the Grave," assisted by Taylor's bandmates in Slipknot, Shawn "Clown" Crahan and Chris Fehn — the first and, to this date, only such crossover between the two bands.
5. Melvins – "Into the Void"
On which Buzz Osborne and Co. take one of Sabbath's doomiest, most stonerific riffs and manage to up the sludge factor by roughly one thousand percent.
6. Metallica – "Iron Man"/"Paranoid"
Metallica teamed up with the Ozzman himself at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 25th anniversary concert in New York City to bang out these Sabbath classics. Two of the biggest names in metal, playing two of the biggest metal songs ever.
7. Sepultura – "Symptom of the Universe"
Sepultura covered this Sabbath classic for the Nativity in Black tribute record, but they had been performing it live for years at that point—even, amazingly, on Brazilian television.
8. H.I.M. – "Hand of Doom"
Sabbath has started playing "Hand of Doom" again on their final tour after a long hiatus. But Finnish goth-metal band H.I.M. have been doing it onstage for years, as evidenced by this video.
9. White Zombie – "Children of the Grave"
White Zombie covered "Children of the Grave" for Nativity in Black, and it also became a staple of their live show. It's probably one of the Sab's most groove-heavy tunes, making it perfect fodder for a Zombie makeover.
10. Ministry with Kirk Hammett – "Supernaut"
Al Jourgensen first covered "Supernaut" in 1990 with his side project 1000 Homo DJs, and he later did it with Ministry on their Cover Up album. Here he is performing the song onstage with Ministry in 1992, with a helping hand from Metallica's Kirk Hammett.