DEP Sessions is an unearthed field recording by a left-handed English guitarist who once punched out an NME editor, invented Add N to X by inserting metal fingers in Lita Ford’s body, and created a variant of dub that substituted single-note guitar/bass unison riffs for minor-key organ-guitar triads. When his former vocalists fled his Von Trier-like manipulations for MTV or D&D Dogville, Iommi went on expanding stylistically while eclipsing the contexts of his predecessors, over under sideways down—”It Falls Through Me” is like if Billy Gibbons were in the Yardbirds. The train keeps a-rollin’ in “Don’t You Tell Me,” where the click-track “cowbell” appears at 2:06. Iommi should be harsher on his rhythm sections—the one he had in the ’70s was fucking incredible. Glenn Hughes (who also just put out another Iommi collaboration, called Fused) “wore chains before Slayer and Venom” and “had a voice deeper than Will from Mortician,” to quote Anal Cunt’s “If You Don’t Like the Village People, You’re Fucking Gay.” “They’re gonna make a movie about the life I led,” Hughes sings on “Fine,” as if Can’t Stop the Music wasn’t enough. Unless I’m thinking of somebody else with the same name, which is the kind of shoddy research that makes people disparage the cognitive capacities of stoner-rock fans.
Being Stavros Albini’s apparent favorite “doom-jazz” band would make Philadelphia’s Stinking Lizavetta the feta cheesesteak to Norman Whitfield’s vanilla fudge, but SL’s SST fairies wear Shrapnel Records boots. However, “I Denounce the Government” and “Sketches of Pain” imply Voivod warming up the rehearsal room with a Dischord jam. Then again what the fuck do I know, I’m waiting for Albini to produce Godspeed! You Black Emperor and Jay’s Journal is the only book I’ve ever finished. That’s where I read about the 11 (23?) inlaid crosses in Tony Iommi’s guitar neck. Unless that was in Guitar Player. “Over the Edge” would fit the movie of the same name’s soundtrack better than Fu Manchu’s, especially if the director had been Italian or something.
Tony Iommi plays Ozzfest at the PNC Bank Arts Center July 26 and 27.