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Black Label Society: box sets, hot sauce, and the secret plan to reform Black Sabbath

Black Label Society
(Image credit: Justin Reich)

In their 20-plus-year history, Black Label Society have released 10 studio albums, which have been gathered in a vinyl box set titled None More Black. Talking to Classic Rock, guitarist and band leader Zakk Wylde explains the reasoning behind the box set. 

Never one to dwell on past glories, Wylde is already plotting the next phase in the band’s career. Outside BLS, Wylde has been Ozzy Osbourne’s principal guitarist for nearly 35 years, and also fronts Zakk Sabbath, a tribute band to the original Black Sabbath line-up.

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Why do a Black Label Society box set now? 

I’m setting up a college fund for my son. So I reckon there will be enough sales of this to my relatives and eight friends to put some extra money into this! It includes two bonus discs as well: The Song Remains Not The Same II and Nuns And Roaches: Tasty Little Bastards

Why did you include these?

I hate the idea of putting unreleased tracks on any reissued album – what a waste. I’d rather do a whole album’s worth of BLS songs which have been reimagined, or of cover versions. That’s what these two albums represent. 

What’s next for Black Label Society? 

We’re aiming to have a new album released in November. Recording-wise it’s a long way down the line. We have a tour booked in America from October second to the end of November, and another for the Christmas period. Then we wanna head around the world in 2022.

You didn’t play on Ozzy’s last album Ordinary Man. Was that disappointing? 

Not at all. I thought he and Andrew Watt did a great job. And I’m not on the new one either. Again it’s Ozz and Andrew. I understand why I’m not in the studio. Ozz once said to me that he didn’t want to be the lead singer in Black Label Society: “You have your own thing now, so go to it.” 

I don’t have to be involved in everything Ozz does. I’ll always be there for him and Sharon. If they call now and ask me to go over to feed their dogs for three days… I’m there. 

Would you expect to be in his touring band for 2022? 

Yes I will be. Ozz is getting himself back healthy, and then we’ll be back out on the road. 

What prompted you to want to do Zakk Sabbath? 

Contractually, the original Black Sabbath can never tour again. So we have this long-term plan for Zakk Sabbath. Firstly we get Ozz involved, and call it Zakk Sabbath Featuring Ozzy. Then Geezer comes in, and it’s Zakk Sabbath Featuring Ozzy And Geezer. Thirdly we get Tony in, and have Zakk Sabbath Featuring Ozzy, Geezer And Tony Iommi. 

Finally, Bill comes on board and you have Zakk Sabbath Featuring The Original Members Of Black Sabbath! Nobody can claim it’s breaking any contract, because this is Zakk Sabbath not Black Sabbath. That way, if those guys run short of money, here’s a clever way they can play together again live. Genius, right? 

Any ideas for another brand of hot sauces, following your Berserker range in 2011? 

I’m always working on this. My aim is to make your colon explode with what’s coming next. 

None More Black is available now via Entertainment One.

Malcolm Dome had an illustrious and celebrated career which stretched back to working for Record Mirror magazine in the late 70s and Metal Fury in the early 80s before joining Kerrang! at its launch in 1981. His first book, Encyclopedia Metallica, published in 1981, may have been the inspiration for the name of a certain band formed that same year. Dome is also credited with inventing the term "thrash metal" while writing about the Anthrax song Metal Thrashing Mad in 1984. He would later become a founding member of RAW rock magazine in 1988.

In the early 90s, Malcolm Dome was the Editor of Metal Forces magazine, and also involved in the horror film magazine Terror, before returning to Kerrang! for a spell. With the launch of Classic Rock magazine in 1998 he became involved with that title, sister magazine Metal Hammer, and was a contributor to Prog magazine since its inception in 2009. He was actively involved in Total Rock Radio, which launched as Rock Radio Network in 1997, changing its name to Total Rock in 2000. In 2014 he joined the TeamRock online team as Archive Editor, uploading stories from all of our print titles and helping lay the foundation for what became Louder.

Dome was the author of many books on a host of bands from AC/DC to Led Zeppelin and Metallica, some of which he co-wrote with Prog Editor Jerry Ewing.