'Long-lost' debut album from Jazz Sabbath to be finally released after 50 years

Jazz Sabbath album cover
(Image credit: Blacklake Records)

2020's release schedule just got a whole lot more interesting, with news breaking of the release of the "long-lost" debut album by Jazz Sabbath. The album, which features recordings of familiar songs like Faries Wear Boots, Iron Man and Children Of The Grave, is due to make its way into the nation's record stores on April 10. Available to pre-order now, it has quite the back story.

A statement released by the band's label reads, "Formed in 1968, Jazz Sabbath were considered by many to be at the forefront of the new jazz movement coming out of England at the time. The eagerly awaited debut album, scheduled for release on Friday 13th February 1970, was destined never to be released. Until now. 

"The album was cancelled when news broke that founding member and pianist Milton Keanes was hospitalised with a massive heart attack which left him fighting for his life. The record company took the decision to shelve the album and cancel the scheduled release out of compassion and the financial uncertainty of releasing a debut album from a band without its musical leader. 

"When Milton was finally released from hospital in September 1970, he found out that a band from Birmingham, conveniently called ‘Black Sabbath’, had since released two albums containing metal versions of what he claims were his songs. 

"Milton tried to contact his record label, Rusty Bedsprings Records, only to find out it didn’t exist anymore and the label owner was in jail. All recalled Jazz Sabbath albums had been destroyed when the warehouse burned down in June 1970; which turned out to be a case of insurance fraud by the label owner, leaving only a few bootleg tapes of Jazz Sabbath’s live performances between 1968 and 1969 as proof of existence. 

"The album masters were said to be lost in the fire, but were actually misplaced and gathered dust in the basement vaults of the recording studio for many years, destined never to see the light of day. 

"In late 2019, nearly 50 years later, the man who bought the building where the recording studio had been located (in order to turn it into a vegan pet shop) found the master recording tapes, which contained the original masters from the 1969 recording sessions and the slides containing the original album cover. 

"These tapes have now been remixed and will finally be heard. The album will prove that the heavy metal band worshipped by millions around the world are in fact nothing more than musical charlatans, thieving the music from a bedridden, hospitalised genius."

While this magnificent, controversial creation won't be out until April, fans can sate their desire for Jazz Sabbath by watching a short documentary about the band, which is released today.

Narrated by actor Robert "Jesus of Nazareth" Powell, it features artists like former Whitesnake bassist Neil Murray, Faith No More drummer Mile Bordin, Dream Theater keyboardist Jordan Rudess and Royal Blood drummer Ben Thatcher waxing lyrical about the greatness of the "real" Sabbath.

Disclaimer: Milton Keanes is actually Adam Wakeman, long-time keyboard and guitar player for Black Sabbath and Ozzy Osbourne. A Jazz Sabbath tour is planned later in 2020.

Jazz Sabbath tracklist

1. Fairies Wear Boots
2. Evil Woman
3. Rat Salad
4. Iron Man
5. Hand Of Doom
6. Changes
7. Children Of The Grave

Jazz Sabbath album cover

(Image credit: Blacklake Records)
Fraser Lewry

Online Editor at Louder/Classic Rock magazine since 2014. 38 years in music industry, online for 25. Also bylines for: Metal Hammer, Prog Magazine, The Word Magazine, The Guardian, The New Statesman, Saga, Music365. Former Head of Music at Xfm Radio, A&R at Fiction Records, early blogger, ex-roadie, published author. Once appeared in a Cure video dressed as a cowboy, and thinks any situation can be improved by the introduction of cats. Favourite Serbian trumpeter: Dejan Petrović.