Author/journalist Joel McIver interviewed Tony Iommi (BLACK SABBATH, HEAVEN AND HELL) last week for Total Guitar magazine. An excerpt from the chat follows:
Total Guitar: Is it true that HEAVEN AND HELL are writing songs for a new studio album?
Iommi: Yes, we will be. I'm just putting some riff ideas together now. Then Ronnie [James Dio, vocals] will come over to my house and off we go. We're really looking forward to it, I'm interested to see what will come up. When we've got the basic ideas for the songs ready, we'll probably go over to L.A. and rehearse with the other guys.
Total Guitar: You've been asked about the possibility of a new HEAVEN AND HELL album since the project was announced two years ago. Have you just recently made the decision to record again then?
Iommi: Yes. We talked about it on the last part of the tour. In Japan I said to Ronnie, "Are you up for doing a new album, or what?" and everybody seems really keen to do it.
Total Guitar: Presumably this new album pushes any new recordings from the Ozzy Osbourne-led lineup of BLACK SABBATH further into the future?
Iommi: It does, yes. This project will be a lot quicker, because it makes sense to go into a HEAVEN AND HELL album soon after the tour — while it's still remembered, really.
Total Guitar: Ten years ago I bet you wouldn't have predicted that you'd now be recording a new album as HEAVEN AND HELL, right?
Iommi: No! You just never know. It's been like that for our whole lives, to be honest with you. We do things because they seem like a good idea at the time.
Visit www.myfavouritemagazines.co.uk to buy the Total Guitar issue (TG175) containing the entire Tony Iommi interview.
A three-minute video clip containing highlights from HEAVEN AND HELL's October 19, 2007 press conference at the Hard Rock Café in Tokyo — taken during the group's "Ambassadors of Rock" tour of Japan — can be viewed below.