In a recent interview with Guitarist magazine, BLACK SABBATH guitar legend Tony Iommi was asked about his plans to record and release new music. He responded: "Well, that's the million-dollar question. I've got loads of stuff. I keep saying to Ralph [Baker], my manager, 'I want to put it down properly,' but the engineer I've used for years, Mike Exeter, has gone on to do other things… I'd like to put some stuff down, but it won't be a touring band. Actually, Brian May [QUEEN] came over and I gave him four or five CDs of riffs, and he's going, 'You've got to do an album with these, just put them out like that.' I said, 'No, I don't want to do that. I'm going to do them properly.'"
Tony went on to say that he would like get some of the other musicians he admires involved. "I sort of did it with the 'Iommi' album in 2000," he explained. "I had Dave Grohl, Billy Corgan and all sorts of people on it. Another two embarrassing things that I didn't go for was one where they said, 'This chap wants to do something. Eminem.' 'Who the bloody hell is Eminem?' I didn't know, and I went, 'Oh, no.' And Kid Rock. So I turned a few people down that became quite big later, but I hadn't the faintest idea. I'd tried to do it before with Planty [Robert Plant] and a few others, but it was so hard because of management and all that. But the last one, they really wanted to do it, and I enjoyed playing with different people."
In February 2017, SABBATH finished "The End" tour in Birmingham, closing out the quartet's groundbreaking 49-year career.
"The End" was SABBATH's last tour because Iommi, who was diagnosed with cancer in 2012 and is currently in remission, can no longer travel for extended amounts of time.
SABBATH wrote and recorded its 2013 reunion album, "13", and toured it all over the world while Iommi was going through treatment for his illness, with the guitarist having to fly back to England every six weeks.
The original lineup of SABBATH came together in 1969 with Iommi, singer Ozzy Osbourne, bassist Geezer Butler and drummer Bill Ward. That lineup recorded and toured through 1978, and periodically reformed through the '90s and 2000s for live work.
They regrouped again in late 2011 for a new album and tour, although Ward dropped out after a few months over financial issues. SABBATH has used Ozzy's regular touring drummer Tommy Clufetos since then for live work. RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE's Brad Wilk laid down the drum tracks on "13", which came out in June 2013.