Black Sabbath announce 'The End' tour
NEW YORK - Agence France-Presse
Tony Iommi (L), Ozzy Osbourne (C) and Geezer Butler (R) of Black Sabbath pose in the press room after winning Best Metal Performance for 'God is Dead?' during the 56th Grammy Awards at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California, January 26, 2014. AFP photoBlack Sabbath, who pioneered heavy metal more than four decades ago, on Sept. 3 announced a final tour and vowed it would be the band's last.
The English rockers, known for their thunderous guitars and dark subject matter, said that "The End" tour would feature three of the band's four longtime members including flamboyant frontman Ozzy Osbourne.
"It promises to surpass all previous tours with their most mesmerizing production ever. When the tour concludes, it will truly be the end," said a voiceover on a video announcement on the band's website.
The band announced 24 dates for the tour, which will start on January 20 in Omaha, Nebraska in the US Midwest, a hotbed for heavy metal fans.
The tour will cover the United States, including New York's Madison Square Garden, as well as Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
The final date -- the real "The End" -- is scheduled for April 30 in the southern New Zealand city of Dunedin.
The tour does not feature any shows in Europe, including the band's native city of Birmingham, England.
Osbourne has pursued a successful solo career and lives in Los Angeles, where his family was featured a decade ago on the MTV reality series "The Osbournes."
Guitarist Tony Iommi has stayed in England and in recent years struggled with cancer, a factor that has clouded previous chatter about a new Black Sabbath tour.
Black Sabbath went on an 84-date reunion tour from 2012 to 2014 that opened in Birmingham and closed in London's Hyde Park.
The extensive tour brought out original bassist and lyricist Geezer Butler, who will again play in "The End" shows.
But longtime drummer Bill Ward was not listed to participate in the final tour. Ward also did not play on the 2012-2014 tour or on the band's last album, the 2013 release "13," amid a feud with Osbourne.
Black Sabbath started out with a self-titled first album in 1970.
The band took a root of the American blues but brought in a heavier guitar sound as well as often macabre themes.
"Iron Man," one of the band's most identifiable songs, tells of a man who travels in time and wreaks revenge on humanity after being turned into steel.
Black Sabbath and Osbourne's later solo work often alarmed Christian groups who saw dangerous or Satanic messages in the music.