Black Sabbath is one of those bands you don’t fuck with. Sure, Ozzy’s kind of become a caricature of himself over the years and I can’t think of one mind blowing Sabbath song since Dio left but the early stuff – paricularly the Ozzy era – is some of the heaviest shit to ever make its way onto an LP. You simply can’t argue that “Into The Void”, “Ironman”, “Snowblind”, and a whole host of other songs seriously kick ass even after all these decades. That stuff became a template that has influenced countless bands over the years. This weekend Roy Mata, Jeff Poppe, John Adams, and Dann Miller take a stab at the epic Sabbath catalog as Lords of the Universe. We tracked down Dann Miller as he was biting off bat heads to talk with us about the band.
FPH – First off you said this was a make-up show. What’s the story there?
Miller - In 2005 we had practiced for a couple months and we booked a show at the Proletariat on New Year’s Eve. Then right before the show happened, Jeff (vocals) got really sick and couldn’t do it. After that we just gave up on it for a while.
FPH – How did the idea come together?
Miller -If I remember correctly, this was Roy’s idea. It’s been a long time, I’m not exactly sure. I know we played a few times without a singer and it had to have been Roy’s doing because I didn’t really know John that well.
FPH – OK some venues have cover .. err I mean Tribute Bands pretty frequently. What makes this one special?
Miller – I think that it’s a fine line with tribute bands between awesome and sad. If you’re only in a tribute band, and your tribute band has a manager, and you’ve ‘fired’ someone in it, it’s probably sad. I’m sure they’re good at playing the songs but there’s no soul. I think when it’s a one time thing, instead of a job, it’s a lot more special. However we are approaching the sad element because of how invested we are into fog machines. I guess to answer your question, what makes this one special is that we have more fog.
FPH – Why do people still give a shit about Black Sabbath after all these years and especially after The Osbournes made Ozzy into a cartoon character of himself?
Miller – I guess the same reason people still love Michael Jackson or any other person who has made great music and turned out to be some weird douche. They succeeded in making music that transcended the fact that they’re ding-dongs.
FPH – Will you touch any of the Dio era like Heaven and Hell or will you be sticking to just the Ozzy era?
Miller – We will only be doing Ozzy era.
FPH – I just realized I didn’t even ask about later Sabbath, is there even a point to going into those versions?
Miller – I personally love all the Ozzy stuff, even up to Never Say Die, but I never listen to any of the stuff past that. I know people swear by the Dio stuff, but I saw Heaven and Hell and it just isn’t my thing. It’s not as offensive as Van Hagar, but it’s just not for me.
FPH – What is your favorite Sabbath song and why?
Miller - As much as I think “Into the Void” is probably the jam of the century, I really think “War Pigs” is one of the best songs ever written.
FPH – Geezer Butler is a great poet. I mean who else would rhyme Masses with Masses? What do you think is Sabbath’s best lyric
Miller – “Symptom of the Universe” has some insane lyrics, but I guess I like hearing a man defend his cocaine usage in “Snowblind”
FPH – OK wrap this up for me. Will faces melt? Brains explode? I mean what kind of awesomeness will transpire at the show?
Miller – Well if the show isn’t shut down 30 minutes in for being too loud, I think faces are prone to melting. I will try to melt my own face off at least.
Lords of the Universe perform Saturday October 29th @ Mango’s with Indian Jewelry, Weird Party, and Christmas
$5 Doors 8pm