Two decades on from the band’s inception, Black Label Society soared to Number 4 on the Billboard Current Albums chart with their tenth studio album, Grimmest Hits (2018). It was the third consecutive Top 5 debut for BLS, right behind Catacombs of the Black Vatican (2014) and Order of the Black (2010). Grimmest Hits opened at Number 1 on both the Hard Music Albums and Independent Albums charts, as well.
Equal parts adrenalized fury and earnest emotion the BLS songbook plays a unique role in the lives of the band’s fans. The group cranks out anthems to turn up in revelry and tragedy, songs with which to celebrate and songs with which to mourn.
Mighty missives like “Stillborn,” “Bleed for Me,” “Funeral Bell,” “In This River,” “Concrete Jungle,” “Parade of the Dead,” “My Dying Time,” and “Room of Nightmares” have amassed millions of downloads, streams, and video views. They are the soundtracks to jubilant evenings that descend into bewildering mornings.
While members of esteemed rock and metal institutions like Alice In Chains, Metallica, Type O Negative, Clutch, Danzig, and Megadeth have passed through the band’s ranks, Black Label Society has consistently been defined by Wylde’s unmistakable voice and signature guitar sound and the steady rumble of bassist John DeServio. Bluesy guitarist Dario Lorina and powerhouse drummer Jeff Fabb joined Wylde and DeServio in the BLS crusade back in 2013 and 2012, respectively.
An energized beast and consummate showman, Black Label Society’s frontman bears his heart and soul with unchained passion, in both crushingly heavy blues-rock barnstormers and acoustic and/or piano-driven laments alike. The band are vigilant keepers of the flame. Zakk’s signature Les Paul Bullseye guitar hangs in the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame, his infamous leather bellbottoms in L.A.’s Grammy Museum, his handprints on Hollywood’s Rock Walk of Fame. He wrote the 2013 Major League Baseball theme for ESPN. He’s graced the cover of every guitar mag.
A lifelong disciple of Black Sabbath and the longest serving guitar-shredder for the Ozzman himself, Wylde co-wrote modern Ozzy Osbourne classics like “No More Tears,” “Mama I’m Coming Home,” “Road to Nowhere,” and “Miracle Man.” Together with Ozzy bassist Blasko and ex-Queens Of The Stone Age drummer Joey Castillo, Wylde pays faithful tribute to the forefathers of metal as frontman for Zakk Sabbath.
Wylde, who was still in his teens when he got his demo tape into Ozzy’s hands, was part of No More Tears (the biggest selling album of the legendary singer’s solo career), the double-platinum Ozzmosis, and a Best Metal Performance Grammy win.
A one-off record with Pride & Glory in 1994 was followed by Zakk’s first solo album, Book of Shadows (1996). Sonic Brew introduced Black Label Society to the world, igniting a molten momentum that barely slowed for the arrival of Book of Shadows II (2016), 20 years after its predecessor. It’s beautifully serendipitous that Sonic Brew – 20th Anniversary Blend 5.99 – 5.19 now marks a similar landmark anniversary.