Compact disc reviewed by: Chris Hammond
Geezer Butler- The very best of Geezer Butler (2021)
Label: BMG Rights Management (UK) Ltd
Style: Heavy Metal, Hard Rock
Geezer Butler is a founding member of Black Sabbath but is also very successful away from the band with his solo projects. In 1995 under the name g/z/r, Butler releases an album featuring Burton C. Bell of Fear Factory on vocals. This album is entitled ‘Plastic Planet’ and is an instant nineties classic metal album. Butler follows this album up with 1997’s ‘Black Science’ and the band changes its name to Geezer. Butler, again working with drummer Deen Castronovo and guitarist Pedro Howse, as he did on ‘Plastic Planet’. Burton C. Bell is replaced on vocals by the unknown Clark Brown. The third album in the Geezer trilogy, 2005’s ‘Ohmwork’, changes things up musically. Gone is the industrial sound and a more well-round heavy metal/Nu-metal sound can be heard on the album.
All these different styles can be experienced on The very best of Geezer Butler a 17-track album with songs selected by no other than Geezer Butler. Interested parties can buy a more comprehensive Geezer Butler Best of release with the 4-cd box set “Manipulations Of The Mind”. This version of The Best of features the albums ‘Plastic Planet’ (feat. Burton C. Bell of Fear Factory) (1995), ‘Black Science’ (1997), and ‘Ohmwork’ (2005), with a bonus 4th disc of rare and largely unreleased material.
The Very Best of collection (single cd) features many different sounds over many decades, there really is no flow to the album. That being said there’s not a weak song amongst the 17-songs included here. Songs like “Drive Boy, Shooting” encapsulate the sound of the industrial/metal genre fully. It’s also a blast from the past to hear Burton C. Bell’s vocals alongside Butler’s undeniable bass chords. “Man in a suitcase” has a very Sabbath sound to it and again the vocals are just great.
Songs like “The Invisible” and “Catatonic Eclipse” showcase the band’s instrumental talents. Other songs like “I believe” take a more acoustic tone and sound like the band Days of The New. The Nu-metal style is evident on songs like “Prisoner 103” and the very Korn-esque “Area Code 51”
Whatever the song, whatever the genre-style fans of Geezer (g/z/r) won’t be disappointed. There’s something here for everyone and it’s great to hear all the styles this project went through over the years in one collection. I honestly forgot how great this project was and how well-crafted each album and song is.
Geezer Butler remains a treasure of a bass player. He’s put his stamp of approval on this release and helps to keep himself relevant away from the Black Sabbath machine. Not everyone who is/was part of Black Sabbath can say that.