Former BLACK SABBATH singer Tony Martin recently confirmed that he recorded some demos for the band’s “Dehumanizer” album.
Speaking with Almost Human, Tony says that he was brought in to lay down some demo work for the record during a period when guitarist Tony Iommi and bassist Geezer Butler were having trouble getting along with a returning Ronnie James Dio.
Tony said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “They fired me [prior to the start of the ‘Dehumanizer’ sessions], which, by the way, was a complete surprise. I didn’t see that coming at all. In fact, I was walking out of the door to go to rehearsals for the next album, and the phone rang just as I was leaving the door. And my manager [was on the other end of the line], and he said, ‘You’d better sit down, kid.’ I [was, like], ‘Go on. What?’ And he said, ‘They don’t want your services anymore.’ [I said], ‘What? You’re kidding me.’ I just didn’t see that coming at all. So, wow, okay. I was just so shocked by that, I didn’t know what to say, do or anything.’ But within weeks I was back — it was four, five, six weeks maybe, something like that. I got a call from Tony Iommi saying, ‘This isn’t going very well [with] Dio.’ I said, ‘Oh, really?’ And he said, ‘No. Can you come back?’ And I said, ‘No. I can’t come back. I’ve already started doing my solo stuff and I’ve moved on.’ [And he said], ‘Okay. Okay.’ So then a few months went by, and he called me again. And he said, ‘Are you sure you can’t come back? It’s really not working.’ So they invited me to go to the studio when they were recording the stuff, so I went down there. And I did try to get some melodies and stuff, but they were short of time, as usual. And I said, ‘Look, if I’m gonna do this, I need to rewrite this whole thing. I need to take it away and sit with it and work it out.’ They said, ‘We don’t have the time for that.’ [So I said], ‘I’m gonna have to leave it with you. Probably the best thing to do is just continue with Dio, and then we’ll talk afterwards.’ So even through the Dio period, there was connections, and I was still talking to Tony. In fact, I went to the show [they played] in my hometown with Dio. Actually, Dio wasn’t pleased at all to see me there. ‘Cause, obviously, Tony Iommi had invited me. And, of course, Dio comes offstage and I’m still backstage. He was not impressed with that at all. So there was a connection going through the ‘Dehumanizer’ thing pretty much most of the way through — not in a constant way, but on and off.”
When asked if he did any studio recordings for the album, Martin replied: “Yeah, I did try. I just couldn’t get anything that was gonna sound better than what they’d done [with Dio]. And I have to make it sound like Tony Martin. There’s no point in asking me to do it if you don’t want me to sound like me. So at that point I was kind of thinking, ‘I don’t really wanna just keep copying people’s stuff.’ I did try and I did put some demos down. But I doubt very much — in fact, I’m 99 percent certain there’s nothing left of [those recordings]. I’ve got a couple of brief cassette copies of something I tried, but it’s really horrible quality — just a cassette thing. It just reminds me of the day. Yeah, I did give it a go. But I don’t think I could better, really, what they’d done. So we sort of moved on, really.”
Watch the full interview at this location.
Martin’s new solo album, “Thorns”, will arrive on January 14 via Battlegod Productions and Dark Star Records.