Hear Tony Iommi's acoustic-driven ode to Birmingham Cathedral

Although it's unlikely we'll hear any more music from Black Sabbath before their farewell gigs at Birmingham's Genting Arena in February, Tony Iommi has released a new song of its own - although it's probably not what you'd expect: an ode to his hometown's cathedral.

How Good It Is showcases an acoustic arrangement accompanied by the Birmingham Cathedral choir, but features a few tasty electric licks from the godfather of heavy metal, too.

A collaboration with Tony's friend, the Dean of Birmingham, the Very Reverend Catherine Ogle, the five-minute composition features lyrics inspired by Psalm 133, celebrating "peace, harmony and the Cathedral's role in the heart of the city" - Sabbath Bloody Sabbath it ain't.

It's just a little bit different to Sabbath!

"It's just a little bit different to Sabbath!" Tony laughs.

"We've done instrumental work before with orchestras and it's something I enjoy doing. It's completely different from any of the heavier stuff.

"This is a completely new piece of music and I'm really pleased with it."

For anyone surprised by the collaboration, Tony also took the opportunity to clear up a common misconception about Sabbath.

"People used to think we were Satanists but we weren't. The songs were the opposite and all about the dangers of Black Magic and Satanism," he explains.

"The closest we came was Black Magic chocolates!"

You can hear the track above and download it from Birmingham Cathedral.

Michael Astley-Brown

Mike is Editor-in-Chief of GuitarWorld.com, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism, and has spent the past decade writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as a decade-and-a-half performing in bands of variable genre (and quality). In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.