Tony Iommi

By now you're probably heard. Black Sabbath has announced that they will be reuniting in 2012 to play the eclectic Download festival, manage some kind of world tour, and record an album together for the first time in 33 years.

There are a small handful of bands and artists that get mentioned as the greatest acts in rock and roll history, a sacred pantheon of untouchable musicians who have earned a reverence unlike any other kind of adulation in popular culture.

It occurred to me just after the new year that 2011 marked the 40th anniversary of the release of the Black Sabbath album “Paranoid” in the United States.