Founding father band credits producer Rick with getting them back together as they announce first new album in 33 years

Black Sabbath

Confirmed: Sabbath

Black Sabbath say producer Rick Rubin should take the credit for bringing about the band’s reunion.

Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Bill Ward last night confirmed the long-standing rumours were true, and revealed they’ll begin recording a new album, their first in 33 years, just after Christmas.

It’s set for release in autumn 2012 and will tie in with a world tour, marking the first time Sabbath have played together since 2005.

All four members appeared at a press launch at the Whisky A Go Go in Hollywood, presented by Henry Rollins.

Guitarist Iommi said of Rick Rubin, who was also present: “He phoned us every five minutes.”

The producer explained: “We’ve been working on developing material and we’re half-way into the writing process. It’s inspiring hearing what’s coming out.”

Iommi described the experience as “like putting on an old glove” and Osbourne added: “We’ve written seven or eight songs.”

The band will appear at next year’s Download festival at Donington in England to help mark the event’s tenth anniversary.

Sabbath last shared a stage together in 2006 when they were inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. Attempts at making a new album in 1999 stalled in the early stages.

The death of Ronnie James Dio last year brought an end to the alternative Sabbath lineup he’d been fronting under the name Heaven and Hell, leading many to believe a reunion with Osbourne and Ward was only a matter of time.

Iommi was furious when the Birmingham Mail reported his comments about the band working together again in August. He released a statement slamming the story, although he didn’t query its contents. Soon afterwards Osbourne admitted he was finding it difficult to keep quiet about the matter. In February bassist Butler had said there would be no reunion.

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