British heavy metal band Black Sabbath Vertigo Records, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

10 most iconic Black Sabbath songs

Choosing only 10 Black Sabbath songs can be an incredibly difficult task. With a career spanning over four decades and a vast discography filled with influential and iconic tracks, it's hard to narrow down their impressive catalogue to just a handful of songs.  From their early bluesy sound to their pioneering work in heavy metal and their more experimental later years Black Sabbath has left an indelible mark on music history, making the task of choosing just 10 songs an almost impossible feat, but here is our list.

"Iron Man" (1970, Paranoid):
One of the band's most recognizable songs, "Iron Man" features Tony Iommi's iconic guitar riff and Ozzy Osbourne's powerful vocals. It's a classic example of Black Sabbath's heavy, doom-laden sound, and has been covered by numerous artists including Metallica and Alice in Chains.

"Paranoid" (1970, Paranoid): The title track of Black Sabbath's second album, "Paranoid" is another one of their most well-known songs. It's a fast-paced, riff-heavy rocker with a memorable chorus and has been covered by bands like Megadeth and Green Day.

"War Pigs" (1970, Paranoid): With its anti-war lyrics and epic, cinematic feel "War Pigs" is one of Black Sabbath's most enduring songs. The song has been covered by a wide range of artists from Faith No More to Cake.

"N.I.B." (1970 Black Sabbath): The song title was initially rumored to be "Nativity in Black" or "Name in Blood". However, in a 1992 interview, Geezer Butler revealed that the title simply referred to drummer Bill Ward's beard, which was shaped like the tip of a fountain pen (also called "nib" in English). When Geezer couldn't think of a title for the song, he named it "Nib" after Bill's beard and added periods to make it more "intriguing", resulting "N.I.B". This slow-burning bluesy track features some of Tony Iommi's most soulful guitar work. It's been covered by bands like Primus and Opeth.

"Sweet Leaf" (1971 Master of Reality): A tribute to the joys of smoking marijuana "Sweet Leaf" is a groovy fuzzed-out anthem that showcases Black Sabbath's lighter, more playful side. It's been covered by bands like Soundgarden and Corrosion of Conformity.

"Children of the Grave" (1971, Master of Reality): A heavy, propulsive track with a powerful anti-establishment message, "Children of the Grave" is another classic Black Sabbath song. It's been covered by bands like White Zombie and Guns N' Roses.

"Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" (1973, Sabbath Bloody Sabbath): The title track of Black Sabbath's fifth album, "Sabbath Bloody Sabbath" is a complex, multi-part epic that showcases the band's progressive side. It's been covered by bands like Anthrax and Korn.

"Symptom of the Universe" (1975, Sabotage): A hard-hitting, riff-heavy track with a funky almost proto-thrash feel "Symptom of the Universe" is a fan favorite. It's been covered by bands like Sepultura and Cathedral.

"Heaven and Hell" (1980, Heaven and Hell): The title track of Black Sabbath's first album with Ronnie James Dio on vocals, "Heaven and Hell" is a majestic, anthemic song with a soaring chorus. It's been covered by bands like Killswitch Engage and W.A.S.P.

"The Mob Rules" (1981, Mob Rules): The title track of Black Sabbath's second album with Ronnie James Dio, "The Mob Rules" is a fast-paced high-energy track with a memorable riff and a catchy chorus. It's been covered by bands like Adrenaline Mob and Fozzy.

What do you think of our list? Does it match yours or do you think we've left out any more important songs?