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Black Sabbath's Paranoid 

When: Sat., May 19, 9 p.m. 2012
Price: $20

A brief list of descriptors oft attributed to Black Sabbath's second studio album, Paranoid, includes all of the following: "Classic." "Essential." "Evocative." "Magnum opus.""Tour de force.""Greatest of all time." In this case, critics and metal-heads alike seem to have reached a consensus, and the puffery generally holds up more than four decades later. That makes Paranoid a suitable album for UnderCover, a San Francisco-based quarterly series of canonical album remakes. For this iteration, fifty musicians reinterpreted the songs on Paranoid in a variety of idioms. To understand just how far they might have ventured from the source material, one need only look at the participants. Funk bassist Uriah Duffy teamed up with Afropunk band The Memorials and Jeremy Von Epp of BlackGates to retool the title track, which has one of the most recognizable motifs in rock history. The extremely flamboyant 35-piece brass and drum outfit, Extra Action Marching Band, will tackle "War Pigs." Worldish folk group Charming Hostess will try its hand at "Iron Man." Anyone who caught any of UnderCover's previous projects, which included remakes of Nick Drake's Pink Moon and The Pixies' Doolittle, can attest to the level of scholarship and sheer inventiveness behind each of them. Paranoid premieres Saturday, May 19, at The Independent (628 Divisadero St., San Francisco). 9 p.m., $20. UnderCoverPresents.com

— Rachel Swan

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