Paranoid is the second studio album by English heavy metal band Black Sabbath. Released in September 1970, the album was the only one by the band to top the UK Albums Chart, and as a result is commonly identified as the band's magnum opus. Paranoid has been certified four times platinum by the RIAA and contains some of the band's best-known signature songs, including the title track, "Iron Man" and "War Pigs".
After the release of their debut album in February 1970, Black Sabbath returned to the studio in June that year, again with producer Rodger Bain, to record their second album. The album was recorded at Regent Sound Studios and Island Studios in London, England. The album's eponymous single "Paranoid" was written in the studio at the last minute to fulfill the record label's request for a single.
As drummer Bill Ward explains: "We didn't have enough songs for the album, and Tony just played the "Paranoid" guitar lick and that was it. It took twenty, twenty-five minutes from top to bottom."
The song "Iron Man" was originally entitled "Iron Bloke". Upon hearing the main guitar riff for the first time, Ozzy Osbourne remarked that it sounded "like a big iron bloke walking around".