Today’s the day that Marvel fans have been waiting for (at least since the release of last year’s The Avengers) – Iron Man 3 is now in theaters.  The main cast members are back – Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark, Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts and Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan, however, Favreau, who directed the first two installments, isn’t directing this one. And Don Cheadle is back  as Col. James Rhodes for the second time since taking over for Terrence Howard, who played the role in the first movie.

In honor of the occasion, we thought we’d point out three covers of Black Sabbath‘s classic “Iron Man.” Sabbath’s original was used in the credits of the first film (the second film’s soundtrack was dominated by AC/DC), and Tony Stark was actually wearing a Black Sabbath t-shirt in a big scene in The Avengers. Of course you can’t beat the original, from the band’s classic second album, 1970’s Paranoid.

But here are three others that aren’t so bad:

This band has a long history with Sabbath: they opened for singer Ozzy Osbourne in 1986, and are, of course huge fans of the legendary metal group. Bassist Robert Trujillo played in Ozzy’s backing band before joining Metallica (replacing Jason Newstead, who initially replaced Trujillo in Ozzy’s band). So, when Black Sabbath was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame in 2006 and declined to perform, it was no surprise that Metallica were called on to pay tribute. Below, watch Metallica’s two song set (they perform “Hole In The Sky” followed by “Iron Man,” which starts at about 3:40).


The Cardigans
Metallica covering Sabbath is less of a shocker than say Swedish twee indie-pop group the Cardigans taking on the song. Sure, you wouldn’t expect the band to cover “Iron Man,” but they made the classic their own. Slowing things down, singer Nina Persson gets us into the groove right from the start, cooing, “I am Iron Man.” It’s the most adorable Ozzy impression you’ll ever hear.

P.S. 22 in New York City
How young is too young to rock? That’s a trick question: you’re never too young! And here’s proof: the most famous elementary-school chorus on the planet, from New York City’s P.S. 22 (learn more about these kids here) rocked the metal classic accompanied only by their teacher/piano player.


Want to catch Black Sabbath performing the song in the flesh?  You may be in luck: they are touring this summer, starting July 25 in Houston. And, of course, their new album 13, comes out June 11.

Bonus track! Cheadle’s character Rhodes donned his own suit of armor in Iron Man 2, and this time around he has his own code-name, “Iron Patriot.” But in the comic book, his handle was “War Machine.” Here, then, is the classic KISS song of the same name:


— Brian Ives, 


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