I admit, when it comes to Ozzy, I’m a little slappy for the guy. Perhaps my favorite artist. I picked up a copy of the brand new album the day it was released, from the guys at Rock City Music Company in Livonia. I had it on the turntable all weekend. It’s not as good as the new Megadeth, but there are definitely some highlights. With the number of legendary guests, there are songs not to be missed.
The following is a review according to the order on my vinyl…..
I’m Immortal – Mike McCready – Ripper… loved it the first time I heard it. Killer phased guitar solo. Great way to open the album. A short and catchy jam to set the tone for the record.
Patient number 9 – You’ve probably heard this one on WRIF. I was very excited for this album after hearing this song. The power chords around the hook got me right away! Excellent trail to accommodate people. Jeff Beck is masterful on this track. The lyrics also fit well with the madman himself.
Parasite – This song doesn’t do much to me. I guess I’ll start with crochet. Not a fan. It sounds crazy, but I think it has to do with the tone of the chorus. Just a little weird. This song features Zakk Wylde. Zakk does what he does best during the solo, rip! Possibly my least favorite track on the album.
No Escape From Now – Ozzy in great shape. Dark, methodical, diabolical. Maybe it’s because he has the help of Black Sabbath legend Tony Iommi. It’s a Sabbath song!
One Of These Days – This is the song that Ozzy said might cause some controversy. “One of those days when I don’t believe in Jesus,” he sings throughout the hook. The great guitarist Eric Clapton brings his classic style to this song in a slightly creamy atmosphere. Quality song with classic sound.
A Thousand Shades – A bit slower song with Jeff Beck. For some reason this reminds me of something from Blizzard or Journal. I can’t put my finger on it. Maybe it’s Randy Rhoads’ style of play, I don’t know. Closest thing to a ballad on record so far.
Mr. Darkness – I like this song much better than the other one with Zakk on guitars. A very classic Sabbath feel for soloing. Oh, there are TWO solos, lots of shredding on this one. This song has its ups and downs, sort of the most “epic” track on the album. I’m not crazy about the end of the song. I think there could have been a more crescendo ending.
Nothing Feels Right – Another track with Zakk on guitars. Decent song, not spectacular. Maybe because of the keyboard tone throughout the song, it reminds me of a song that could have been on Bark At The Moon. Zakk’s solo shines on this song, with even a hint of Randy Rhoads.
Evil Shuffle – It begins like a song called Evil Shuffle should, with thick chords reminiscent of the start of the Sabbath. Another track helped by Zakk Wylde. The song is ok, I’m not crazy about the lyrics. They seem a bit cheesy around Ozzy’s image of a madman. I don’t think they work like the title track.
Decay Rules – Another track with Tony Iommi. I love the harmonica in this one. I’ve always been a fan of The Wizard because of that. This song reminds me of the sister of No Bone Movies from Blizzard of Ozz. “Asphyxiation….Masturbation, Degradation Rules” Iommi, of course, rips this one off with his signature thick tone.
Dead And Gone – This one strikes me as another throwback to BATM. Not a bad song, not great.
God Only Knows – Another song that’s ok, in my book. Fairly solid solo. I love the layered backing vocals behind Ozzy.
Darkside Blues – Just a throwaway song to end the album with some production stuff, with a bluesy twist. The shortest song by far.
All in all, a solid balance sheet. Total admission, it would take a lot for me not to be a fan of an Ozzy album. I’ll give it a 7.5 out of 10. Worth having on vinyl.