Thursday, October 18, 2012

Ozzy Osbourne - Ozzmosis

I remember when Ozzy retired after the No More Tears album. He said he was done with the industry and walked away after releasing the biggest album of his life, 1991's No More Tears. Four years later he couldn't handle sitting around all day being a retired old man, so he released Ozzmosis.

Ozzmosis was not a mistake, or a bad release with only a killer opening track. It's an album full of songs that reflected a time that was off for Hard Rock and Heavy Metal, and this album belongs in the first catagory.

This is not a Metal album, let me be very clear about that. There are only few songs on this album that are Metal in any way, and the lead off track, Perry Mason, is the most Metal of them all. I also have to say that a song based on an old crime drama is a surprise. Even more surprising is the song is really good.

I Just Want You is the first ballad on the album. It's not completely a ballad, but it's meant as one of those pretty songs. I'm presonally a fan of skipping this song. The song Ghost Behind My Eyes is one of those songs that has me shaking my head and asking, "Ozzy, why? Why do you keep releasing these silly love songs?" I know there's supposed to be something romantic about these spawns of Satan, but the truth is that this song shows that Ozzy really isn't that much of a bad guy after all.

Thunder Underground grabbed my attention right away, when I first heard it. It's thick, heavy, and sounds like the title would suggest. I shouldn't be surprised either, and when I first saw the writing credits it all made sense. Ozzy, Zakk Wylde and Geezer Butler are the three responsible for this creature.

I should mention that Geezer is the bassist for the whole album. This was Zakk's last album with Ozzy, as he was leaving to go play with Guns N' Roses, which never ended up happening, and in return was the last straw for Slash, and that's when he left G'N'R officially. I'm okay with all of that though. Black Label Society was releasing shitloads of better songs and more often than Ozzy was, and Slash went on to much better as well. Like I said, it was a weird time for the music I loved.

It's time for another balladesque song with See You On The Other Side. It's not all slow and boring, but it's mushy and sappy. It's not exactly exciting either, but It's still better than the first ballad this album treats us to. However, this song runs way too long. It's just over six minutes long, and could have easily been cut off around the 4:30 marker.

Tomorrow has a bit of a Grungey/Alternative sound to it, which is decent enough, but I'm just thankful that this song starts showing this album has some real balls. It has a bit of a mellow lead in verse, then it moves to a heavy second verse which has Ozzy doing his Godfather of Metal thing, then there's the chorus which turns into some type of church sermon complete with an ominus organ of fear. This isn't a fast song, and it has a slower slicker vibe to it, but it's a great vibe. This has been a constant fave of mine, in regards to this album. In the grand scheme of Ozzy, it's still pretty decent.

After that it's on to Denial, which is not as cool as the last track, but still has some flair to it. However, there a certain feel to this song, that makes it seem like they weren't even trying. It's got the vibe of a decent song, but the sound of something stock.

So, when a song has Steve Vai as a co writer I'm expecting to be blown away, sadly that's not the case so much with My Little Man. It's more like John Lennon's Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy). Not what I really want to hear Ozzy kicking out, but musically this song is really cool. This sounds like it could have been Ozzy covering a Beatles tune, right down to the sitar sounding guitar.

My Jekyll Doesn't Hide is really cool, and has a great sound to it. Not a surprise since it's another Geezer Butler co-written song. To be honest, two of the three best songs on this album, and the only ones I regularly listen to in any way, have his name on them. This isn't an overly strong song, but it has a wicked cool vibe, and that's good enough for me.

I really hate that this album ends with Old L.A. Tonight. It's a pretty enough song, and I do like it, but it's the third ballad on the album. What the fuck!? Then it's capping off an album that's supposed to be Ozzy's big return. Just not cool. However, the song itself is really cool. There's also a point where Ozzy is singing "I'm falling to pieces, pieces" and I swear he's singing "I'm fallin' 'nto reeces pieces".

All in all I do enjoy this album, but I don't think Ozzy's releaseds one solid album since No More Tears. This album set the standard for what would become his normal album pattern. One song on the album would be a single, that sounds fantastic, then there would be two or three other good album cuts. The rest would be ballads or stock material, and one of those ballads has a good chance of being a single too.

Half of this album is pretty decent, or at least decent enough for me to suggest checking out the Ozzmosis. The other half is decent enough filler to not be overly upset about buying this album unheard when it first came out. In retrospect four ballad-like songs on one Metal album is not cool, and is the only reason I would say buyer beware.

6/10 - content

8/10 - production

10/10 - personal bias

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