Blizzard of Ozz
Review score: 77%
Review Date: January 2013
Reviewer: Paul Jack
Source: Rock Hard Reviews
No rock / metal site is complete without including hard rock legend and Godfather of Heavy Metal Ozzy Osbourne. So, dear reader, picture this....
The year is 1980, and Blizzard of Ozz marks Ozzy's bounce back from his departure from Black Sabbath. It's an album which would go on to be so successful that it would achieve quad platinum. Seems like a perfect place to begin writing about Ozzy's post-Sabbath career.
Like so many classic metal albums, Blizzard of Ozz has been remastered and re-released with several bonus tracks, providing added value for those of us who still buy retail music. There's been a bone of contention about the remastering, in that different versions of Blizzard feature re-recorded bass and drums for reasons I won't go into here. Let it suffice that I reckon these are great rock songs and well worth listening to. For those who do care, the original line-up the older, mid nineties edition can still be hunted down.
Let's pick out a few classic tracks for your playlist:
Kicking in with an amazing guitar riff, Crazy Train is one of the better known songs from the album. Guitarist Randy Rhoads sounds simply amazing here; his flawless solos are beyond reproach.
When you listen, remember, these were Cold War days. Crazy Train is an appeal to the world and the people in power to stop the madness and try to all get along. And what's wrong with that?
The song has been covered many, many times and is instantly recognisable. Actually it makes for a cool retro ring tone these days. Oh, and if you've got an open mind and a sense of humour, you might want to check out the so called 'Ozzy / Madonna techno remix' easily found by searching online.
Right from my first listen to this number it was blatantly apparent to me that it was an anti-drinking song, with lyrics clearing about the evils of booze (a theme Ozzy would later pick up in 'The Demon Alcohol'). I read somewhere Ozzy citing the alcohol related death of Bon Scott as a source for this song.
However, this anti alcohol theme was not so apparent to everyone , it would seem. If you are interested, search online for details about the court case and make your own mind up. Musically Suicide Solution is a decent melodic rock number, and you should give it a listen if only to see what all the fuss was about.
Ah, what is white and symbolic? A horse, of course. A song about the long dead occultist Aleister Crowley. I wonder if someone had been reading Crowley’s books? The song lyrics are kinda fun, with Ozzy describing the druggie occultist’s lifestyle as tragic. It’s a good, catchy hard rock song. Go on, playlist it! Shame I have not heard this one playing in the TV series Supernatural; it would have been a great theme tune for one of the characters!
If you want to hear a short sample of awesome classical guitarist Randy Roads showing off his talent then give this acoustic instrumental a go. Caution - not a rock song, (shock, horror). The song title is a reference to Randy’s mother, by the way.
Steal Away (The Night)
The final track of the original album release, this fast paced hard rock song features swirling high pitched guitars woven around Ozzy’s sharp singing. Melodic, listenable and energetic. Cheerful even.
Depicts Ozzy Osbourne posing for what might at first glance be taken for a scene from a Dennis Wheatley novel.
Nowadays we might call this melodic rock, but this is classic Ozzy rising up out of the Sabbath days and showing that he's still got it. Blizzard of Ozz is a well crafted metal album full of energy and passion. There's good stuff here, and despite Blizzard sounding like a product of its time, some tracks have aged well. Blizzard of Ozz has a place in rock / metal history as Ozzy's comeback album, and is definitely worth a listen. So there.
Classic Track List
- I Don't Know
- Crazy Train
- Goodbye to Romance
- Suicide Solution
- Mr Crowley
- No Bone Movies
- Revelation (Mother Earth)
- Steal Away (The Night)
(Blizzard of Ozz is also available with a juicy assortment of bonus tracks is you shop around!)