5 September 2013

Ozzy Osbourne - Bark At The Moon

Well, well, well. The BIG "Double-O"! The man on the worlds longest comedown just keeps on going, be it trying to wrestle quadbikes, star in a (popular but ultimately ill-advised) reality TV show (which doesn't so much as tarnish his legacy but ties it up, rapes it at knifepoint then douses it in petrol and sets it on fire) or even try to make decent music again, all under the watchful eye of his manager/wife/ballbuster, Sharon Osbourne, a woman who is an insufferable prick. Or so I have heard. But before all the showbiz bullshit, Ozzy made records too. Sometimes, he even made good ones. This is one of them although it's not without it's flaws. Everyone knows the ups and downs the man himself has been through as well as the funny quotes and stories so we're going to skip them and just talk about the music.

This is his third solo album, released in 1983 and it continued the same path that both 'Blizzard Of Ozz' and 'Diary Of A Madman' set out on - unashamed hard rock, although a slight pop feel was starting to creep into the music, this would be fully realised on the next album, 'The Ultimate Sin'. Also, this was the first album without guitarist Randy Rhodes who had died in a plane crash the year before. The man doing the guitar duties on this is Jake E. Lee, former Ratt and Rough Cutt member. He does an admiral job and isn't too bad at all. Backed up by bassist Bob Daisley and drummer Tommy Aldridge, they set about making an album that although is good, you could probably live without. It just sounds like it's sticking to the pervious albums formula (stadium anthems, ballads) which seemingly dated over three years. When Ozzy first went solo, the songs sounded vibrant and fresh, coming at you like he had a point to prove after being sacked by Black Sabbath (His last two albums with Sabbath were also AWFUL). This sounds like a man who has settled into a rut so quickly, the rut has an ass-groove. The 80's were a particularly mental time for Ozzy away from the recording studio, but this is no excuse. The album has some fine songs, but the other material doesn't stack up at all.

Ozzy would go onto make a much, much better album than this (more on that later) before settling back into a musical rut, seemingly trading off his reputaion and past glories whilst staying relevant with a travelling festival. Whether or not he'll ever record anything decent again is another thing. Hopefully he will, but - to quote one of his songs, "I don't know"...

5/10 - It could've been a bit better.

Chris J.

This album is available on iTunes.

Amazon. Buy it.
Spotify. Listen to it.
(Sorry about the poor quality video, it was the best I could find...)

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