Ozzy Osbourne – “Blizzard Of Ozz” (1980)

The mind-blowing debut!  Blizzard Of Ozz was originally released in 1980 in the U.K. (1981 in the U.S.A.).  The band was composed of Ozzy on vocals, Randy Rhoads on guitar, Bob Daisley on bass, and Lee Kerslake on drums.  Once the first track I Don’t Know kicks into gear it is obvious that this ain’t no Black Sabbath re-hash!  This is a whole new sound, and a step forward in the evolution of heavy metal (thanks to Rhoads’ articulate, non-blues-based style).  Every single cut is a winner.  Randy Rhoads establishes his legend with his neo-classical, virtuosic performance.

Blizzard Of Ozz features the classic Crazy Train; the menacing opening riff gives way to a bright, major-key verse riff that turns the song on its ear.  Crazy Train is one of those blood-pumping tunes that I wish was playing every time I walked into a room; kind of like my own personal soundtrack.  Goodbye To Romance is the first of many great ballads that Ozzy would deliver in his career.  Let’s give credit to Ozzy for  his ability to conjure a great vocal melody (it is often said that Ozzy came up with the melodies while it was Daisley who penned the lyrics).  Suicide Solution, No Bone Movies, and Steal Away (The Night) are the metal barnstormers.  Mr. Crowley is a dark masterpiece and Revelation (Mother Earth) is the album’s quasi-epic which showcases Rhoads’ classical style.  My score: A+

Notes:

  • In 2002, Blizzard Of Ozz was re-released with the original bass and drum tracks of Daisley and Kerslake erased and replaced by new tracks performed by different musicians.  Avoid this version on principle alone.  I recommend the 1995 remastered version (the one with the large “Ozzy” text going down the right side of the cover).  This version sounds superb.  You can hear every note that bassist Bob Daisley plays.
  • Blizzard Of Ozz is certified 4 x platinum in the States.
  • There is a non-LP track that appeared on the B-side of the Crazy Train single (click here for a pic of the cover).  The song, called You Lookin’ At Me Lookin’ At You, is an excellent tune.  It may be a tad “brighter” than anything on the Blizzard Of Ozz album, but it is extremely catchy and has a great Rhoads solo.

Tracks: I Don’t Know, Crazy Train, Goodbye To Romance, Dee, Suicide Solution, Mr. Crowley, No Bone Movies, Revelation (Mother Earth), Steal Away (The Night)

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