First things first, I’m a huge fan of Ozzy Osbourne. Have been since hearing Bark at the Moon on Radio 1’s Roundtable back in 1983. Since then every album has been purchased, many magazine articles have been read, too many videos of songs & interviews have been watched and although I’ve seen him with Black Sabbath, I’m still waiting for my first outing to a solo Ozzy gig. It was supposed to happen in February 2019, but didn’t due to him being ill. Then it was going to February 2020, but again, sadly because of ill health issues, that’s been put on hold until….well who knows!
While he’s been doing the Sabbath thing, his solo career has been put on hold, and he hasn’t released any new material since his 2010 album Scream. If I’m being honest, he hasn’t done a consistent album since 1995’s Ozzmosis, which is a very long time! You could make a good album out of the best tracks from Down to Earth (2001), Black Rain (2007) & Scream (2010).
There had been rumours that while recovering from his various ills, that he had been working on some new material. He lent his voice to the rather good Post Malone track Take What You Want and while doing that he met producer, songwriter and guitarist Andrew Watt. He suggested doing an album, which is going to be Ordinary Man next year. The first fruits of that session is the brilliant Under The Graveyard.
Featuring producer Andrew Watt on guitars, Duff McKagan (Guns N Roses) on bass and Chad Smith (Re Hot Chili Peppers) on drums, the track starts slowly and atmospheric before building around the chorus. The guitars sound amazing, in fact, it’s the best sounding Ozzy song for decades. Some of his stuff sounded muddy over his latter albums, but this is great.
Ozzy says that ‘this album was a gift from my higher power — it is proof to me that you should never give up’ and at nearly 71, he’s sounding good. Lets hope he get fit enough to do the long awaited gigs in the UK.