On “Straight to Hell,” the opening track on Ordinary Man, the new album from Ozzy Osbourne, the Prince of Darkness exclaims, “I’ll make you scream/I’ll make you defecate,” before roaring with sinister laughter.
And as silly a phrase to hear in a song as that may be, you have to hand it to the Ozzman. Considering the year he’s had, how can you do anything other than be glad to hear his iconic voice howling along with dirty, grimy heavy metal riffs?
Earlier this week, Osbourne had to cancel his upcoming slate of U.S. tour dates, citing a need to go to Switzerland to undergo medical treatment regarding the laundry list of maladies that have plagued him throughout 2019 and much of ’20.
But, in typical Ozzy Osbourne fashion, he’s still kicking — and Ordinary Man, the first new solo album from the singer since 2010’s Scream, is a welcomed addition to his catalog, especially in light of all of the above. At the same time, the album allows Ozzy to explore some new musical avenues.
The record came about after Osbourne guested on a Post Malone track a year ago, forging a creative partnership with Malone’s producer Andrew Watt (who plays guitar on most of the album’s tracks, as well), and its release remained on the schedule, even as Osbourne had to postpone and cancel tour dates … not to mention going public with his Parkinson’s diagnosis in recent weeks.
One of the more interesting elements of the album is how much fun you can tell Ozzy’s having recording these songs. Longtime guitarist Zakk Wylde isn’t involved this time, with Watt manning most of the lead guitar duties, but several special guests show up — including Slash, Tom Morello and a musical core of drummer Chad Smith and bassist Duff McKagan keeping the rhythm throughout.
It’s a party, basically.
Returning the favor given to him on his chart-topping 2019 hit “Take What You Want,” Post Malone appears on “It’s a Raid,” a hyperactive track with noises and drums crashing about in every direction:
That Ozzy”s making records at all — let alone records as fun as this one — given his health situation shows what a legend he truly is.
Stream the record below, via Spotify: