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Review: Ozzy Osbourne - Bark at the Moon
Ozzy Osbourne
Bark at the Moon

Label: CBS
Year released: 1983
Duration: 38:37
Tracks: 8
Genre: Heavy Metal


Review online: February 21, 2021
Reviewed by: MetalMike
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Rated 4.52/5 (90.48%) (21 Votes)

Bark at the Moon is the third solo record from original Black Sabbath singer Ozzy Osbourne and the first studio album after the tragic death of guitarist Randy Rhoads. Ozzy once again showed an uncanny ability to find relatively unknown but talented guitarists, this time elevating Jake E. Lee to the spotlight alongside the Ozzman after brief stints in RATT, Rough Cutt and other L.A. groups. And, once again, the partnership would prove capable of creating metal magic.

Perhaps not as well respected as Blizzard of Ozz or Diary of a Madman, Bark at the Moon is nevertheless excellent and may actually be the most consistent of the three. Lee was a true '80s guitarist with a more classic metal sound and style vs. Rhoads who clearly had cut his teeth on '70s heavy rock and masters like Hendrix. Lee's guitar tone and lead work on Bark at the Moon is excellent and fans who were worried there would be a drop off without Rhoads were soon assuaged by Lee's deft playing. "Bark at the Moon" is the obvious "hit" from the album and is even more fondly remembered for the accompanying video that featured Ozzy as a werewolf. Ah, the '80s. The album also features plenty of classic Ozzy songs like "Now You See It, Now You Don't," "Center of Eternity," Slow Down," and "Waiting for Darkness." All are characterized by excellent riffs and the kind of semi-occult lyrics Ozzy was famous for, especially early in his career. "Rock and Roll Rebel" is the epitome of this combination of riffs and vocals and should have been the second single after "Bark at the Moon." Listening to it, you can easily picture Ozzy up on stage singing, clapping, and exhorting the crowd to shout the chorus, smiling all the while. The decision to release "So Tired," a ballad that with its harmonized backing vocals and strings sounds like E.L.O., is probably the biggest reason this album isn't as huge in Ozzy's catalog as it should be. "So Tired" absolutely killed the album's momentum. "You're No Different" is a bit of an ironic title as it is a song that sounds different from the rest on Bark at the Moon and more in the direction of the hard rock Ozzy would embrace beginning with his next album, The Ultimate Sin, marking a move in a more commercial direction, away from metal. Other than these last couple of songs, the rest of the album is fantastic.

Most metal fans probably own Blizzard of Ozz and/or Diary of a Madman, with good reason, but skipping Bark at the Moon is a huge mistake. It is every bit as good, and in some ways better, than Ozzy's first two releases and deserves a place in your collection.

More about Ozzy Osbourne...
Review: Black Rain (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Review: Blizzard of Ozz (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Diary of a Madman (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
Review: Down To Earth (reviewed by Pierre Bégin)
Review: Live and Loud (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Review: Live in Quebec City (reviewed by Pierre Bégin)
Review: Ordinary Man (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Review: Randy Rhoads Tribute (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
Review: Scream (reviewed by Hermer Arroyo)
Review: Speak of the Devil (reviewed by Pierre Bégin)
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