DVD Reviews

Ozzy Osbourne – Speak of the Devil DVD Review

Released by: Eagle Rock Ent

Release Date: Out Now!!!

Genre: Heavy Metal

Links: http://www.eagle-rock.com/product/EREDV944/Speak+Of+The+Devil

 

 Line Up:

Ozzy Osbourne (vocals)

Don Airey (keyboards)

Tommy Aldridge (drums)

Brad Gillis (guitar)

Rudy Sarzo (bass)

 

Tracklist:

1) Over The Mountain

2) Mr Crowley

3) Crazy Train

4) Revelation (Mother Earth)

5) Steal Away (The Night)

6) Suicide Solution

7) Guitar / Drum Solo

8) Goodbye To Romance

9) I Don’t Know

10) Believer

11) Flying High Again

12) Iron Man

13) Children Of The Grave

14) Paranoid

 

Ozzy Osbourne has been one of the most polarizing heavy metal personalities in our lifetime, from his days in Black Sabbath to his own very successful solo career, his antics and his music have paved the way for the metal movement over the years and has firmly spited his legend as one of the most enigmatic front man of all time. Despite his own personal battles with demons through the years, Ozzy has remained a fan favorite as he is still as much devoted to his craft more now then ever,  even at the renaissance age of 63.

This particular DVD Speak of the Devil live performance focuses on Ozzy and his solo band during the delayed touring for the “Diary of a Madman” tour which had Ozzy getting back on the road to complete missed dates due to the tragic death of Rhandy Rhoads on March 19th, 1982. It’s well documented the hit that Ozzy and the band must of taken when Rhoads a guitar prodigy and someone considered a top notch musical talent, was taken too young. The band succeeded to get back on tour and originally had fill ins for Rhoads from former Gillan guitar player Bernie Tormé who coincidentally only ended up being with the band a few months before he quit the gig all together. Ozzy later recruited Brad Gillis who is featured on this particular performance, you may remember Gillis who went on to play a very formidable role thorough the years with Night Ranger.

This event took place during a recording that was originally set for an MTV performance and it was recorded live from Irvine Meadows, California on June 12th, 1982. The sound here has been remastered in Dolby 5.1 Surround Sound for the first time and captures Osbourne at the top of his game, in a welcoming environment typical of the kind of energy and the way he connected with the crowds, something that made him a staple during the 80’s. I do have to say to be fair to buyers, the beginning and in some parts of the concert sounds like some overdubbing has been done to his vocals, I’m no expert but that’s what I hear which brought down the score a notch for me.

What’s a real treat to watch here is the tremendous video quality which is a step up from the bootlegs of this concert floating around for years, something that is hard to find these days despite the advancement in video restoration from concerts from that era. Secondly you see here why Ozzy’s climb to prominence during the 80’s and the streak of hit records since the celebrated “Blizzard of Oz”. He’s affable connection with the fans is an obvious one as he puts every once of energy into this performance. His vocal pipes are in prime shape and he is able to fly with fluidity and charisma. Alongside Ozzy are Gillis as mentioned earlier, bass thumper extraordinaire Rudy Sarzo, curent Deep Purple keyboard player Don Airey, and legendary drummer Tommy Aldridge.

Yes I know what you’re thinking, but without Randy Rhoads is not the same concert right? Yes you’re quite right as Rhoads was a one of a kind guitar shredder, and there’s not telling to what level he could of reached if he was still alive today, but the fact remains here that Brad Gillis deserves some credit here as he rips through some of the crowd favorites the likes of “Crazy Train” and “Mr. Crowley”. I can’t possibly imagine the amount of indescribable pressure that was on Gillis shoulders, but somehow the whole band sounded great and Brad does a commendable job on lead guitars as he doesn’t try to imitate Randy, but let’s his guitar talents do the talking.

The complete performance brings the eerie and dark feel of Osbourne’s lyrics and music into a background medieval castle setting, with your typical Ozzy led antics, and raw emotion. It should be noted that Airey does a great job of compensating more intricate keys to add to the feel of the show as a whole, and both Sarzo and Aldridge give a glimpse as to what their careers would end up being further down the line when the dust settles as two of the best to ever man their own respected instruments.

Some of the best cuts here are the classic “Flying High Again”, “Suicide Solution”, and of course “I Don’t Know”. Brad Gillis shines in every way possible and he does justice to Rhoads lasting memory in completion of this tour and this performance. Not only do you feel the passion in his guitar playing, but the kinetic energy unleashes into the fret when he rips it up scorching the studio versions of the original songs. What else is there to say about the great Tommy Aldridge? One of this era’s most amazing drummers, his assault on the battery is majestic he and Sarzo make the rhythm section flat out bombastic. Tommy’s drum solo where he beats the drums with his fists is Bonham-esque and something that became his trademark over the years.

The night finishes with a couple of Black Sabbath classic cuts in “Iron Man”, “Children of the Grave” and “Paranoid” to end this suitable sustaining performance of one of the highest in Ozzy’s solo career. The success of the tour was critical to his rising stardom, and made Ozzy a staple here in the states. But it wasn’t without tragedy first, then Ozzy’s antics; you know the whole bat biting fiasco and the Alamo incident, it seemed the Ozz man was living the life but that didn’t come without it’s share of catastrophes (battle with drugs) that have been well documented.  In the end is always good to remember the high times and this particular performance captures Ozzy and company on an all time high, his passion for the fans is never in question, and everybody sounds powerful. A great line up, toppled by great reactions from the crowd at hand, and a restored dose of audio breathes new life into a roller coaster 1982 year for Osbourne. If you’re an Ozzy fan this would make a nice treat to own and see as this wrinkle in time gives you a sneak peek as to what it had been to be flies on the wall of an explosive tour.

 

Written by Denys

Ratings    Denys    8/10

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