It’s easy to let this week’s DLC announcement slip by in all the excitement of Rock Band 3 – that’s probably why Harmonix announced it early.
Welcome to Rock Band, Ozzy Osbourne.
Three songs are from his latest album Scream (releasing the week following the DLC pack) with the other three being some of his greatest hits. I’ll go to the new stuff first, particularly as this is my first time listening to it. Sadly I couldn’t find “Diggin’ Me Down” anywhere , but the other two were pretty easy to locate.
“Let Me Hear You Scream” is the first single release from the album. Listening to it right now, I have to say I’m not much a fan. It’s lacking just about everything that makes it an Ozzy song and sounds like it could’ve come from anyone. I also can’t get over the feeling that he’s trying too hard and it’s like, dude, you’re OZZY OSBOURNE. The guitar solo lacked all the power of a Randy Rhodes or Zakk Wylde solo and fell flat. I mean, this sounds like something that major networks would put behind their promos for major sporting events. I’ll pass, and hope the other two tracks fare better.
Alright, “Soul Sucker”, what’ve you got? Oh there we go, that’s much more like it. It still sounds a little too clean, but this song is much heavier. In fact, jeez, this may be one of the heaviest songs I’ve heard from him. I’m still not too terribly impressed by whoever his new guitarist is, but this is a much better effort all around. It definitely catches me better from the start and I think it could really grow on me after a few listens.
All right, that out of the way let’s get to the older stuff, starting with “Crazy Babies”. In truth this one was never a favourite – vocally I think it’s just okay. (those background “ahhhh”s always sound a little off). Where this song really shines is the guitar. Zakk Wylde is out on full display, with a great riff and a solo that is everything you’d expect.
“I Don’t Wanna Stop” is a more recent release from his 2007 Black Rain album and is one of the better songs on it. The chorus is has a great flow and is almost anthemic. I almost want to say that the solo is a little out of place in this one, but as is usually the case it’s fast and hard then it’s done. Still overall a great song that’s probably the most accessible and fun out of the pack.
Then there’s “No More Tears” which is, as far as I’m concerned, an utter no-brainer. This song is a classic, bottom line, with every instrument on full display. Driving bass riff, standout drum rhythm, blistering guitar and sharp vocals.
I’m very hopeful this is just the beginning with Ozzy. “Crazy Train” coming in RB3 thrilled me, but there’s still so much great stuff out there. (And yeah, okay, it’s technically a Lita Ford song, but doesn’t harmonies in RB3 pretty much demand “Close My Eyes Forever”?)