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The legendary Ozzy Osbourne returns with his 8th studio album and first of the new millennium, Down To Earth. This would’ve been a good thing if the Blizzard had got his right hand man Zakk Wylde to write some of the damn songs. Instead Ozzy had a bunch of well known rock/pop musicians write the album and he ignored the killer material that Wylde had submitted to him (Some of them would later appear on his BLS 1919 Eternal album). What a great idea that was! Let’s have a group of guys who don’t know jack shit about Metal tell the Godfather of Metal what to sing.
This album is not all garbage though. Some of the songs end up being pretty good but overall this one is full of songs that are either mediocre or just plain bad.
Gets Me Through - Opener and first single is a decent rocker highlighted by a nice keyboard intro and two amazing Zakk Wylde guitar solos.
Facing Hell - One of the better songs on the album. Again the guitar work is the highlight but Ozzy‘s voice sounds pretty good on this one.
Dreamer - A respectable Ozzman ballad but not as good as previous ballads such as Mama I’m Coming Home or Revelation (Mother Earth).
No Easy Way Out - Not bad. Not great either. Ozzy’s vocals again sound really good.
That I Never Had - Great guitar intro and solid playing through the song. That’s about it.
You Know (Part 1) - I love this short little acoustic song. Biggest problem with it is it’s just over a minute longer.
Junkie - Boring. Again Zakk’s solo is the only good part.
Running Out of Time - A half decent ballad.
Black Illusion - Average. Like on most of the album the guitar work is the highlight.
Alive - My favorite song on the album. It’s still nothing special though. Ozzy gives another surprisingly good performance.
Can You Hear Them? - Nothing special. The military drums sound cool.
So Ozzy releases a mediocre album. It’s not the first time and I wouldn’t be shocked if it’s not the last time. I just hope that next time he let’s his band write some of the material. Mike Bordin and Zakk Wylde are much better songwriters than the guys who wrote this one. Maybe Ozzy will realize that when he goes in the studio to do a new album but I highly doubt he will.