By: Jesse Striewski
I was initially hesitant when I first heard Ozzy Osbourne would be releasing another album so soon after 2020’s Ordinary Man, feeling it might be on the “rushed” side. But it doesn’t take a genius to recognize greatness when they hear it, and that’s exactly what’s achieved with (most of) Patient Number 9.
From the moment the title track/first single kicks into high gear, it’s apparent the Prince of Darkness has still got it, crooning through seven minutes of epic proportions. From then on, the Ozzman channels his best John Lennon impression (“One of Those Days,” “God Only Knows”) to echoing back to his days in Black Sabbath (“Evil Shuffle,” “No Escape From Now,” Degradation Rules” – the latter two each featuring former Sabbath band mate and godfather of the metal guitar, Tony Iommi). But it’s when Ozzy dives deep that’s most interesting; “Nothing Feels Right” and “Dead and Gone” might just go down as a couple of my personal favorites here.
Aside from Iommi, there’s an array of other star musicians that guest here, including longtime axeman to Ozzy’s solo band Zakk Wylde, and legendary guitarists like Eric Claption and Jeff Beck. Bass parts are rounded out by Metallica’s Robert Trujillo and Duff McKagan of Guns N’ Roses, while drum duties are handled by Chad Smith of the Red Hot Chili Peppers and late Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins in what may now be his final recorded performance.
But getting back to the music, Patient Number 9 delivers on all accounts as both a rock record, and an Ozzy album, filled with heavy menancing riffs, and plenty of catchy hooks. Surprisingly, there’s not even a lot of filler found here, either. At seventy-four years old, Ozzy shows he’s still got it after all these years, and I’m just thankful to still be able to witness it.
Rating: 4/5 Stars