Ozzy Osbourne new album Patient Number 9 (2022) - Review

Ozzy Osbourne new album Patient Number 9 (2022) – Review

One of the main events of this year, for sure, is the release of the new Ozzy Osbourne album. The great and terrible, the king of darkness, but at the same time very nice and talented Ozzy, just two years after the release of his last and in my opinion very unsuccessful album Ordinary Man, pleases his fans with a new record, which is called Patient Number 9. One can only wonder how, despite the pandemic, quite serious health problems and the age of 73, Ozzy has such capacity for work. And as we know, just four days after the release of the Ordinary Man album, he announced that he was starting to work on new material. All in all, on September, 9th, the new, thirteenth album (we can say, in a way, it’s a jubilee one) was released. For those who were disappointed with its predecessor, I assure you, Patient Number 9 should make up for the shortcomings of the last album.

I have to be honest, but at first I didn’t expect much from this record. Especially the list of the main actors and the production remained almost the same as on the last album, namely a group of young people, including the producer and Ozzy co-writer Andrew Watt, 31, who by the way used to work even with Justin Bieber, a good rise in the career ladder: from Justin Bieber to Ozzy Osbourne, and also a 32-year-old songwriter Ali Tamposi, who appeared on the last album as well. But at the same time, Robert Trujillo and a number of other famous musicians are listed as co-writers, which is already good.

“Patient Number 9” was recorded during the pandemic and at a time of many concerns about Osbourne’s health. Over the past few years Ozzy had suffered COVID-19, several surgeries and other illnesses. This has limited his ability to give concerts, but he has still appeared on stage a few times, including with Tony Iommi at the closing ceremony of the recent Commonwealth Games in Black Sabbath’s hometown of Birmingham.

The new album features a huge number of guest friends of Ozzy, and also some really great musicians. The drummer is Chad Smith, drummer for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and the late Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins. The bass parts were recorded by Robert Trujillo of Metallica and Duff McKagan of Guns N’ Roses.

Special mention should be made of the number and composition of the present guitarists: Tony Iommi from Black Sabbath, Zakk Wylde, Jeff Beck from The Yardbirds, Mike McCready from Pearl Jam and Eric Clapton. Besides that, it was planned to invite also Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin. That’s such a stellar line-up. Besides that producer Andrew Watt was one of the guitarists.

Ozzy Osbourne new album Patient Number 9 (2022) - Review

Apparently in honor of the thirteenth album, it features thirteen tracks, totaling just over an hour in length. The plastic opens with the title track Patient Number 9, the longest track on the album featuring guitar virtuoso Jeff Beck. It is the first single from the album, released June 24 and features a music video directed by comic book legend Todd McFarlane. The song was written by Ozzy, Watt, Robert Trujillo, Chad Smith and Ali Tamposi and features exciting solos by legendary guitarist Jeff Beck. The music video for the song features Ozzy’s artwork: his hand-drawn demons have been animated and can be seen during Jeff Beck’s solo.

Ozzy commented on the song like this:

Having someone like Jeff Beck play on my album is just incredible, a total honor. There’s no other guitar player that plays like him and his solo on “Patient Number 9” is just jaw-dropping.

All in all, we got a great, melodic and catchy composition with a good chorus, you could even call it a hit. The song surprisingly combines heaviness and pop appeal, a kind of mixture of pop sparkle and hard rock firmness.

The second number is Immortal with guitarist Mike McCready from Pearl Jam. All in all, it’s a short, energetic, melodic and groovy song with a modern sound, quite catchy, but more simple and passable. And the solo, to be honest, wasn’t particularly impressive.

Then we have the first song with Zakk Wylde, Ozzy’s longtime guitarist and friend, called Parasite. It’s not a bad song, with a very melodic and poppy chorus, apparently, it was Ali Tamposi’s doing again.

Next, one of the best songs on No Escape From Now featuring Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi. A highly anticipated duet of two of the greatest musicians ever. The nearly seven-minute song with a beautiful slow riff is an obvious response to the days of Black Sabbath. The composition is very dynamic and has a dark and all fans know Black Sabbath atmosphere from the “13” album. All in all, it is probably the most powerful and heavy song on the record.

Ozzy Osbourne new album Patient Number 9 (2022) - Review

Next, back to the ’70s with the song One of Those Days featuring guitarist Eric Clapton. This song was definitely conceived and written in the style of Cream, where Clapton was the guitarist. It’s an interesting track, but it’s a bit out of place on the album, in my opinion.

Another composition with Jeff Beck is very beautiful and melodic ballad A Thousand Shades. In my opinion Ozzy’s voice sounds very good and very soulful, maybe his best performance on the whole album. The song has a passionate performance and orchestral accompaniment.

Mr Darkness is the next Zakk Wylde theme. One of the best on the album and very layered.A brilliantly constructed track that alternates between different parts and moods from quiet and calm to explosive and has a rousing guitar riff. This song once again shows that Zakk is the perfect guitarist for Ozzy.

The third single from Nothing Feels Right released on September 5th, again featuring Zakk Wylde. It is definitely another hit with a very catchy chorus and a great solo. Actually, there’s not much more to say.

Next comes Evil Shuffle, the last track with Zakk Wylde and in my opinion the weakest one with him, but at the same time it doesn’t fall out of the album’s overall picture. In general, for the amateur.

Degradation Rules. Another song featuring Tony Iommi, and it is the second single from the album, released on July 22nd. The song has a medium tempo with bluesy leanings, heavy riffs, harmonica and a great solo, with the harmonica being played by Ozzy himself. The song tells the story of a certain man who lives with perverted fantasies and addiction to debauchery, reading and watching appropriate magazines and apparently engaging, as the song sings, in Masturbation, generally having an interesting time. Yes, and it’s also one of the best themes on the record.

Ideally, this would be the end of the album, but then there are three more songs, two of which Dead and Gone and God Only Knows obviously fall out of this record and would have looked better on the last album by Ordinary Man. And then there’s the almost two-minute ending to Darkside Blues, more like a young rock band rehearsing in a basement in the ’70s.

As a conclusion. In my opinion, the last normal Ozzy album was released in 1995 by Ozzmosis. Then he turned into a caricature of himself, thanks to various media and above all MTV and everyone’s famous TV series. Ozzy started to be treated as a cartoon character instead of the great Black Sabbath vocalist and one of the fathers of heavy metal. And the albums released were not of the best quality, especially Ordinary Man. But the new record, which was presented, changes the situation.

Ozzy Osbourne new album Patient Number 9 (2022) - Review

Patient Number 9 is a pretty quality and solid product, and it’s the best Ozzy album of the 2000s. The album was created by people who know what an Ozzy album should be. It has musical moments that are really interesting, which sets the album apart from the commercially oriented Ordinary Man. The album as a whole is a kind of retrospective of Ozzy’s work and includes some dark and melodic compositions that his fans love.

The album’s best tracks are those featuring Zakk Wylde and Tony Iommi. These musicians understand Ozzy and how his album should sound, and their presence alone enhances the quality of all the material.

The sound of the record is very modern and polished, which is a minus. Ozzy’s voice was subjected to studio tricks and went through some stages of processing, but in spite of it his trademark manner of performance and timbre remained the same, you can’t lose the skill, it is either there or not. And considering all the illnesses and operations Ozzy went through, he deserves a lot of respect.

The album has some flaws as well. First of all it’s the duration of the whole hour and the last three tracks, which could have been safely removed from the record. But there are really great songs, and that makes the presented work the best album since Ozzmosis.

All in all, let’s wish Ozzy good health, and let’s hope that he can continue doing what he loves for many years to come and that this album is not the last.