on June 12, 2011
This should have been a 5-star review. I've been waiting for this remaster of this classic for a long time. However, the new 2011 remastering is really disappointing and there are 2 major audio glitches. Still, there are a couple nice bonuses.
There is a very noticeable glitch at :47 in "Dee" that ruins the transition from that song into Suicide Solution. The audio warbles loudly twice as the last chord rings. I noticed other people have complained about this, and sure enough, it is on my CD as well, so it is likely on every pressed copy especially since I have this remaster from both the box set and the single disc from Amazon and they are identical with their problems. Did anyone even listen to the master/reference CD before pressing it? This defect is not on any prior version and is not even in the Blizzard documentary when Ozzy is listening to the end of Dee on the master tape.
There is another problem in "Steal Away". It starts out a bit muted, then at 0:03 all of a sudden it sounds like a pillow is lifted off your speakers.
Like others have said in their reviews here, it is too compressed and the 1995 remaster actually sounds better (jusr compare the middle instrumental section of Revelation of this CD and the '95 remaster and you'll see). When the levels on a CD are pushed too loud as they are here, it makes the CD sound very harsh and ruins the dynamics of the music. The soft parts are louder and the louder parts are softer. The instruments sound blended together, and not in a good way. My playback system is average, so you don't need expensive equipment to notice this.
Even the panning of the effects at the beginning of Crazy Train don't pan as smoothly as on the '95.
Note - the mix of "You Looking at Me, Looking At You" on this 2011 remaster is different from the mix that was on the 1980 B-side of Crazy Train. The CD mix is the same as what was on the Japan-only releases from 1984 and 1985 that had rare tracks. The original B-side mix was better as it had a great guitar tone like in Crazy Train and there wasn't a cowbell in the chorus. This track is still a treat as long as you've never compared it to the other mix.
"Goodbye to Romance" vocal/guitar mix is a 2010 remix where they just removed Bob Daisley's and Lee Kerslake's bass and drums, but it is nice to hear more of Randy's playing underneath it all, and it doesn't fade out as Randy ends it with some nice strummed harmonics.
"RR" is a brief, but great solo by the incredible Randy Rhoads. A must for any Randy fan or guitar player.
What happened to obvious bonus tracks like the Mr. Crowley live EP, including the non-LP track "You Said It All"? Likely, because there is still bad blood between the Osbournes and Bob Daisley/Lee Kerslake, these tracks were left off as well as the rest of the concert from 1980 that initially was announced as a bonus CD with this one. There isn't even a single photo of Bob or Lee in the CD booklet. There is still a war going on.
This is an essential album, but stick to the 1995 remaster for the album tracks (the one with the blue border around it and "OZZY" in big letters on the front and catalog # EK 67235 - make sure to verify the catalog # before buying it used as some sellers use stock photos and mix up versions), get the mp3 of "RR" and "Goodbye to Romance (guitar/vocal)" (unless you must have the CD anyway, like me) and hound Ozzy to put out the B-side mix of "You Looking at Me, Looking at You" on CD along with the Mr. Crowley Live EP.
3 Stars (5 huge stars for the music, but - 1 star for the harsh remastering, and - 1 star for the unacceptable glitches, especially the one in "Dee").
If you want to check out more about how loud mastering adversely affects the sound on CD's (Metallica's Death Magnetic anyone?), or you think this Blizzard '11 remaster sounds better than the '95, just type Loudness War into YouTube or Google and you'll see how loud CD's ruin the sonics and dynamics of the music on it.
Note to record companies like Sony: if you want to sell more CD's, more people will buy them if you just make them sound better, which you can do since the mastering is completely in your control. Poor sound = less sales.
on March 21, 2006
This is a MASTERPIECE. A Classic featuring the best playing of the time. Rhoads at his best, a ripe Ozzy and a nice Keerslake/Daisley rhythm section.
Unfortunately... it was RE-RECORDED lately and re-issued with Mike Bordin and Robert Trujillo taking places over the original bass and drums tracks. The result being horrible, not because of bad playing, but of a very poor production work, ends up being unnacurate, poor sounding, and not tight at all.
Being a musician myself, and understainding Ozzy's position regarding lawsuits, I must admit this is a step towards non-beligerant options regarding the issue of the two first Ozzy-as-solo-artist records. However, even tho I respect a lot Bordin's and Trujillo's work (they are both fine musicians), I find the end result on this reissue simply disgusting. And not being Bordin and Trujillo's fault precisely. There is a SEVERE lack of precision in the production work, being that there are less-than-discreet differences on sound, on TIMING and what was originally played. It is harder to copy or re-create a work done twenty-something years ago on a note-by-note basis, but what else do fans expect? I mean, nobody ever imagined (or wished) a classic album should be re-done on this fashion, but if you EVER had the original recording, and have a little bit of attention paid to the work here, you will find lots of flaws and missing things, or a loose rhythm section "following" the pre-recorded guitar work, instead of it being the basement for the rest of the music (as it should be...).
Unfortunately, it is difficult to tell this reissue from the original one if you're trying to buy it "new and used" over a website. I got the reissued re-recording instead of the 1995 edition (with the small artwork over a big blue background) since the seller seem not to notice the difference between them, and am severely dissapointed. A clever example of what should never be done to a classic...
on February 10, 2013
Amazon really needs to get better at sorting out the reviews for multiple editions of the same material. The last edition, where the drum and bass tracks were rerecorded was definitely a horrible mistake that ruined the album. This 2011 edition reinstates the original tracks and remasters the entire album, adding some bonus tracks to boot. If you buy any reissue of this album, the 2011 edition is the one you want.
on May 21, 2009
What a shame.
Of course I already owned vinyl, cassette, and CD versions of this album. I've been an Ozzy fan since the 80's and this was one of the few albums I used to listen to (and practice drums to) over and over again in my teenage years, so I know it well.
My wife recently (and unknowingly) bought the "reissue" to play in her car (yes, we're good consumers like that) and I didn't immediately notice the different drums (Mike Bordin does a pretty good job of duplicating Lee Kerlsake's performance), but the bass guitar didn't sound right. And by the end of the first song I knew something was really wrong. It all sounded "off", like the drums were recorded after everything else (because they were). I thought it could possibly be just because of a re-mix. But then I noticed that one of Lee's harmless drumming mistakes in "Crazy Train" (going into the verse after the guitar solo) was magically fixed in this recording! And the feel of the slower songs ("Goodbye to Romance" and "Revelation") were not at all like I was used to hearing (and playing to) - and everything just sounded... after all these years... so sloppy! "Revelation (Mother Earth)" is especially bad (rhythm-wise).
After researching the unimaginable story of this "re-issue", it all made sense. The original studio performances were not recorded to a click track and Mike had problems precisely duplicating the original tempo fluctuations. And how you can blame him?
When recording modern music, the drums are normally recorded first (before or simultaneously with the bass/rhythm guitars) and then everything else layered on top. This is done for a very good reason: the other musicians listen to and que off the drums for the feel and tempo as they're recording their additional tracks. If you do it backwards, you end up with something horribly sloppy. Especially when you don't use a click trick (as was obviously done with this album). You can't go back in time and fix the human tempo changes without re-recording *all* the tracks/instruments. And Randy Rhoads wasn't available to do that.
I can't believe that Mike and Robert would agree to participate in this abomination of rock history! You can't fool the fans.
I once auditioned for Ozzy Osbourne (back in the 90's) and I must say... I'm really glad I wasn't the drummer asked to contribute to this travesty.
Lee and Bob were instrumental in the creation and success of these songs and it's just unimaginably wrong what Ozzy has attempted to pull off with this sham. So, obviously, I have problems with this album from a moral standpoint as well as a sonic one. Cutting the other musicians out of the photos and attempting (and failing) to replace their performances is just unforgiveable.
Shame on you Ozzy!
on April 21, 2006
To date of writing, there are 2 different versions of 'Blizard of Ozz' avalible on Amazon.com. One is this one, which is the original thing. The other - absolute [...] The bass and drums in all the tracks for it have been replaced so Ozzy wont have to pay his former bandmates royalties.
So again, get this one - the REAL Bliz.
on June 28, 2013
In casually browsing Amazon.com's stock of Ozzy Osbourne music, I decided what other people had to say about the NEWER (2011) vinyl releases of the classic Blizzard of Ozz and Diary of a Madman albums. However, MANY of the first, easily visible reviews on the 2011 vinyl releases are for the 2002 re-issues for these albums on CD, which is COMPLETELY inaccurate as the 2011 releases feature the original recordings, intact, remastered!
Now it is true, that prior to the 2011 releases, that the prior re-issues from 2002, were hideous abominations of what once were very great albums under Ozzy Osbourne, with the work of the late Randy Rhoads on guitar. The horror that were those releases, were that they featured re-recorded drum and bass guitar tracks, due to a lawsuit the Osbournes were going through from the session players that recorded the original tracks, over un-payed royalties. So, they eliminated their recorded tracks from the albums, and had them re-recorded by Osbourne's then current lineup in 2002.
So without further adieu, here is what I have to say for the releases. I ended up getting the box set which included not only the vinyl records, but also the CD's and a 30th anniversary DVD, as well as a poster, coffee-table book with pictures AND a replica golden cross just like the one Ozzy Osbourne has.
Anyway, the vinyl records, are outstanding! Pressed on 180 gram vinyl (VERY thick vinyl versus the regular records anyone can come across when going for vinyl records), the remastering is outstanding. In comparison to the records to the CD's, it does actually sound like a different mixing was used for the records, which hasn't been heard before for these classic tracks, and a VERY much welcome new sound for the songs.
This simply will not disappoint any Osbourne fan, and even for new listeners, I recommend the 2011 vinyl remasters for Blizzard of Ozz and Diary Of A Madman!
on June 3, 2011
I picked up the much anticipated re-release of Ozzy's classic album (and arguably one of metal's greatest albums of all time) "Blizzard of Ozz" today. After listening to the album, I have to say, in my humble opinion, the remastered sound of the 2011 version is not as good as the 1995 version. The 2011 version is still pretty decent, as you do hear more bass presence and overall audio quality sounds clean and there are subtle more details, however, where this version falls short is the volume and treble level. To my ears, the sound was cranked a bit too high. No disrespect to Senior Mastering Engineer, George Marino, but he seem to have fallen to the loudness war. The album has been too compressed (much akin to 2002 Tribute album and in a way, like Metallica's Death Magnetic). For instance, when you hear Ozzy's famous scream of the introduction to Crazy Train, as well as whenever his vocal level rises, it sounds too harsh with too much evidence of treble. Come to think of it, his vocal sounds similar to the 2002 horrible remasters. The drumming suffers as well (sounds annoyingly loud and tiny). This is also true, regretfully, with Randy's solos for Crazy Train and Mr. Crowley, among other songs. I've played the CD on my car stereo system and have found the need to decrease the treble setting because the songs create a static noise to the right side of the car speaker when played loud, and my ear I might add. This is not the case with the 1995 remaster which sounds smoother and warmer like a high quality LP; in other words, there are more depth and dynamic of the songs. But I'll let you be the judge on which version is better, as sound quality can be very subjective. I'm just glad I still have the original 1995 Blizzard, Diary, and Tribute remasters.
on April 14, 2002
About the only thing bad about this version of the album, is the cover. This Album was what started the whole Ozzy solo thing, after being kicked out of Black Sabbath. He went thru his ups and downs before gettng to the point of making music again. Thanks to the talents of Randy, Bob and Lee (If you disagree with Bob and Lee's usefullness, go buy the newly recorded remaster which will make you sick!) and Ozzy, We get this great album. By the way, doves taste good with contracts! lol. Onto my review of the songs:1. I Don't Know - Ozzy tells us that he doesn't really know the answers. It's a middle pace song with a good beat. . .90%2. Crazy Train - The biggest song of all. This Sad song later became a symbal of Randys Rhoads as a passing Star. RIP. . .100%3. Goodbye To Romance - Such a soft song. A goodbye to Black Sabbath is what Ozzy said he wrote the song about. . . .90% 4. Dee (Guitar instrumental)- Randy performs this great, and to this day is a trademark of Randy and many young guitar players start out play this guitar Instrumenal. . .85% 5. Suicide Solution - All about drinking. The song is condemning drinking. Of coarse someone missunderstood the music. But thats a story best left to the history of Ozzy. . . .90%6. Mr. Crowley - Well this song was written to Crowley. Cool trippy song in a way. I also enjoy Randys guitar in this one alot. . .95% 7. No Bone Movies - This Song is a mid paced song that is about being a porn additic. A fun song really tho. . . 85%8. Revelation (Mother Earth) - About the end of the world. Somewhat sad, and doomy! I enjoy the piano /guitar bridge. Randy Rules! . . .100% 9. Steal Away (The Night) - A Quick Runaway Love song. So it's a tad odd for ozzy t do it. So what?! It's cool. . .90%If you Like this album check out: Ozzy Osbourne - Diary of a Madman (Green Border), Ozzy Osbourne - Bark at the Moon (Grey Border), Ozzy Osbourne - No More Tears (Brown Border), Black Sabbath - Paranoid (remaster).
on June 13, 2011
I have to agree with another reviewer who observed that the high end has been boosted quite a bit, and the bottom end seems to lack punch. The mastering is unnecessarily loud and compressed, but tolerable for the most part. There are worse remasters out there. However, I find myself having to tone down the treble and up the bass to strike a suitable balance. Beyond that it's nice to have the original unmolested tracks re-issued, so it deserves an extra star for that, otherwise I'd only give it 3. If there was ever a metal album worthy of an audiophile remaster on a superior format (such as SHM-SACD), this one truly deserves it. Your average consumer won't notice or care either way, so this remaster will satisfy 95% of potential buyers out there. Die hard fans who are cursed audiophiles might want to stick to their original CDs, LPs, or imports, and pray that the remastering gods will grace us with an analog mastering on a digital format worthy of being called definitive.
on September 19, 2014
Just plain sucks is all I can say. The 2011 reissue of the vinyl lp is flawed. I have gone through 3 brand new copies
and have found the exact same glitch in the same exact spot on the record. The first chorus on Crazy Train is where
you will find it. I have found it in other places as well. It appears that when cutting the wax the weight was not distributed
evenly and it had dug in deeper than it should. The mark is no bigger than a centimeter but jumps the needle something
awful. Suppose I'll be looking for an older version of this, what a shame...