Werewolves out of 10
Ozzy usually has album covers featuring himself, and Bark At The Moon
is no exception. This time he's decked out as a werewolf, complete
with fangs, claws, a furry mane and a fuzzy ass. He's climbing up
a tree or something and there's a full moon in the background, with
Ozzy leering in true lunatic fashion.
Lycanthropes out of 10
I'm trying to take into account several factors. First, this album
is almost 2 decades old. Second, compact discs didn't really start
to take off with the masses until the later 80s. In the early part
of the decade, the record companies didn't seem to put too much effort
into CD booklets. Add to that, this CD has been issued and re-issued
many different times, with slightly different packaging in every instance.
Lastly, the booklets differ in issues for the USA, Europe, and Japan.
So if you're hunting through a used CD bin, it's a crapshoot as to
which version you'll end up with. Therefore, I'm basing the 4 out
of 10 rating on the booklet I have to look at. The back cover is another
photo of Ozzy in his werewolf suit. Inside, there's a real basic presentation
of credits, track listing, lyrics, and a black-and-white photo of
Ozzy's studio band for this album. Pretty simple as far as booklets
Theriomorphs out of 10
This is by no means the best record Ozzy's ever made, and a lot of
people seem to pass it off as his worst, but I dig it. In 1983, Ozzy
was in a tough spot to follow up his previous studio masterpiece,
the classic Diary of a Madman album. After the tragic passing of Randy
Rhoads, the Ozzman had to find someone to fill the late virtuoso's
shoes. No easy act to follow, but the torch was passed to former almost-Rough
Cutt, almost-Ratt, and almost-Dio guitarist Jake E. Lee. Although
relatively unknown, he stepped up to the plate and took Rhoads' place
as lead guitarist and songwriting partner of Ozzy. Even though the
rhythm section of Bob Daisley/Tommy Aldridge remained intact, Lee's
addition results is a different chemistry, different vibe, and different
sound than what was heard on the previous Ozzy CDs. A bid saddening
to Rhoads afficiondos, but never fear - some of these songs rock indeed!
The title track and "Rock 'N Roll Rebel" are killer examples
of the Ozzy/Lee songwriting partnership. Naturally, Ozzy has his obligatory
semi-ballad, this time in the form of the Pat Boone-sounding "So
Tired." There is also a very noticable amount of Don Airey's
keyboards used throughout the compositions, especially on tracks like
"Centre of Eternity" and "You're No Different."
"Waiting for Darkness," perhaps my favorite song on this
disc, is an intriguing combination of orchestrated keyboards and Lee's
technical prowess on the fretboard. It makes me want to eat a bat!
Please note that, as with the 'booklet' rating above, there are several
different issues of this CD with different tracking. For instance,
the song called "Centre of Eternity" on the US release is
called "Forever" on some overseas releases. Likewise, there
may or may not be a lousy song called "Slow Down" and/or
"Spiders." The next re-issue is purported to contain "One
Up the B-Side," which was the B-Side for the "Bark at the
Moon" single in the UK but previously unavailable in the US.
Comments: Bark at the Moon
may not hold up as well with young teenagers today as it did 20 years
ago, but the cover will still scare their grandparents! A must-have
for any true Ozzy fan.