|Review: Ozzy Osbourne - Speak of the Devil|
|Speak of the Devil|
Label: Van Blad
Year released: 2002
Duration: 74 min.
Review online: January 27, 2003
Reviewed by: Pierre Bégin
for:Speak of the Devil
Rated 4/5 (80%) (12 Votes)
"Speak Of The Devil" is a DVD released only in Brazil (to my knowledge). It may be hard to find and may cost a lot to import. This was shot during the "Diary Of A Madman" tour in 1982. The title of this DVD is a bit deceitful; this is not the same live as the CD of the same name. Sure, it was the same period of time with the same musicians, but Ozzy plays mostly songs from "Blizzard Of Ozz" and "Diary Of A Madman" instead of a best of the Black Sabbath repertoire like on the live CD. The Ozzy’s line-up was Brad Gillis (guitar), Rudi Sarzo (bass), Don Airey (keyboards) and Tommy Aldridge (drums). Sure, it wasn’t the legendary Randy Rhoads on guitar (who died a few months earlier in a plane accident), but Brad did a great job. He played very well and accurately each rhythm and lead. This was the first time I ever saw him play live.
The 74 minutes show begins with "Over The Mountain", "Mr. Crowley" and "Crazy Train", three excellent songs that are among the best in all of Ozzy’s career. Talking about Mr. Osbourne, he’s in very good shape vocally and physically. Following that were others Ozzy classics "Revelation (Mother Earth)", "Steal Away (The Night)", the controversial "Suicide Solution" (lyric-wise) and the beautiful ballad "Goodbye To Romance". They played all the songs from the "Blizzard Of Ozz" album minus "Dee" and "No Bone Movies". In the middle of the set list, there are a guitar and a drum solos and a small jam between the musicians. It was a little bit too long; I would have preferred one or two more songs on the set list instead. They finished their set list with the excellent "I Don’t Know", the bass-opener "Believer" and finally "Flying High Again". Their encore includes three songs from the Black Sabbath era, "Iron Man", "Children Of The Grave" and finally his first hit from 1970, "Paranoid". It was the same encore as the live CD.
The stage was huge and the drum was raised on the top of a long staircase. Between this staircase was an immense wall of stone which simulates very well a medieval castle. Keyboardist Don Airey played the entire gig in one of the big windows at the top. The lights were very effective and well used.
The sound and picture quality are reasonable, very good indeed for the time. However, there are some minor audio glitches throughout the DVD like on "Revelation (Mother Earth)". In addition, sometimes the songs are too cropped between each ones (bad editing). The mix is only in Dolby Stereo 2.0. A re-mix in 5.1 would be a must. Also, there is not enough footage of the crowd (almost nothing).
The DVD contains almost no extras, only an Ozzy biography. Why has Sharon Osbourne, -who has released just about everything possible related to Ozzy-, not released this masterpiece worldwide? This is a very interesting period in Ozzy’s history. I’m sure that a new release with more extras, enhanced picture, less cropping and a 5.1 re-mix would sell a lot. To conclude, it was a great experience for me to see this video. I mean, I thought there was no entire footage of that period and to see this on DVD with that quality for the time was incredible. Moreover, all the songs are great compared to, for instance "Live And Loud" and Ozzy is in very good shape compared to "Live At Budokan". On the other hand, a more mainstream release with more extras and a better editing would be necessary. I recommend this DVD to the Ozzy freaks only.
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Review: Down To Earth (reviewed by Pierre Bégin)
Review: Live and Loud (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
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