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  1.  
    I find this to be a question worthy of asking, as both albums are metal masterpieces that brought both Ozzy and the rest of Sabbath into the 80's and had major influence on what metal would sound like in that decade.

    But which is better? They're both great in their own right, and sound completely different from each other (and also from the Sabbath sound they had when they were together). Blizzard of Ozz has one of the most iconic frontmen of all time, and one of the most influential guitar players of the 1980's on it, but Heaven and Hell has the creator of the genre, a singer more known for his actual voice than his stage presence, and it overall just feels more like a band really working together to create a masterpiece. Given that the songwriting on both records is fantastic, I'd say that this is apples and oranges, but that's no fun, is it?

    Starting off with Blizzard, it's clear that this is the more influential of the two records if only for Randy Rhoads. Being perfectly honest, I'm not the biggest fan of his soloing style (as I prefer Tony's more bluesy approach), but it's still awe-inducing and very easy to see that it played a MAJOR role in shaping what metal would come to be in the 80's - less doom/blues, and more fast, melodic soloing over breakneck riffs. However, I really like Randy's rhythm style. Example -

    On top of that phenomenal guitar tone, the riffs on this album are classic - Crazy Train being the most obvious example that both shows off Randy's style and songwriting skill more than anything. Speaking of Randy's songwriting skill, here's one minor criticism of the album - I have a hard time believing that it would be NEARLY as good without Randy, though it's labeled as an Ozzy solo record. I love Ozzy as much as the next guy, but this record plays it off as though Ozzy is the sole presence, when, in fact, it feels much more like an actual band (which it really is). This might not have been Ozzy's decision, as I could definitely see the record company thinking they'd get more money off of a well known name than a brand new band that people might not know contains Ozzy. As Ozzy says on the record, "I don't know".

    More on Ozzy - he's fucking great on this record. I'm not entirely sure if I prefer his voice over Dio's (that truly is apples and oranges), but I do like his work in Sabbath more than Dio's despite both being utterly phenomenal. Ozzy probably came up with the vocal melodies for this album, and they fit so well with Randy's playing it's not even funny (we'll talk more about guitarists and singers working well together later....). For my favorite example of this, look to the above video (the best song on the record, IMO). The slower middle section is transcendent. This is classic Ozzy.

    As for the songwriting, do I even need to say much? "I Don't Know", "Crazy Train", "Mr. Crowley", and "Revelations (Mother Earth)" are absolutely classic, with plenty of other great/good tracks to go with it. It's not as consistent as Heaven and Hell IMO, but it's still very consistent in its own right.

    On to Heaven and Hell. 2nd best album with a new frontman in 1980, and 2nd best album with a new frontman of all time.

    Despite the fact that this is labeled as Black Sabbath, it doesn't have the same feeling as their previous work - I can certainly discern the Sabbath musicians under the music, but the songwriting is much more melodic yet of just as high quality. This truly feels like a band fully working together to create something. Not only do you have 3/4ths of the original band that created metal, but you've got this brilliant singer/melody composer working with them to create something fresh and breathtaking. The result is just that.

    Tony's riffs haven't been this good since Sabotage, and they are IMO just as good as almost anything he's ever written. On top of that, I absolutely love his style - he's not the best soloist, technically (at least not in comparison to Randy), but he really does more for me than almost any other. It's not the same sort of soloing found on their debut, but it's still very centered around it. Sometimes he just plays one note that fits with the background so well that he lets it sit for a second, effectively giving me chills.

    Do I need to mention his rhythm playing? He is 2nd only to Malcolm young in the riff department, and there are PLENTY of fantastic riffs on this record. Neon Knights, the title track, Die Young....

    On to Ronnie. Holy. Fucking. Shit. This guy's voice is pure gold. A much better singer than Ozzy, technically, though it didn't work when Dio sang stuff like Paranoid IMO (even though Ozzy can't touch stuff like Heaven and Hell). Regardless of that, his voice and melody writing gave this album some of the most transcendent moments in Sabbath's history, and it mends with Tony's heavy riffs so well that it creates a sound like no other. Example -

    Aside from them, Geezer's bass is louder than it had been since Master of Reality if I'm correct, and he and Bill Ward give this album a bit more of a classic Sabbath feeling without detracting from the freshness at hand.

    As for the songwriting....

    Children of the Sea, Heaven and Hell, and Die Young are more than mere classics - they are some of the best metal songs ever written IMO. They all include some phenomenal riffs from Tony that are intertwined with perfectly crafted melodic sections and a bit of experimentation (especially on Die Young). The rest of the songs are great, as well, especially the classic opener Neon Knights, the somewhat funky Lady Evil, and the closer Lonely is the Word.


    To me, Heaven and Hell beats Blizzard of Ozz despite both having some of the best metal musicians of all time on them and containing some of the best songwriting from each artist, respectively.

    Rest in peace Randy Rhoads and Ronnie James Dio.

    I'd love to hear which is more liked around here!
  2.  
    Love both albums, prefer Heaven and Hell as the title track, Die Young, Neon Knights and Children of the Sea are just so fantastic. But a band effort is was not, it was becoming more of a Iommi/Dio duo disc with originally all bass played by someone else and Ward being pretty out of it; but doing a great job on the album. I guess story is that Geezer heard the title track and jumped back to the band and re-did the bass on the album.

    But otherwise a great post, you emptied the pajazzo on the topic:



    https://upload.wikim...
  3.  
    Didn’t know that. Also, Geezer wasn’t writing lyrics, so I suppose you’re right.
  4.  
    Tough call. Both are metal classics.
  5.  
    Blizzard. Two words, Randy and Rhoads.
    • AC/DC rock music: acdc1988
    • Sep 25th 2019
     
    I like both of them with Blizzard Of Ozz probably being the more influential though, but can't really
    say which one i like better...depends on my mood.
    As much as i like Heaven And Hell, i sometimes have my problems to label it as a Black Sabbath album, as it
    is quite different to the Ozzy years. It says a lot, that Dio never could do the Ozzy songs convincingly, and Ozzy probably never could have done the Dio songs.
    • AC/DC rock music: rideon77
    • Sep 26th 2019
     
    Two great classics but I'm going with Heaven And Hell. Neon Knights....Children Of The Sea....Die Young....The title track on the same album....mindblowing....plus Lady Evil....Lonely Is The World....incredible
    • AC/DC rock music: rideon77
    • Sep 26th 2019 edited
     
    I'm not sure BOO Is the most influential of the 2 Because HAH influenced a whole new era of metal bands including Manowar for example
  6.  
    Blizzard, because of Randy Rhoads. Those guitars are incredible.
    • AC/DC rock music: 900
    • Sep 26th 2019
     
    Posted By: MeanstreakRandy Rhoads.


    Rhoads was MEAN. Hell of a style for back then, the way he used different scales, nice technique... Such a great era for guitar, all the players emerging around then.
    • AC/DC rock music: trock
    • Sep 26th 2019
     
    For me its BOO

    Randy Rhoads brought a whole new level of technique and songwriting to Rock. It's hard to remember a time when this sounded so new and fresh, but in 1980 you had Eddie and Randy and guitar changed forever IMHO.

    But

    I love Ronnie's voice because I am such a Brain fan and he fit that sound great for me.

    The amazing thing for me was Randy really did 2 albums, both recorded within about 6 months of each other, I think Diary is the better album and he had grown so much in that short of time. The song "Diary of a Madman" is pretty insane, Flying High Again, Over the mountain etc. These 2 albums were such trend setting albums. and again, done within 6 months of each other

    Whatever the third album would have been would have been something to behold with his classical coming more and more in to bear.

    Anyway, BOO for me since I feel it really started a new neo classical trend that influenced a whole generation of players and bands
  7.  
    Was Randy Rhodes truly original, or was he copping some of Eddie's tricks?
    • AC/DC rock music: 900
    • Sep 26th 2019
     
    Posted By: LondonOntarioWas Randy Rhodes truly original, or was he copping some of Eddie's tricks?


    My guess is, he was really original in many ways, but influenced by some of Ed's style, the tapping obviously, for example.
  8.  
    Posted By: LondonOntarioWas Randy Rhodes truly original, or was he copping some of Eddie's tricks?
    I’m not an expert on either’s playing styles, but I think Eddie had more bite/aggression and also the tapping, while Randy was more about melodic solo runs. Tell me if I’m wrong, but that’s how it sounds to me
    • AC/DC rock music: 900
    • Sep 26th 2019
     
    Posted By: MyCubiclePenguinI’m not an expert on either’s playing styles, but I think Eddie had more bite/aggression and also the tapping, while Randy was more about melodic solo runs. Tell me if I’m wrong, but that’s how it sounds to me


    Randy definitely did a lot of classical scales and modes, really imaginatively as well, not just the usual natural and harmonic minor stuff.

    Eddie's solos have always been more blues and pentatonic but with other stuff dashed in (usually within the tapping) - but even with the tapping he's usually just extending his blues and pentatonics. I could listen to Van Halen for hours and not get bored, he's so soulful and interesting to listen to.
    •  
      AC/DC rock music: Inferno
    • Sep 26th 2019
     
    I'd go Heaven and Hell over Blizzard, but not over Diary Of A Madman. That one is the classic Ozzy-Randy record.
  9.  
    The beginning of the solo to Mr. Crowley uses a very aggressive pentatonic run, something similar Page did in Good Times Bad Times, but taken a step further technically. It's great stuff.
    • AC/DC rock music: 900
    • Sep 26th 2019
     
    Crazy Train was one of the first songs I played in a band, I had a Strat through a Marshall combo, no humbucker, but overdriven. Rehearsed in this big hall and when I did the solo and tapping it kind of sounded like a piano tinkling away. Good times.

    He was some player, and must have been a mellow guy because he managed to get on with Ozzy very well and the latter's piss-stained wife.
  10.  
    Posted By: 900
    Posted By: MyCubiclePenguinI’m not an expert on either’s playing styles, but I think Eddie had more bite/aggression and also the tapping, while Randy was more about melodic solo runs. Tell me if I’m wrong, but that’s how it sounds to me


    Randy definitely did a lot of classical scales and modes, really imaginatively as well, not just the usual natural and harmonic minor stuff.

    Eddie's solos have always been more blues and pentatonic but with other stuff dashed in (usually within the tapping) - but even with the tapping he's usually just extending his blues and pentatonics. I could listen to Van Halen for hours and not get bored, he's so soulful and interesting to listen to.
    Hence why I'm more of an Eddie guy. I'm not knocking Randy in the slightest, but I'm not a huge fan of his influence, such as with all the Yngwie Malmsteen's and whatnot. I think the key thing to soloing of that sort is experimentation - toss in some high tension chords that don't fit with the music.

    I really shouldn't be talking, though, because I have listened to about 20 seconds of Yngwie and only know 1 album from Randy.
    • AC/DC rock music: 900
    • Sep 26th 2019
     
    Posted By: MyCubiclePenguinHence why I'm more of an Eddie guy. I'm not knocking Randy in the slightest, but I'm not a huge fan of his influence, such as with all the Yngwie Malmsteen's and whatnot. I think the key thing to soloing of that sort is experimentation - toss in some high tension chords that don't fit with the music.


    Malmsteen already had his style by then though - he was more influenced by Ritchie Blackmore (especially the embarrassing mannerisms!) and Uli Roth, plus some Hendrix, and of course the Paginini and Bach stuff...
  11.  
    Posted By: 900
    Posted By: MyCubiclePenguinHence why I'm more of an Eddie guy. I'm not knocking Randy in the slightest, but I'm not a huge fan of his influence, such as with all the Yngwie Malmsteen's and whatnot. I think the key thing to soloing of that sort is experimentation - toss in some high tension chords that don't fit with the music.


    Malmsteen already had his style by then though - he was more influenced by Ritchie Blackmore (especially the embarrassing mannerisms!) and Uli Roth, plus some Hendrix, and of course the Paginini and Bach stuff...
    Haha, well, that's why I shouldn't be talking ;)
  12.  
    Yngwie in drunken asshole rocker style arrogance, on a flight to Tokyo. A woman on the flight that had enough of Yngwie and his band and poured water on him and this recording is after that incident. Yngwie talks about unleashing the fucking fury and swears in Swedish. Later Yngwie, if I remember correctly, pissed in a cup and poured it over the poor lady. The keyboard player Jens Johansson was completely wasted and run around naked. Crazy:

  13.  
    Posted By: 900Crazy Train was one of the first songs I played in a band, I had a Strat through a Marshall combo, no humbucker, but overdriven. Rehearsed in this big hall and when I did the solo and tapping it kind of sounded like a piano tinkling away. Good times.

    He was some player, and must have been a mellow guy because he managed to get on with Ozzy very well and the latter's piss-stained wife.


    Crazy Train is a masterpiece.
    • AC/DC rock music: 900
    • Sep 26th 2019
     
    Posted By: MeanstreakYngwie talks about unleashing the fucking fury and swears in Swedish.


    LoL what a dick. I love some of his music and guitar playing, but yeah, a dick at times. Hopefully less so now he's older.
  14.  
    Posted By: CliffFINmark2Love both albums, prefer Heaven and Hell as the title track, Die Young, Neon Knights and Children of the Sea are just so fantastic. But a band effort is was not, it was becoming more of a Iommi/Dio duo disc with originally all bass played by someone else and Ward being pretty out of it; but doing a great job on the album. I guess story is that Geezer heard the title track and jumped back to the band and re-did the bass on the album.

    But otherwise a great post, you emptied the pajazzo on the topic:



    https://upload.wikim...


    Wow, I didn't know Geezer Butler left the band and then wanted to come back when he heard the new material. Can't blame him, that album is a masterpiece.

    I love both albums but if I had to choose, it's gotta be Heaven and Hell.
  15.  
    I have tremendous respect for Blizzard but never listen to it anymore.

    I still spin Heaven and Hell's title track, Neon Nights and Die Young (a fucking BEAST of a song that could be my fave by them) regularly. And Children Of The Sea once in a while. (This fucking lack of CDs and albums has reduced me to playing single songs most of the time, as opposed to what I did in the past).

    Both great albums with masterful and iconic guitars. But I just listen to Heaven And Hell these days. It has more...gravitas. And perhaps less campiness.
  16.  
    I've never listened to Blizzard of Oz, did not realise it was so highly regarded. Will give it a listen.
    I like Heaven and Hell but it can't touch the first five Sabbath albums for primal heaviosity and lunacy which is pretty much what I want from BS.
  17.  
    Posted By: Alex LebanonI've never listened to Blizzard of Oz, did not realise it was so highly regarded. Will give it a listen.
    I like Heaven and Hell but it can't touch the first five Sabbath albums for primal heaviosity and lunacy which is pretty much what I want from BS.
    I'm surprised, you said first five and not first six ;)

    Heaven and Hell is certainly more about the soaring melodies mixed with some heaviness, while, let's say MOR, was definitely more about the thumping doom-y riffs. Ozzy Sabbath is better, I agree, but HAH is something completely different (hence why they re-named themselves Heaven and Hell when Ronnie and Vinny got back with Tony and Geezer in 2009).
  18.  
    Posted By: Alex LebanonI've never listened to Blizzard of Oz, did not realise it was so highly regarded. Will give it a listen.
    I like Heaven and Hell but it can't touch the first five Sabbath albums for primal heaviosity and lunacy which is pretty much what I want from BS.


    Alex, saying Dio-Sabbath "can't touch" the Ozzy era is misguided: they are two very different beasts: the first is a basic, pentatonic-blues-based, sludgey and doomy affair and the second is a more complex, melodically adventurous, and epic sound.

    Most relate to the former but I prefer the latter. Nothing they ever did in the Ozzy-era ever approached the title track of Heaven And Hell or many of the other tracks.

    That's like comparing Let There Be Rock to For Those. People will have their preferences but you can't really compare them.
  19.  
    "Nu jävlar". Wonderfull - first time I hear this famous recording! Yngve was a prat, but he did some great music in the 80's ...
  20.  


    Alex, saying Dio-Sabbath "can't touch" the Ozzy era is misguided: they are two very different beasts: the first is a basic, pentatonic-blues-based, sludgey and doomy affair and the second is a more complex, melodically adventurous, and epic sound.


    You seem to speak about the first couple of albums with Ozzy. I can't see how albums like Sabotage and SBS can't be judged as "adventurous" and "complex". They sure ain't all bluesy tracks with a gloomy feeling.

    Most relate to the former but I prefer the latter. Nothing they ever did in the Ozzy-era ever approached the title track of Heaven And Hell or many of the other tracks.

    Are you sure you've listened to the albums after MOPS?
    • AC/DC rock music: Mike206
    • Sep 29th 2019
     
    RJD's albums with Sabbath are as epic as any albums they ever did with Ozzy, and are highly underrated.
    Randy's playing on Blizzard is a bit of a sugar high to me ... lots of happy moments on some classic 80s songs, but as an album it doesn't age all that well ... some great singles, but an uneven album.
  21.  
    Posted By: soulstripper666


    Alex, saying Dio-Sabbath "can't touch" the Ozzy era is misguided: they are two very different beasts: the first is a basic, pentatonic-blues-based, sludgey and doomy affair and the second is a more complex, melodically adventurous, and epic sound.


    You seem to speak about the first couple of albums with Ozzy. I can't see how albums like Sabotage and SBS can't be judged as "adventurous" and "complex". They sure ain't all bluesy tracks with a gloomy feeling.

    Most relate to the former but I prefer the latter. Nothing they ever did in the Ozzy-era ever approached the title track of Heaven And Hell or many of the other tracks.

    Are you sure you've listened to the albums after MOPS?
    I am absolutely lost as to what "MOPS" means.
  22.  
    Posted By: Bedlam_in_Toronto
    Posted By: Alex LebanonI've never listened to Blizzard of Oz, did not realise it was so highly regarded. Will give it a listen.
    I like Heaven and Hell but it can't touch the first five Sabbath albums for primal heaviosity and lunacy which is pretty much what I want from BS.


    Alex, saying Dio-Sabbath "can't touch" the Ozzy era is misguided: they are two very different beasts: the first is a basic, pentatonic-blues-based, sludgey and doomy affair and the second is a more complex, melodically adventurous, and epic sound.

    Most relate to the former but I prefer the latter. Nothing they ever did in the Ozzy-era ever approached the title track of Heaven And Hell or many of the other tracks.

    That's like comparing Let There Be Rock to For Those. People will have their preferences but you can't really compare them.


    Each to their own - I'm not sure that me saying H&H "can't touch" the Ozzy era is really that different from you saying "Nothing they ever did in the Ozzy-era ever approached the title track of Heaven And Hell" and I was careful to add "what I want from BS" i.e. other people will want different things which is totally valid. To my ears, anyway, there are three tracks on MOR alone that grind the title track of H&H into fine dust in terms of sheer power. But I accept that H&H is technically more complex just as RJD is technically a better singer than Ozzy. At the end of the day I suspect it's 'cup of tea' thing :)
  23.  
    Posted By: Alex Lebanon
    Posted By: Bedlam_in_Toronto
    Posted By: Alex LebanonI've never listened to Blizzard of Oz, did not realise it was so highly regarded. Will give it a listen.
    I like Heaven and Hell but it can't touch the first five Sabbath albums for primal heaviosity and lunacy which is pretty much what I want from BS.


    Alex, saying Dio-Sabbath "can't touch" the Ozzy era is misguided: they are two very different beasts: the first is a basic, pentatonic-blues-based, sludgey and doomy affair and the second is a more complex, melodically adventurous, and epic sound.

    Most relate to the former but I prefer the latter. Nothing they ever did in the Ozzy-era ever approached the title track of Heaven And Hell or many of the other tracks.

    That's like comparing Let There Be Rock to For Those. People will have their preferences but you can't really compare them.


    Each to their own - I'm not sure that me saying H&H "can't touch" the Ozzy era is really that different from you saying "Nothing they ever did in the Ozzy-era ever approached the title track of Heaven And Hell" and I was careful to add "what I want from BS" i.e. other people will want different things which is totally valid. To my ears, anyway, there are three tracks on MOR alone that grind the title track of H&H into fine dust in terms of sheer power. But I accept that H&H is technically more complex just as RJD is technically a better singer than Ozzy. At the end of the day I suspect it's 'cup of tea' thing :)
    Exactly, it's all about taste when you're dealing with things of such high quality.

    To me, Vol. 4 is peak Sabbath - crushing riffs mixed in with slight experimentation, great melodies, and a one of a kind guitar tone that exists on that album only. Not quite as classic sounding as the first three records, but a good blend of their early days and what they were moving towards.
  24.  
    Posted By: soulstripper666"Nu jävlar". Wonderfull - first time I hear this famous recording! Yngve was a prat, but he did some great music in the 80's ...


    I came across this vid. Insane. He plays the fast picking part of Van Halen's Eruption with his teeth.