EK 67236 Diary of a Madman
Produced by Max Norman, Ozzy Osbourne, Randy Rhoads
Released on October 1981
PLATINUM RECORD (5/10/82), 3x PLATINUM RECORD (10/26/94)
Find it at GEMM
EK 67236 cover  

F lying high again after the success of his debut, Ozzy returns to familiar haunts on Diary with a newfound swagger. There are the thinly veiled references to drug use (“Over The Mountain,” “S.A.T.O.”), its consequences (“Little Dolls”), some well-earned bragging rights (“Believer,” “You Can’t Kill Rock And Roll”), and a touch of vulnerability (“Tonight”). The standout track is, of course, “Flying High Again,” a delicious bit of gloating that suggests this father may have known best all along. While it lacks another instant classic, none of the songs on here are less than good. “You Can’t Kill Rock And Roll” is a terrific acoustic/electric track that provides yet another stairway for the faithful, while “Over The Mountain,” “Believer” and “S.A.T.O.” belong with the best metal from the early ‘80s. Randy Rhoads is his usual stunning self, unleashing a wonderful guitar lead in “S.A.T.O.” and otherwise indulging in the deft and the destructive with an uncanny sense of balance. You’d really have to look back to Jimmy Page or Tony Iommi to find a metal guitarist with such an ambidextrous light/dark touch, and look forward from Rhoads to see the influence he had on a whole of generation of metal guitarists. The rhythm section is again up to the challenge put forth by Rhoads, with new bassist Rudy Sarzo (who replaced Bob Daisley shortly before this recording) slipping seamlessly into the mix. Especially on the remastered editions, “Believer” and “Over The Mountain” showcase what a great metal rhythm section should sound like*. Infusions of melody also help the material, though “Little Dolls” strays awfully close to pop (just noting, not grousing) and “S.A.T.O.” is subdued enough to suggest Robert Plant. Even if the songs aren’t quite up to the level of his first album (most of these date from the same blizzard), Diary of a Madman contains too many indelible metal passages to pass up. (*Oops. It turns out that the rhythm section on this record is Bob Daisley and Lee Kerslake. However, for reasons I don't understand, the new rhythm section was credited with playing on this album even though they didn't play a lick. As if that weren't bad enough, when Kerslake and Daisley sued for royalties on the recordings, their parts were erased and re-recorded by Robert Trujillo and Mike Bordin for the 2002 reissues of the first two Ozzy albums. Just a day in the life of a corporate weasel, I suppose, but chilling to the rest of us.)

EK 67236 back sleeve EK 67236 gatefold sleeve
EK 67236 back sleeve EK 67236 gatefold sleeve


  1. OVER THE MOUNTAIN    4:31
  2. FLYING HIGH AGAIN    4:44
  3. YOU CAN'T KILL ROCK AND ROLL    (Ozzy Osbourne/Randall Rhoads/Robert Daisley)    6:59
  4. BELIEVER    (Ozzy Osbourne/Randall Rhoads/Robert Daisley)    5:15
  5. LITTLE DOLLS    5:39
  6. TONIGHT    5:51
  7. S.A.T.O.    4:07
  8. DIARY OF A MADMAN    6:16

    CD reissue bonus track

    All songs writtten by Ozzy Osbourne/Randall Rhoads/Robert Daisley/Lee Kerslake unless noted


RANDY RHOADS -- guitar
RUDY SARZO -- bass
Max Norman -- engineer
Louis Clark -- string arrangement (8)
Steve "Skull" Joule -- design
Ernie Spruce/Denise Richardson -- set
Cheryl Hubbard -- make up
Fin Costello and Tony Harrison -- photography
David Coleman -- remaster art direction & cover design
Hooshik -- design
Paul Natkin, Neal Preston, Greg Maston -- remaster photographs

UK October 1981 Jet LP/CS JETLP/JETCA 237 lyric sleeve
US/CAN October 1981 CBS/Jet LP/CS FZ/FZT 37492  
AUS'L 1981 Jet LP JT6028  
BRA 1981 Epic LP 144828  
JPN 1981 Jet LP 25AP-2237  
NET 1981 Epic LP 4630 861  
SAF 1981 CBS LP ASF-2708  
US 1995 Epic CD/CS EK 67236 22-bit digital remaster, lyric sleeve
RUS 1998 CD-Maximum CD CDM 798-158 repackaged w. NO REST FOR THE WICKED
BRA 2000 Epic CD 746019  
US April 2, 2002 Epic CDX 85249 digital remaster w. bonus track
EEC 2002 Epic CDX 502041 digital remaster w. bonus track
JPN   Sony CDX SICP-8036 digital remaster w. bonus track


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