In 1991, when No More Tears
was released, Ozzy Osbourne was in a lot of sh*t. He still hadnít found a permanent replacement for the deceased Randy Rhoads; Bob Daisley was threatening to quit his band; his relationship with Sharon was in tatters; and his well-known drug abuse problems were starting to get the best of him. So it wasnít in the most cheerful of moods that he set out to do this album. However, it would prove to be as fine a therapy as the best shrink could prescribe.
For the inception of No More Tears
, two all-around rockíníroll legends teamed up, since Ozzy had precious assistance from his long time friend Mr. Lemmy Kilmister. Lemmy co-wrote the lyrics to several songs on the album, including apologetic ballad Mama Iím Coming Home
, dedicated to Sharon. Another precious helper, and source of inspiration, was soon-to-be Ozzy bassist Mike Inez. He came up prior to the completion of the album and, in the audition, laid down what would become the title trackís world-famous bassline. As a result, and although Bob Daisley is credited as bassist, Inez earns a slot in the booklet under ębass and creative inspirationĽ.
Another big problem Ozzy solved with this record was the matter of who his next guitarist would be. Since Rhoads had passed away, Ozzy had worked with both Jake E. Lee and Brad Gillis. However, none of them had fully satisfied the Madman, and he was short of a guitarist for his new album. Then along comes Zakk Wylde. Ozzy liked what he saw, and not only was Zakk hired for the spot, he has kept it to this day, with No More Tears
marking the beginning of one of the most solid relationships in contemporary rock history.
So things were definitely picking up for Ozzy, who exorcized all his demons in this albumís songs. Nearly every other track talks about how the world always blames Ozzy and how he feels bad about it all. However, the Madmanís experience and savoir faire
keep these lyrics from sounding like the typical whining that we associate with nu-metal, for example, and instead makes them classy pieces of songwriting.
Musically, this album is as heavy as hard rock gets. Zakkís multiple influences, ranging from stoner rock to death metal, help him achieve an unique guitar style which greatly helps these songs. His soloing is very technical and his riffs are monumental, helping make songs like Mr.Tinkertrain
(a phaedophile anthem) and Hellraiser
colossal blasts of pounding heavy rock.
However, as good as the heavy tracks are, itís in the ballads that this album really shines. There are three, all of which top notch material (although Time After Time
is weaker than Mama
, and certainly weaker than Road To Nowhere
. All three are beautiful, introspective, but by no means mellow moments, and once again Zakkís guitar style adds to this.
But it would be unfair not to mention the other member of the band, drummer Randy Castillo. His steady tempos help give the songs a much-needed consistency, adding to the overall quality of this record.
However, No More Tears
is not without its flaws. A.V.H
and Zombie Stomp
are pure filler, with uninteresting choruses and musical patterns. However, all is forgiven by the scorching solo on Mama Iím Coming Home
The recent reissue of this masterpiece comes with two bonus tracks, the midtempo Donít Blame Me
and the ripping, roaring MŲtorheadian romp Party With The Animals
(perhaps influenced by Lemmy). Both fit in well and enhance an already very good album, that every hardíníheavy fan should definitely look into.