Ozzy Osbourne / Halford @ Air Canada Centre, Toronto ON, November 27, 2010

Review and photos by Laina Dawes

I wrote a short review for Exclaim on this show, but here are some extra photos. It was a great concert – minus the fact that photographers were only allowed to get as far as the soundboard to shoot Halford – hence no pictures (all I got were some awesome photos of the last name of one of my favorite musicians in lights over the stage).

That really sucked, since I was really looking forward to getting some shots of Halford (as I envied the pics that fellow Hellbound contributor Adam Wills took of him, decked out in leather with Judas Priest at the Molson Amphitheatre a year ago), but finally seeing Ozzy Osbourne play live was a treat. In the last few years, I’ve seen all the metal greats: Iron Maiden, Slayer, Metallica, Motley Crue, Voivod, Today is the Day, Pentagram, Dying Fetus, Napalm Death and Heaven and Hell (hell even Type O Negative – but Peter Steele – RIP – creeped me out)– a feat that as a teenaged metal geek girl living on the outskirts of Kingston, Ontario, I never thought I’d be able to see, so Ozzy was the last concert on my bucket list. And he didn’t disappoint.

I took this photo of the intro and thought that these were hilarious. Ozzy positioned himself in clips from Jersey Shore, (and called Snooki some horrific names), Lady Gaga / Beyonce’s video for “Telephone,” Twilight, The Hangover and Iron Man II. Again, it was really funny and very Ozzy and perhaps, a nod to the youngsters who might be more aware of him via The Osbournes versus Black Sabbath.

Here is a pic of Ozzy entering the stage. As I mentioned in the Exclaim review, He looked damn good for being, what? Late Fifties? Early Sixties? Sure he still had that old, white-man shuffle but hey, isn’t that endearing? I don’t know what I expected, but I was pleased. I also loved what was on the screen behind the drum kit. People went totally batshit.

The setlist was great: Perfectly selected songs from his solo stuff, like “Let Me Hear You Scream,” “Crazy Train,” “Bark at the Moon,” and “Mr. Crowley” and some Black Sabbath tunes like “Faries Wear Boots” and of course, “War Pigs.” I haven’t followed his solo career too much since I was about 11 or 12 when one of my older brothers (who is now a classical musician) brought home his first solo album, so this was a great set list for those who were enamored with the legend more than his musical catalogue.

His band? Awesome. Did they deviate from the recorded material? No, but they did their job. His new protégé, guitarist Gus G, was pretty damn hot, and one of the interesting things about the show is that he talked about the importance of his former guitarists. Obviously Randy Rhodes (whom my brother really liked), Jake E. Lee, Zakk Wylde, and then gave G. a proper introduction, as well as the other bandmates. Perhaps Sharon had something to do with it, but his band seemed quite young. And youth brings energy, which was a huge factor in the show. The bassist, Rob Nicholson, Drummer Tommy Clufetos and rhythm guitarist / Keyboardist Adam Wakeman really brought the energy up a notch.
Unfortunately I had to duck out a bit early – I was a bit nervous that Security had my child (my camera) and was advised by LiveNation to beat the throngs of people and get out quick. But it was a fitting tribute to my birthday (the day before) and the end of 2010 – which despite the amazing shows, sucked pretty hard – to see a legend play some great tunes and look revitalized. I only hope I age as well as Ozzy has.

Adam has been a photographer for Hellbound since day 1 and also has a hand in the technical aspects of running the site.