HardReviews 5
by Martin Popoff

How Like A Winter - ...Beyond My Grey Wake
(Martyr Music)

Bridging sorrowfully the new progressive goth of bands on The End with European goth, My Dying Bride-like doom as well as hints of industrial goth, Italy's How Like A Winter, have an expertly assembled slab here, save for the electronic drums, which gives the presentation a stiff, shrill sheen when cushy warmth might have worked better. Still, the ideas are plentiful and often mesmerizing towards a Porcupine Tree or Pink Floyd direction. The low Aaron-like (Fernando-like?) croon of vocalist and leader Dust works well against the large variety of textures, many keyboardy, many sliced deftly with violin, better than average metal riffs and thin, back-mixed female vocals. Bottom line though: great material, odd, misguided mix, and er, get a drummer. Best part, the names of the (typically large, co-ed) band: Dust, Tragedy, Mist, Agony, Bane and Misery... shame on their mothers!
Rating 6.5

Garry Sharpe-Young - Ozzy Osbourne: The Story Of The Ozzy Osbourne Band
(Rock Detector/Cherry Red)

This is a story that had to be told and down under insider Garry Sharpe Young is the man to tell it, putting his meticulous er, detective work to task, finding all manner of Ozzy sideman and facilitator to tell the story of the work that really goes into making Ozzy Osbourne the crack band it is (yes, band). It really is fascinating, the parade of drummers, guitarists and bassists that have contributed to the legend, with Bob Daisley standing far and above as the most important unsung hero, penning most of the man's classic lyrics, playing bass, contributing to the music. I mean, just the dozens of rarely reported trivia points on Sabbath alone are worth the price of this book, an action-packed tome that actually ends around the 200 page mark, the back half being exhaustive discography info for Ozzy as well as all these "sidemen." See www.rockdetector.com for more info.
Rating 8

Hard Reviews Page 6