Ozzy Osbourne reveals why he's never listened to Dio-era Black Sabbath albums: "it's like my ex-wife"

Ozzy Osbourne and Ronnie James Dio
(Image credit: Getty)

Ozzy Osbourne has revealed the reason he hasn't spent any time with the records produced by the Ronnie James Dio-fronted version of Black Sabbath, comparing it to lusting after an ex-wife.

Speaking on a recent episode of Ozzy Speaks on SiriusXM (as reported by Ultimate Classic Rock), the Prince Of Darkness gives Dio - who replaced Osbourne in Black Sabbath after his sacking in 1979 - plenty of credit, but says he has no real interest in getting stuck into the albums Dio produced with the band.

"Ronnie did a good job,"Osbourne admits. "At the time I was fucking sad because...they were the only thing that ever really happened to me." While Osbourne goes on to give his former Sabbath bandmates credit for hiring someone with a different singing style rather than just roping in any "Ozzy sound-alikes", he also confirms that he's never listened to the Dio-era Sabbath records (1980's Heaven And Hell, 1981's Mob Rules and 1992's Dehumanizer).

"It's like my ex-wife," Osbourne argues. "You leave a band like that, it's just like getting divorced. You don't go, 'How's your new bloke? Is he better than me?'"

Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi recently reflected on his time playing with Dio, calling the experience "a bit of a challenge", but one that he relished.

"Obviously, when Ronnie got involved, the writing became different because of the different sort of way he approached [music]," Iommi mused. "And it was a really exciting period for us… It sort of boosted us up."

Iommi and Osbourne recently reunited in their Black Sabbath form to close out the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, playing a snippet of Sabbath classic Iron Man before launching into a full-hearted version of hallmark anthem Paranoid. It marked Ozzy's first on-stage performance since his spine surgery earlier this year.

Merlin Alderslade
Executive Editor, Louder

Merlin moved into his role as Executive Editor of Louder in early 2022, following over ten years working at Metal Hammer. While there, he served as Online Editor and Deputy Editor, before being promoted to Editor in 2016. Before joining Metal Hammer, Merlin worked as Associate Editor at Terrorizer Magazine and has previously written for the likes of Classic Rock, Rock Sound, eFestivals and others. Across his career he has interviewed legends including Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, Metallica, Iron Maiden (including getting a trip on Ed Force One courtesy of Bruce Dickinson), Guns N' Roses, KISS, Slipknot, System Of A Down and Meat Loaf. He is also probably responsible for 90% of all nu metal-related content making it onto the site.