Ozzy Osbourne recruits Tony Iommi for his Sabbath-esque single, Degradation Rules

[L-R] Ozzy Osbourne and Tony Iommi
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Ozzy Osbourne has released Degradation Rules, the second single from his forthcoming 13th solo album, Patient Number 9

And after recruiting guitar legend Jeff Beck on the album’s title track, this time he’s joined forces with his old Black Sabbath bandmate, Tony Iommi.

Degradation Rules is probably the closest thing to Sabbath we’ll hear on Patient Number 9, with a gargantuan powerchord electric guitar riff that could only come from the mind of Tony Iommi, and a face-melting wah-flavored solo which the guitarist hinted at in November last year. Check it out below.

Patient Number 9 is reportedly set to feature an all-star backing band. While no official credits have been released yet, the group is believed to include Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith, and Metallica’s Robert Trujillo and Black Label Society’s Zakk Wylde, both of whom have served stints with Ozzy Osbourne’s band in the past.

And like Ozzy’s previous album, 2020’s Ordinary Man, his next outing will feature Andrew Watt on production duties.

In addition to Jeff Beck and Tony Iommi, Duff McKagan, Mike McCready and Eric Clapton are also set to appear, the latter of whom Ozzy no longer appears to be paranoid about, after admitting in a recent episode of SiriusXM’s Ozzy’s Boneyard that he once thought Slowhand was following him around.

“Many, many years ago, me and Sharon [Osbourne, Ozzy’s wife/manager] were in New York and we had to go to an awards show,” he recalls. “Everybody was there, and I was still doing drugs and alcohol and I was freaked out by it.

“So we go to this award show and afterwards there’s me, Grace Jones – that chick I did the award show with – and I wanted a picture of Eric Clapton, me, and Grace Jones together. 

“I thought, ‘He’s gonna think I’m a…’ And he’d just come out of some place. So he was freaked out, which I didn’t know. And I had convinced myself that he was gonna stop this photograph from being [released] and I’d never seen it for the longest time.”

He continues: “And then I went to an AA [Alcoholics Anonymous] meeting in the valley, many years later, like 10 years later. I turn around in this AA meeting and there at the back was Eric Clapton sitting there. And I’m like, ‘Fucking hell!’ I’m thinking, ‘He still remembers.’ Not thinking of what he’s done in the last 10 years.

“I’m thinking ‘All he’s done, he’s still thinking how much he hates me.’ I’m thinking, ‘At the end of the meeting, I'm gonna get out that door – I'm fucking legging it!’ I’m thinking, ‘He hates me. He's gonna call me the biggest c**t he's ever met.’ I get in the car and drive off. A couple of weeks later, I go again. There he is again. I’m thinking, ‘This fucking guy is...’

“I’m paranoid as fuck! So I’m just about to cross the road and get in my car and drive off. He goes, ‘Ozzy.’ I go, ‘Here we go.’ And he goes, ‘Good to see you in the room.’ We had a chat and I thought, ‘Wow, what a nice guy.’ The next week, I go to a music stand and that photograph [with Clapton and Grace Jones] was in the magazine, the first magazine I picked up.”

Patient Number 9 arrives September 9 via Epic Records.

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Sam Roche

Sam was Staff Writer at GuitarWorld.com from 2019 to 2023, and also created content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar.