Published Mar 17, 2016Mountain Goats leader John Darnielle has shared a tribute to late metal guitarist Randy Rhoads, which comes from an unreleased album centred around Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath. While their "Going Back to California" is up now as a free download, Darnielle has said that the full LP "will probably never see formal release."
Earlier in the week, Darnielle had promised to give the faithful a tune called "Wizard Level" for free if his bowling team, the Reproductive Justice League, could raise $4,000 in funds for the Carolina Abortion Fund, which provides assistance to low-income individuals who cannot afford abortions. That goal was quickly met, with donations currently totaling in excess of $12,000, but Mountain Goats have yet to record the tune.
To compensate, Darnielle looked back to a series of songs recorded last year. In a lengthy blog post, he noted that since Mountain Goats are currently working on new material, and "the album of songs about Ozzy is probably gonna cobweb on my hard drive for a while," he's put up "Going Back to California."
The song concerns the 1982 plane crash that killed Randy Rhoads, who had played lead guitar in Ozzy Osbourne's band. The accident occurred 34 years ago this Saturday (March 19).
"I'm very fond of these sad songs about Ozzy which will probably never see formal release, and am so happy to give this one a home in the world," he wrote, while adding of the forthcoming "Wizard Level," "the other song, the acapella-harmonies one, I hope to track on Saturday, but I am a dad to two kids, Saturday mornings can be hard times to get work done so it might be next week."
You can download "Going Back to California" over here.
In 2008, Darnielle penned a book on Black Sabbath's 1971 classic Master of Reality, as part of the 33 1/3 series.