Although Mastodon's heavy, sludgy prog sounds more inspired by the Sabbath side of Ozzy Osbourne's career, it turns out drummer Brann Dailor is very much influenced by the Metal Madman's early solo work with late guitarist Randy Rhoads. Some of this influence comes from an odd coincidence Dailor shares with Rhoads. "My birthday is the day that he died," Dailor says. "I don't know if my interest was necessarily because of that, but that's another thing that played into my obsession with Randy Rhoads as a kid, and I love Randy Rhoads. He was an incredible guitar player and a unique personality and just, too soon, man, too soon." In celebration of Rhoads' work, Dailor has picked his favorite songs by the guitarist below.
"Well, 'Crazy Train' obviously is in there because that's the first song I learned on guitar and that riff is just so awesome, you know, when you break it down. They just don't write them like that anymore. It's just a great riff and a great solo and it's like a perfect song."
"The live version of 'Mr. Crowley' has probably my favorite guitar solo and toward the end you can almost hear, I swear, Ozzy telling him 'Not yet.' Like, 'Don't blow their minds yet.' And Randy is like, [makes sound of solo] 'Oh, I couldn't stop them'… So 'Mr. Crowley' live, the solo on the Tribute album. That solo at the end is so incredible. It seems like every note is like, 'Oh, my God.'"
"That's another incredible one. I love that one. It's a beautiful song and I love the guitar solo in it. It's just a great ballad."
"It's an epic. It's just a beautiful song and he was trying to really kind of put those two worlds together of classical guitar, and the kind of heavy epicness of classical music, and meld it with heavy metal. What he was doing with Ozzy, I think, completely changed the landscape of heavy music."
"I love that song, that riff is so sick. Unfortunately there weren't too many songs. Randy died too young."
Below, Brann Dailor reveals his "intense" — and hilarious — training regimen.