January 21, 2015

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Serj Tankian and Tom Morello Share Amazing "Crazy Train" Cover

Getty Images
Getty Images

If you're going to cover one of the catchiest, hugest metal songs ever put to tape, you better not screw around. And coming at it as all-star tag-team doesn't hurt, either, as System of a Down singer Serj Tankian and guitar hero Tom Morello (Rage Against the MachineAudioslave) proved today with their cover of the 1980 Ozzy Osbourne face-melter "Crazy Train."

The cover comes from the forthcoming Immortal Randy Rhoads: The Ultimate Tribute. "Randy Rhoads is my favorite guitar player of all time," Tom Morello tells Rolling Stone. "It was his poster on my wall when I was practicing eight hours a day, and I named my firstborn son, Rhoads, after him. Serj, Rudy, Vinny and I rocked 'Crazy Train' as a sonic tribute to one of rock's greatest fallen heroes. Crank it." Rudy is Rudy Sarzo, a bassist who played with Rhoads in Ozzy's band as well as Quiet Riot (which Rhoads cofounded); Vinny is Vinny Appice, a drummer with three Sabbath albums and a ton of Dio records under his belt.

You might not peg Morello's experimental axemanship as a match for Rhoads' virtuoso lightning fretwork, but Morello nails the riffs, adds some of his own buzzy sauce, and serves up his own dizzying solo at the 2:40 mark. (And don't miss the finale noodling, either.) Meanwhile, Serj's giant croon is certainly a unique spin on Ozzy's trademark shriek.

Randy Rhoads died in a 1982 plane accident at the age of 25. He was the guitarist for Ozzy's solo debut, Blizzard of Ozz, as well as the sophomore LP Diary of a Madman.

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