Richness of Content: "Off the Rails" is a 265-page masterpiece by rock and metal bassist Rudy Sarzo. The book is prefaced as a tribute to Randy Rhoads but it is more. Much more. Sarzo speaks scarcely about his own personal feelings leaving all factual imagery and nothing to the imagination but a hunger for more that is the world of Ozzy and company. Inspirational dialogue between Randy and himself, comical memoirs, and the captured essence of Osbourne antics make this book a true hard rock's fan dream. Randy's memory lives on not only through music but through these pages as well. // 9
Style: As previously mentioned the writing style leaves little to the imagination. The reader gets a deep look into what life was like touring with Ozzy during some of his darkest times. Rudy does not delay the inevitable nor does he try to sugar coat some of occurrences. When Randy's death is addressed, he takes the same approach making it almost too real. Rudy shows unbiased towards all sides making it clear that this book is for the memory of his friend and possible one of the greatest guitarists of all times: Randy Rhoads.
It should be noted that Rudy Sarzo wrote this book without aid from an additional author like so many of his heavy metal counterparts have chosen to do. For me this adds a genuine and pure feeling but others may find it lacking and potentially dry. However, this is one of best sources of information around to find out about Randy, Ozzy, and their relationship. For anyone Who is a musician I suggest picking this up ASAP. You will see (if you have not already) why Randy is one of the best musical models to base your playing around. Rudy makes him out to be "the musician's musician" which many have corroborated he was.
The writing style is the piecrust but the content is the award-winning filling. Most people eat the pie for the filling! // 9
Overall Impression: This book had my heart from the get go simply because I am a fan of hard rock and heavy metal. But to see a story unfold with Randy being the musical superhero, die a musical superhero, and have his legacy become bigger then he could of ever imagined is worth every penny. With literature, you always want to become enriched and not feel like you wasted time on another boring chapter. I am sure if Rudy wanted to he could of made this five hundred pages long but he did not. Their was not much to Randy's personality (or so it seems) but what was their was enough to inspire countless musicians even twenty-seven years after his death.
It is difficult to think that any fan or historian of hard rock would find any dissatisfaction with the book especially when taking into account Rudy's reasoning behind writing a certain way. Sure, it could have been longer and perhaps in the future Rudy will author more about his relationship with Randy. Nevertheless, I think I got the point. That point is plug my guitar into my Marshall, practice my scales and chords, and step aboard the Crazy Train. // 9