In one of popular music's strangest scenes of the year, heavy metal icon Ozzy Osbourne and hip-hop wildman Busta Rhymes entered a New York studio together over the weekend to team up on a track for Busta's upcoming album.
Ozzy came in to lay down vocals on "This Means War," a retooling of the classic "Iron Man" that Ozzy first sang with Black Sabbath in 1970. The track, which will turn up on Busta's upcoming album, "Extinction Level Event," will feature Busta rapping on some new verses and Ozzy singing on the chorus as well as a couple of the verses.
Producer DJ Clark Kent came up with the idea for the collaboration, which also features the musicianship of the Lordz of Brooklyn.
Speaking with MTV News while working on the track at New York's Soundtrack Studios, Busta said he was drawn to that particular classic of the metal form for the same reasons that millions of fans have been over the years.
"So when I heard ('Iron Man'), I'm listening to the lyrics, 'Is he live or dead,' and I'm like, 'Oh man!'" Busta told MTV News of his reasons for approaching the Sabbath classic. "The intensity, the drive, the dominance, just the whole energy in the music is the effect that I always want to have, you know what I'm sayin', when I'm making my records or when I'm performing."
Of course, the move seems to be a big stretch for Ozzy as well. "It's an area... it's the first time that I've gone and explored this area," Ozzy told MTV news of his foray into hip-hop. "I might get into a bit more know you know. It's a lot of fun, it really is a lot of fun. (pointing to Busta) This guy's great." [28.8 RealVideo]
Ozzy got his feet wet in the hip-hop cross-over pool with a track on the "South Park" soundtrack that saw him hook up with DMX and the Crystal Method (see "Ozzy, DMX, Crystal Method Meeting Up In 'South Park'").
Busta's "Extinction Level Event," which will feature the track, is due out on December 8.
As for Osbourne, his new double live album titled "Reunion" with seminal metal group Black Sabbath hit store shelves on Tuesday. The album contains material culled from a live show in the band's hometown of Birmingham, England as well as two new tracks. Sabbath will kick off a U.S. tour on New Year's Eve in Phoenix at Diamondback Stadium and has already started making in-store appearances to support their new work, which marks Sabbath's first album in 20 years with the group's original line-up. (For more on Sabbath's reunion plans, check out "Black Sabbath Taps Megadeth, Slayer, Pantera, Soulfly For New Year's Eve Show As 'Reunion' Hits Stores.")