Just before the original Black Sabbath lineup became a summer touring institution around the turn of the century, drummer Bill Ward had a lot of time on his hands, hence his second overall solo release, 1997's When the Bough Breaks. Longtime fans expecting Ward to follow in the same direction as Sabbath's trademark sludgy riff rock may be taken aback, but such midtempo selections as "Hate," "Shine," and the bluesy "When I Was a Child" feature lyrics that appear to catch Ward in an "open your heart" mode. And what's not to like about one of the greatest song titles of recent memory, "Please Help Mommy (She's a Junkie)"? Sure, Ozzy's solo albums will outsell Ward's by a wide margin, but of the two artists' most recent recordings, Ward's are the more interesting and unpredictable, as proven by When the Bough Breaks.
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AllMusic Review by Greg Prato