QUIET RIOT – 10

Quiet Riot 10When Kevin DuBrow bit the dust at the age of 52 from av cocaine overdose in 2007, everybody and me included thought that Quiet Riot were no more and never to be again. But drummer Frankie Banali wanted differently. Probably totally in denial of the fact that the last time Quiet Riot tried to make a career without any original members, things went down shit creek really fast, despite the fact that the album, Quiet Riot (1988, also under the name QR) was a damn fine record. Then the band consisted of Frankie, guitarist Carlos Cavazo, bassist Sean McNabb and the awesome singer Paul Shortino, today with King Kobra and the band split almost immediately after that album was released and flopped. Now Frankie has recruited singer Jizzy Pearl (ex – Love/Hate, Ratt, L.A. Guns) and the rest of the band are Chuck Wright (ex – House Of Lords) on bass who has been and out of the band several times during the years and Alex Grossi (ex – Bang Tango, Beautiful Creatures, Love/Hate, Adler’s Appetite) on guitar. Alex has been with the band since 2004 and one must admit that he’s really good. When I heard the news that Quiet Riot would continue, I really thought it was a joke. I’m not sure if the reason was the old cliché “because that’s what Kevin would have wanted”, but if it was, I’m not sure Kevin would not have wanted this because in my opinion, this has nothing to do at all with Quiet Riot. Also, the title 10 implies that this is their 10th album, which is also kinda disrespectful to the both the band’s name and Kevin, who started the band. This is the 10th album since Frankie joined for the brilliant Metal Health (1983), but the fact is, Quiet Riot released two albums prior to that, Quiet Riot (1977) and Quiet Riot II (1978), both featured Randy Rhoads who later got the job as Ozzy Osbourne’s guitarist and song writer. So, there were a lot of negativity surrounding this album – and the band’s being – before it was even released, but that doesn’t mean that there are any reasons at all to pre judge it. This album was listened to with an open mind, because frankly, projects like this has a tendency to surprise you for the better.

First of all, this album is only half new songs and the rest are live versions with Kevin DuBrow on vocals, which in all honesty is a bit weird for a come back album. The cool thing to do is to release a full album of new material and a live bonus disc for the deluxe version. Ah well. The album kicks off with “Rock In Peace”, no doubt a song written for DuBrow. Too bad the tune is a complete throwaway and a very poor attempt to write a new “Metal Health”. The two tracks that follows, “Bang For Your Buck” and “Backside Of Water” are standard second-rate hard rock tracks without any identity at all and both are completely pointless. What surprises me a lot is how alike Jizzy Pearl sounds to Kevin DuBrow. Normally, you could spot Pearl’s voice miles away, but at times, he’s extremely close to a clone here. “Back On You” and “Band Down” goes in one ear and out the other, so it’s really nice that the “new song section” closes with a really good song in “Dogbone Alley”, a song that rocks with a great groove and feels alive and kicking. Still, the over all sound is of that section is an unfinished demo, I’m afraid. A quick look at the live tracks reveals that none of Quiet Riot’s hits are present. “Shut Up Or Put Up” might be one of the few good tracks from the disastrous QR III (1986), but this live version doesn’t do it any justice at all. It sounds unmixed and all instruments are drowned in a big messy pile of slime. “Free” and “South Of Heaven” is taken from the last album released with DuBrow, 2006’s Rehab, but the as for the sound, it’s the same as on “Shut Up Or Put Up”, but those two songs are both fillers and I couldn’t care less if I ever hear them again. The closing “Rock ‘n’ Roll Medley” is the best of the live tracks, a song that tributes bands like Humble Pie, Jeff Beck / Rod Stewart and Led Zeppelin and the sound is much better. But for some reason, I get the feeling that that medley is more for the band themselves than for their audience. Some might beg to differ about the sound, that the live sound is unpolished and real and maybe so, but I don’t care because it’s so bad it’s almost unlistenable.

I’m sure some angry, hardcore Quiet Riot fan will wave the “you made up your mind before-hand” flag, but the truth is, that’s not how I roll. I love music too much to dismiss it before even listening to it and of all the records I have review and will review, I want every single one of them to be great. Because the more great music I can get my hands on, the better. But this album will get the chainsaw from me, because almost everything about this album is crap. Sure, Jizzy’s voice might fit the Quiet Riot sound, but everything about this album sounds amateurish. But it’s not just the fact that Quiet Riot doesn’t deliver with this line-up. Most of their 12 studio records released aren’t that much to write home about. Metal Health was a killer, the follow up Condition Critical (1984) sure had its moments, but was in many ways just a carbon copy of its predecessor, complete with another Slade cover and apart from the Shortino fronted album, they haven’t really released anything worth while at all. So, the fact that this isn’t Quiet Riot more than The Last In Line or Dio Disciples are Dio hasn’t the slightest thing to do with how I view the songs or production. Yes, I believe that they should have used another name, but no matter what they would have called this, this album still would have gotten the chainsaw treatment. Couldn’t you have reformed Heavy Bones instead, Frankie? That was a damn fine band!

Jon Wilmenius (2/10)

Tracklist:

1. Rock in Peace
2. Bang For Your Buck
3. Backside of Water
4. Back on You
5. Band Down
6. Dogbone Alley
7. Put Up or Shut Up
8. Free
9. South of Heaven
10. Rock ‘n’ Roll Medley

 

 

 

 

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13 comments on “QUIET RIOT – 10

  1. I really hate it when an album is digital-only. Why should I go to the trouble of burning my own CD? I can give my money to other bands who sell physical product, such as Helix. Anyway.

    Rock in Peace, from what I hear in that clip, doesn’t sound too bad, but it doesn’t sound like Quiet Riot. I admit I have a bit of a grudge against QR, because of a person on their camp. I do want to give the album a fair shake.

    Regarding the lack of live hits, Frankie stated that he wanted to include surprising songs that you’ve never had live versions of. But I prefer your idea Jon – a full album with a deluxe edition with the live stuff.

    That I would pay money for, but not a digital album.

  2. Thanks for making me not waste my time on this. This is a band that has been run into the ground….Frankie should have just went back to being a gun for hire like he was when he did the WASP gig…..and let QR go…

    • Man, I have the biggest respect for Frankie Banali as a drummer, in my opinion he’s one of the best rock drummers out there. His work on The Headless Children is nothing but brilliant.

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