Part 2 of my 2-part review of the Quiet Riot Twin Pack set. Twin Pack bundled the band’s final two releases: a retro live album, and the final studio album, Rehab.
QUIET RIOT – Rehab (2006 Demolition)
I love Quiet Riot, even more than I have reason to. Metal Health was the first “metal” album I ever bought, on cassette, and I’ve re-bought it three more times since. I just love that album, and I admit it’s probably 60% music and 40% nostalgia. Since it came out, I’ve managed to collect a lot of Quiet Riot. Prize possessions are my CD copies of Quiet Riot I and II. This Twin Pack set was important to me because the version of Rehab contained herein has the European bonus track, “Wired To the Moon”.
It turns out, however, that Rehab kinda sucks. It has its supporters who enjoyed the heavier, bluesier sound. Rehab unfortunately repeats the problem that Quiet Riot have had for many years: they don’t write very many good songs! Kevin DuBrow and Frankie Banali were reduced to a duo after the departures of Rudy Sarzo (who went on to Dio and is now in Tateryche) and Carlos Cavazo (now in Ratt). Rehab had the right ingredients in place, with the awesome Tony Franklin on bass and Glenn Hughes providing backup vocals, but it was not to be. I give them an A for effort, as I am usually in favour of heavying up the sound and adding blues elements. They get a D for execution.
The concept was to leave behind the glam rock, but the songwriting is so underpar. Choruses and verses don’t mesh, melodies don’t stick in the head, and riffs don’t hit you where it hurts. The best song, “South of Heaven”, is a really good Zep-ish tune though. “Strange Ways” features an incredible solo by Neil Citron, like a cross between jazz fusion and Eddie Van Halen. Jazz Halen? On the other hand, “Old Habits Die Hard” is one of the more colossal failures. Aping Joe Cocker’s “With A Little Help From My Friends”, DuBrow sinks this one all by himself with his overwrought lead vocal.
There are some good moments. Pretty much all the guitar solos and instrumental sections are incredible. The drums are good. A song called “Beggars and Thieves” is one of the better songs, because it is anthemic and memorable like old Quiet Riot. Unfortunately, that cannot be said of most of this material. Glenn Hughes classes up the place by several notches when he shows up at the end, but this also highlights Kevin DuBrow’s limitations.
I dislike the cover art and packaging. DuBrow’s wig, oh my God. Seriously? The old Quiet Riot logo is also gone, and the masked mascot dude is barely visible. The album was self-produced by Kevin and Frankie, but they really should have spent some money on a producer with a decent set of ears. These songs would not have passed muster with any serious producer. The title of Quiet Riot’s final album is now a sad irony, considering DuBrow’s overdose at age 52.
And sadly, almost unbelievably, the band’s legacy has been tarnished even further with Banali’s hack version of the band currently touring without any original members. And Kevin rolls in his grave.
I remember these guys slagging off Slade in interviews, talking about how they got forced into covering one of their songs. Shame they can’t write very many good songs. Slade were pretty good at that!
What’s also funny to me is that these guys were once considered the rivals to Van Halen. They competed for gigs, they both guitar heroes, and Quiet Riot managed to get an album out first. Yet their biggest hit was a cover, and the only original song they had that was a major hit was Metal Health.
I mean I know very little about these guys, but nothing I see or hear about them makes me want to know more. I was toying with buying Metal Health for a while but I’ll probably pass!
Well, hold up for two reasons:
1. I haven’t reviewed it yet.
2. When I eventually buy the new versions with the added bonus tracks, I’ll need somebody to hand down my old copy to.
I will hold my horses!
You’ll notice that one of those people is Frankie Banali.
Yeah I bought this as well Mike,your bang on with your review…..
Back in 96 QR showed up in good ol Tbay and played to a packed out bar at the time I think they were plugging there greatest hits release..anyways they came on stage and opened up with Mane Attraction and you could tell Dubrow was in a mood as someone after the third song chirped ‘play Bang Yer Head” Dubrow went off on the guy and basically said it was his stage,his show and he will decide weather or not Metal Health will be played ” hahaha..of course they played it ,they were good live but man I seen em play Winnipeg in 84 headlining the Arena and than forward 11 hrs later..yeah I guess some nights I would be like blah!….we all laughed as they had this hardcore one trick pony roadie who did the drums ,guitars and had his flashlight…..so at the end of the show the roadie handed each guy his robe had his flashlight out and made sure that each guy in the band did not mug out on the 4 steps down to the floor and out the back door they went right to there tour bus……
They again returned in 1999 with Sarzo and Dubrow was in good spirits and in 2006 when they played a outdoor show here in Tbay with Mcnabb and Grossi in tow….
Wow Deke, I hate to say it, but Tateryche might be a step up for Sarzo! Ratt is probably a much better situation for Carlos!
The new version with the new singer is coming to Toronto in a few days. I won’t be going but I’d be curious if anybody shows up who actually knows DuBrow is dead.
This sounds just as bad as the other disc in the set. Yikes. I’m glad there were a couple of tracks that weren’t all bad, though.
I have Metal Health on vinyl, never seen a cheap copy on CD. I’m looking. Taranna shopping list!
Also, Neil Citron? Immediately made me laugh, thinking it wa sa play on Neo Citran! So I looked him up, and as far as I can tell it’s not a pseudonym. And I’d never call him that to his face – as I read, it turns out he could kick all our asses! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neil_Citron
Metal Health is a good one for vinyl…love that album cover on vinyl. On vinyl you can actually see that the masked dude has buttons of the four QR members on his straightjacket.
I always assumed Neil Citron was a pseudonym, but maybe your research reveals an alternate scenario. Maybe it’s the “Boy Named Sue” story. Parents gave guy a crappy name, guy has to learn self defense to get by!
Yeah, my copy’s pretty beat up (and not by me – I got it second hand years ago).
Maybe Mr. Citron learned all those martial arts ‘cos Stabby might come visit…
I got mine second hand from an ex girlfriend! She gave me that, two Zeppelin albums (II and IV) and a Joan Jett LP that I sold at a garage sale for 50 cents.
That’s pretty awesome music from an ex… or was she an ex sometime AFTER this gift?