Archive for Restless Breed

Great Metal Albums of 1983: Riot- Born in America

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 9, 2016 by 80smetalman


Looking back, I had heard of Riot about the same time as I did Hanoi Rocks. The difference being that I never saw Riot live and therefore it would be several more years before I actually listened to anything from them. I do feel like I missed something there. I have already reviewed two of their previous offerings, “Fire Down Under” and “Restless Breed,” both of which were damn good albums. Now that I have listened to their 1983 album, “Born in America,” I can say that album too is just as good.

“Born in America” is another straightforward, in your face metal album from Riot. There are no frills, just great songs. The first two set the album off in totally the right direction. Things appear to slow down with “Wings of Fire.” The song suckers you into believing it’s a ballad for the first minute then Kapow! The song goes into another metal frenzy. (Note: I was going to say ‘Wham’ but that word shouldn’t be used on any 80smetalman post.) I love the guitar solo on “Running From the Law,” another good song.

Next comes “Devil Woman” and yes, it’s a cover of the Cliff Richard single. Admitting my sad teenage years, I liked Cliff’s version when I heard it in 1976. Back then, that was probably the hardest song on AM radio. Riot takes the song and raises it to its full potential. Great power chords with some cool guitar soloing and Rhett Forester’s voice sounds a hell of a lot better on this song than Cliff Richard, sorry Cliff.

In spite of my high praise for “Devil Woman,” it is not the high point of “Born in America.” It’s simply the climax. All of the songs that follow are superb starting with my favourite, “Vigilante Killer.” The ones that follow on are just as good. All have the trademarks of what makes good heavy metal but it would be unfair to the songs if I were to mention any one of them without mentioning the others. They’re all that good and that makes the album fantastic.

Track Listing:

  1. Born in America
  2. You Burn in Me
  3. Wings of Fire
  4. Running From the Law
  5. Devil Woman
  6. Vigilante Killer
  7. Heavy Metal Machine
  8. Where Soldiers Rule
  9. Gunfighter
  10. Promised Land


Rhett Forester- vocals

Mark Reale- guitars

Rick Ventura- guitars

Kip Leming- bass

Sandy Slavin- drums

“Born in America” would mark the end of Riot as it was known here. All except Mark Reale would leave the band leaving him to eventually recruit other names for the band. But that wouldn’t happen for another five years in heavy metal history. Forrester would have some solo success but again, that’s a story for later. Since “Born in America” was such a cool album, it can be safely said that Riot definitely went out on a high with it.

Next post: Bernie Torme and the Electric Gypsies

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Great Metal Albums of 1982: Y&T- Black Tiger

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 2, 2015 by 80smetalman

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They say you learn something new everyday and the other day I did. My first experience of Y&T was in 1983 when I saw and heard their video for “Mean Streak” on MTV. I liked the band and I liked the song and that was the start of my experience with them. Now last week I stated that there was a song on the Riot “Restless Breed” album that sounded a little like Y&T. I assumed that since Riot had been around since the 1970s, that Y&T must have drawn influence from them. As I now dig deeper into the band’s history, (not only the album but the band too passed me by in 1982), I have discovered that Y&T’s first album actually came out in 1976, the year before Riot’s first album. So maybe it was the other way around but that doesn’t matter. It was a good song and the 1982 “Black Tiger” album is a good album.

If you heard the 1985 single “Summertime Girls” and think that was Y&T, forget about it. “Black Tiger” is a true metal album. I like the introductory first track “From the Moon.” It is an instrumental with some flashy guitar work that simply draws you into the rest of the album. “Open Fire” is a rip roaring track that holds you interest and Y&T puts their personal stamp on this one. I love the guitar solo on “Don’t Wanna Lose,” Dave Meniketti does smoke the finger board on that one. After your ears get bashed around a bit by the next few tracks, which the track “Forever” stands out the most. This is one of those catchy anthem type songs that you can sing along with. It also opens with a gutsy guitar intro before going almost thrash, wow was all I could say.  Things take a more boogie rock approach with “Barroom Boogie.” This in an enjoyable song and one I would put down as a good drinking tune. Unfortunately, the next song, “My Way or the Highway” is the weakest link here. It has some good moments but seems to let itself down in some places. However, things go out very nicely with the near ballad, “Winds of Change,” a really good song. So with “Black Tiger,” I have found another band where I must go back and listen to some of the early stuff.

Track Listing:

  1. From the Moon
  2. Open Fire
  3. Don’t Wanna Lose
  4. Hell or High Water
  5. Forever
  6. Black Tiger
  7. Barroom Boogie
  8. My Way or the Highway
  9. Winds of Change


Dave Meniketti- lead guitar, lead vocals

Phil Kennemore- bass, vocals

Joey Alves- guitar

Leonard Haze- drums, percussion

The price I paid for serving my country back in 1982 was that I missed a lot of great albums and some great bands. With Y&T and “Black Tiger,” I missed both at the same time.

Next post: Iron Maiden- Number of the Beast

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Great Metal Albums of 1982: Riot- Restless Breed

Posted in 1980s, Heavy Metal, Heavy Metal and the 1980s, Music, Rock, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 30, 2015 by 80smetalman


Having reread my post for the previous Riot album, “Fire Down Under,” I realise that I did post a picture of RATT when I meant to post a picture of the band Riot. Therefore, I have come to the executive decision that I will no longer use google images when I post pictures of albums or bands. Instead, I will use the site which actually takes getting its facts right seriously. Enough of that now, let’s get to another great album from Riot that I should not have waited til the late 80s to listen to.

Again, after listening to the 1982 offering from Riot, “Restless Breed,” I am again asking why this band didn’t have more commercial success. As I listened to the album, I could hear songs that, in my mind, influenced some of the bands that came after and had more success. For instance, the track “C.I.A.” sounds like something that WASP would have done and “When I Was Young” reminds me a little of Y & T. However, Riot was around long before either of these bands were so they drew influence from Riot. Saying that, I could hear a little Judas Priest influence in “When I was Young” as well. However, the rest of the album is straight ahead no frills heavy metal, the way heavy metal was supposed to be played.

“Hard Lovin’ Man” may not be the greatest song in the world to open an album but it does the job in preparing the way for the rest of the album. It may have influenced WASP but “C.I.A.” is still a brilliant song and the next one “Restless Breed” is even better. The middle of the order on the album is for me, the strongest. The songs “When I Was Young,” “Loanshark” and “Loved by You” are the stand outs for me. The latter has one of those catchy choruses where you are still singing it long after the album has finished and you are three miles down the road in the car. They are just loveable rockers. And the best guitar solo goes to the next track, “Over to You.” “Slow Down” is the token ballad on the album but it’s not bad with some good guitar work on it. Things return to normal with the last two songs. “Dream Away” sounds like it might be another ballad but don’t let the title fool you. It has that Southern rock boogie vibe to it and the closer, “Violent Crimes” ends things very nicely. All in all, “Restless Breed” by Riot is one I should have had on cassette blasting out of the car as I cruised down the road.

Track Listing:

  1. Hard Lovin’ Man
  2. C.I.A.
  3. Restless Breed
  4. When I was Young
  5. Loanshark
  6. Loved By You
  7. Over to You
  8. Slow Down
  9. Dream Away
  10. Violent Crimes
Riot (and this time it actually is them)

Riot (and this time it actually is them)

Rhett Forester- vocals, harmonica

Mark Reale- guitar

Rick Ventura- guitar

Kip Leming- bass

Sandy Slavin- drums

Let me venture a theory on why Riot didn’t get the notoriety they so richly deserved back in the day. I think that people were so caught up in the new wave of British heavy metal (NWOBHM) that possibly American metal bands got pushed to one side. Whatever, the case, Riot was a band who rocked and those who were fortunate to listen to them can vouch for it.

Next post: Y & T- Black Tiger

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Also available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Froogle and on sale at Foyles Book Shop in London