It seems that for years, fans of the MTV Headbanger’s Ball generation have been crying out for the return of hard rock music, big name tour packages and the songs of yore that rattled speakers and made parents scream “Turn That Shit Down!” The Summer of 2014 has done more than calm the masses, it’s riled the troops and brought fans out from all points on the map to welcome the one thing they’ve been begging for … it’s the Bang Your Head Tour featuring Gilby Clarke(Guns n’Roses), the BulletBoys, Faster Pussycat and one of the busiest bands today playing legendary music that marked an era – Quiet Riot triumphantly headlining.
The tour launched in Southern California with three show dates that instantly spiked FM radio interest as well as magazine mention and has continued on with dozens upon dozens of shows scheduled across the United States throughout the summer. It’s been over three years since Quiet Riot announced they were reassembling, after the passing of front man Kevin DuBrow, and touring was just the start of it. Through the diligent work of drummer Frankie Banali, a key member of the band’s career history, the result has become an all-star line-up that brings the music of the legendary band back to fans in the fashion hard rock has always been delivered, that is … Loud and Proud!
On bass guitar, Quiet Riot features Los Angeles bassist Chuck Wright, the man behind the low end of Quiet Riot’s signature song Metal Health and as featured on the band’s album titled QR III, which scored number 20 on the US Billboard Hot 200 in 1986. Wright was also a founding member of 80’s era staples, Giuffriaand House of Lords and has performed on top selling albums for artists including Impellitterri, Doro Pesch (alongside Tommy Thayer of KISS), Matt Sorum(Guns n’ Roses), Stephen Pearcy (RATT), Saints of the Underground (with Jani Lane) and the hit-list holiday issued discs by Northern Lights Orchestra that brings together some of the most prominent artists in the hard rock realm.
Quiet Riot’s guitarist is Alex Grossi, an artist who has both appeared and recorded with a multitude of star acts including Adler’s Appetite, Bang Tango and alongside former Quiet Riot vocalist Kevin DuBrow during the years he performed solo as well as on the 2006 Quiet Riot release titled Rehab. Grossi’s repertoire includes having written with key artists including Jani Lane (Warrant), Dizzy Reed and Gilby Clarke separately (both of Guns n’ Roses fame) and has recorded on more than a dozen high profile projects.
Lead vocals for the band might have been a hard sell on fans, as the world is well aware of the unique high end and out front style that was signature to Kevin DuBrow and that led a generation of teens to develop a movement of hard rock revelry that continues to exist today. Truth be told, there are few who could do more than just sing along, but who could actually do justice to the original songs as recorded by DuBrow himself. Enter front man and media sensation Jizzy Pearl, formerly of Love/Hate and having performed with bands including RATT and Adler’s Appetite. Pearl’s well respected range, stage performances and ability to be creative on the fly made him the most suitable option for doing more than just recreating a recognized sound; it brought a new life to the band that has since spawned a new generation of fans that continues the legacy of what some media outlets have referred to as a cornerstone in the foundation upon which the MTVgeneration was built.
All of this creates a show of it’s own, but the Bang Your Head Tour features the above mentioned circus of talents as just the headlining slot. As captured by music journalist Joe Dolan during the performance at the World Famous Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills, it was a long toss back to the era of distorted guitars and driving drumbeats from the minute the curtain went up until Quiet Riot took the stage.
Opening the show was multi-instrumentalist, singer and songwriter Gilby Clarke alongside E.J. Curse, the founding bass player from the band Silent Rage. TheGilby Clarke Band, performing as a trio, knocked the ball out of the park with seven stellar songs that tied the sound of 80’s hard rock in to the blues laden solos that tickled attendees of Guns n’ Roses shows throughout the Use Your Illusion tour. Never failing to play the fan favorite, Tijuana Jail, the band warmed the audience and brought the stragglers in to their seats to see exactly how rock and roll is played on a big stage.
Next on stage was a band that has weathered the tide of genre changes in music, the BulletBoys, who scored two songs in the US Main Rock Charts in the top 30’s in 1989. The band had just released a new single off their forthcoming full length release titled Elefante and received airplay on a major market FM station in San Diego that morning with the first official on-air spin of their tune just hours before show time. This tour reunites singer Marq Torien with fellow founding member, bassist Lonnie Vencent as well as supports the new CD release. Over the course of 40 minutes on stage, the band introduced their new track and ran through some fan favorites including the chart topping Smooth Up In Ya that attendees demanded and sang along with note for note.
When Faster Pussycat took the stage, it wasn’t a far cry at all from the show that took the glam metal era by storm in the late 80’s. Though the band featuresTaime Downe as the only original member, it’s his nasally drone that the audience has connected with on hit singles including Bathroom Wall and the US Main Rock charting song House Of Pain that was replayed consistently in 1990 on MTV. The audience crowded the stage with iPhones and cameras when they performed and during the hour they stomped around on the raised platform, attendees were witness to a set list of songs that for the most part, they knew by heart.
By the time Quiet Riot took the stage, the show had already proven, beyond a reasonable doubt, that hard rock was back and touring with a vengeance. This alone, however, is only part of the news that has grabbed attention of Quiet Riot fans in 2014. Earlier in the year, Frankie Banali announced the release of the anticipated film titled Now You’re here, There’s No Way Back. The film features a deep and intrinsic look into the facts related to the history of the band and it details key moments that many long time fans weren’t aware of, as well as documenting the moments that made them a celebrated band and secured their place in the history of American hard rock.
Adding to a year that has re-established the band, just before the start of the tour, Quiet Riot released a new album featuring six tracks with Jizzy Pearl on vocals and four previously unreleased songs from live performances featuring Kevin DuBrow. Titled 10, the album became available on June 27th, 2014 to rave reviews. It marks the next chapter in the career of these artists that have entertained millions worldwide for decades, and celebrates the achievements of Kevin DuBrow, one of rocks finest front men, a stellar songwriter and an artist who was consistently at the top of his game.
Follow Quiet Riot online at their official website to learn about the tour coming to an area near you, to purchase the new album 10 or to find out when you can own a copy of the new film.