Quiet Riot - Road Rage review


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Band: Quiet Riot
Album: Road Rage
Release date: August 2017

01. Can't Get Enough
02. Getaway
03. Roll This Joint
04. Freak Flag
05. Wasted
06. Still Wild
07. Make A Way
08. Renegades
09. The Road
10. Shame
11. Knock Em Down

I remember when Quiet Riot was a gaudy spandex sweat stain of a glam band waving in the toxic breeze of the Sunset Strip, earning its weekly paycheck by riding on the dwindling coattails of Randy Rhoads's brief captaincy and fortuitously hacked-up versions of great songs from a better band. How I long for those days.

To be more specific, I don't remember that, as I happened not to be alive at that point in history, but I do still remember Quiet Riot before this dumpster fire belched forth from a widening crack in the asphalt somewhere between Los Angeles and Babylon. I was beginning to wonder where I would find my least favorite album of the year, and I suspect I may have found it in Road Rage, an eerie reminder of how cruel time has been to the bloated carcasses of hair metal bands that may still be found poking through the trash heaps and pawn shops of the underground music scene. If there is one class of metal band that can still be labeled sadder than geriatric NWOBHM middleweights crawling back for a low-volume, 20-year-late comeback nobody asked for, it's these destabilizing glam guys who don't realize that the road ran out and the party ended back in the early '90s, but I guess Snakes N' Barrels has to be a parody of something.

I don't know what part of this album was supposed to impress me, but the talented Frankie Banali seems to have slept through Road Rage, and all the other members worth listening to have long since departed or died. While even the Quiet Riot of the mid-'80s could be expected to produce at least one decent song per release, the best this album gets is certain parts of a few songs; nothing is great all the way through. Give a 10-year-old a guitar and two minutes to write a hard rock song and you'll find a similar level of artistic insight. The demo-quality production is only the icing on the shark sandwich. The vocals sit on top of the instruments, which, for their part, are sickeningly muffled, and the assembled elements blend barely or not at all. The production quality is absolutely abysmal, garage-level abysmal; it only furthers the image of a band too frazzled and/or behind the times to deliver on the level of party that it promises. If at any point I find a song getting a little too catchy or inspired, I can always count on the razor-thin sound, suffocatingly mundane solos, and occasionally flat vocals to drag me back into reality.

The band's new vocalist, James Durbin, is a former contestant on American Idol, placing fourth in the show's tenth season; while his pinch of celebrity makes it a curiosity that he found his way to Quiet Riot, it's not terribly surprising. He professed a harder and heavier background than most who find their way onto such shows, and if you've seen the videos of him singing Dio karaoke in a bar, you'll agree that there's promise in the lad - but not here. His voice has an extremely youthful and pure sound that sometimes clashes with Quiet Riot's aesthetic and sets him apart from Kevin DuBrow, who, whatever he may have used it for, possessed a strong and appropriately sleazy voice. More damningly, Durbin's performance lacks passion, but then, so do these undercooked rotters. I can't blame the guy for not being invested in modern classics like "Roll This Joint" and "Freak Flag."

Cliché-ridden, noncommittal, and about as sharp and dangerous as a bowl of lukewarm butter, Road Rage is just a puddle of mute guitars and whimpering choruses. Any pretender to the title of "Road Rage" ought to have a little more Mad Max spirit and less of The Bus That Couldn't Slow Down.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 6
Songwriting: 4
Originality: 3
Production: 3


Written on 03.10.2017 by I'm the reviewer, and that means my opinion is correct.


Comments: 14   Visited by: 203 users
03.10.2017 - 20:59
Doit Like Bernie
Is this worth listening to once for the awfulness, or does it surpass so-bad-it's-good territory and land into true, unredeeming trash?
03.10.2017 - 21:15
Written by Marcus on 03.10.2017 at 20:59

Is this worth listening to once for the awfulness, or does it surpass so-bad-it's-good territory and land into true, unredeeming trash?

I think it's possible to stomach a few songs as entertainment. It's not really the kind of album that will immediately make you retch and fall to your knees; it's just riddled with bad decisions.
Row, row, fight the power
Djently down the stream

I'm the Agent of Steel.
04.10.2017 - 00:09
An album with that cover art can't be good anyway
Don't cry for my English
04.10.2017 - 02:32
Boxcar Willy
yr a kook
Holy fuck this is absolutely awful. This literally sounds like how you'd imagine Quiet Riot sounding with all the members being 65 years old.
Checkout my band here!
04.10.2017 - 02:33
Boxcar Willy
yr a kook

Jesus Christ.
Checkout my band here!
04.10.2017 - 07:46
Lord Slothrop
Written by Boxcar Willy on 04.10.2017 at 02:33

Jesus Christ.

Wow. Just wow.
04.10.2017 - 10:43
That's pretty awful, but seems to sum up succinctly why I have never liked that brand of hard rock/metal. I would have thought that this outdated cliché ridden pap would be right up Frontiers Record's street, mind...
First gig was Manowar (loincloths 'n' all), Bristol Colston Hall in March 1983, on the 'Hail to England' tour. Tickets were £3.75, 300 in the audience, Mercyful Fate never showed, but my hearing still got seriously trashed..
04.10.2017 - 14:28
My god his voice is annoying. This is probably too bad to be funny bad.
05.10.2017 - 00:57
Bad English
I agree whit rating it fits good into this one.
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
07.10.2017 - 07:31
Written by Boxcar Willy on 04.10.2017 at 02:33

Jesus Christ.

Oh God, the intro was inoffensive enough and then the vocals came in and I just broke down laughing.
07.10.2017 - 12:07
Au Pays Natal
Written by Boxcar Willy on 04.10.2017 at 02:32

Holy fuck this is absolutely awful. This literally sounds like how you'd imagine Quiet Riot sounding with all the members being 65 years old.

Some bands need to just give it up. I read Morbid Angel are coming out with a new album. Fans of that band are expecting the worse.
07.10.2017 - 20:43
The guitars could be alright on their own, the singing could also work with the right instrumentals, but those were clearly not written for the same song
and that drummer is just completely useless, a copy&paste electronic beat would give the same effect
Written by Warman on 07.11.2007 at 22:39
Haha, that's like saying "compose your own Metal album and upload it here, instead of writing a review of an album". :lol:
11.10.2017 - 04:13
Doc G.
Full Grown Hoser
Fuck me, that is some dreadful shit. They probably could have made a better album by just recording the sound of Kevin Dubrows decaying corpse being thrown down a flight of stairs.
"I got a lot of really good ideas, problem is, most of them suck."
- George Carlin
12.10.2017 - 13:44
Old Nick
I feel for you for having to go through this nightmare in order to write a review.
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