Quiet Riot – Guilty Pleasures (2001, Bodyguard)
- Vicious Circle
- Feel The Pain
- Rock The House
- Shadow Of Love
- I Can’t Make You Love Me
- Feed The Machine
- Guilty Pleasures
- Blast From The Past
- Let Me Be The One
- Street Fighter
- Fly Too High
Total Time – 50:49
Out of nowhere, Quiet Riot releases their best album since CONDITION CRITICAL. Eleven songs by the reunited band that take a step back to the past, creating an ’80s style Hard Rock party album. Sing-a-long choruses, guitar solos, gang background vocals, melody and power…..the makings of a great album. What is unique about this album is that the band writes in some old parts into the new music: the title of an album or song within the lyrics, a drum intro/pattern that sounds very similar to one from an earlier album, guitar melodies and riffs that were primary pieces of early classics. The songs are well written, fun, and stick in your mind.
‘Vicious Circle’ kickstarts the album into high gear right off the bat with it’s pounding drums and electrified riffs. I like the vocal enhancement DuBrow uses in parts of the song to give a deeper, sinister sound to his vocal, then it kicks back into the trademark scream. A definite fist-pounder, Banali’s drums really set the tone. This was the set opener for their slot on the Summer tour with Poison. The guitar into to ‘Feel The Pain’ reminds me of something from QR III but it the song quickly kicks into a mid-tempo groove that recalls AC/DC. The guitar has that big synthesized sound at times but it’s just multi-tracked, it just has that big sound. Another song from the live set.
‘Rock The House’ is the first single and was basically created to be this album’s ‘Cum On Feel The Noize’, it’s anthem. Complete with a similar drum intro with Kevin kicking in the chorus over the top, I also detect a small guitar fill that sounds all too familiar. It’s a good party song but a little predictable, sing the lyrics to ‘Cum On Feel The Noize’ over the music and you’ll get the point. ‘Shadow Of Love’, keeps the album moving along with it’s fast pace. I really like this song but I can’t help thinking it would also fit on Judas Priest’s POINT OF ENTRY album.
Four ’80s styled rockers in a row means ballad time. ‘I Can’t Make You Love Me’ is an average track. It has a powerful sound but I think it feeds off the rest of the album and gets lumped in with the good rather than the bad. Not bad but missing something. Back to the party with ‘Feed The Machine’. A very catchy song with a little more of those DuBrow enhancements like ‘Vicious Circle’. The title track is the best song on the album and another concert staple. I really like the funky guitar and bass and this is by far the catchiest song on the record, the chorus sticking in your head well after the album’s over. Another vintage anthem with ‘Blast From The Past’, the band making no bones about sounding dated. Great song with a guitar riff that steals a part from ‘Party All Night’.
Ballad #2, ‘Let Me Be The One’, is a little better but still average. It gets a pass because it’s surounded by the fun songs. ‘Street Fighter’ is the closest thing to Speed Metal that Quiet Riot will get. It’s the fastest song on the album, employing a chugging guitar but it’s not up to par with the rest of the uptempo songs. It’s like it is fast just to be fast. ‘Fly Too High’ is this album’s answer to ‘Thunderbird’ as far as pace and style, making ballad #3 a success. The cool thing is that the song’s verses are a slower version of ‘Metal Health’. Listen to the song and sing the words to ‘Metal Health’, they fit.
It sounds dated, it sounds too familiar, it sounds like it came from the early ’80s……but that is exactly what makes the album great. Quiet Riot have come full circle tight back to their party Metal roots that made them household names. Well worth the money if ’80s Hard Rock is your thing. Favorite songs: ‘Guilty Pleasures’, ‘Vicious Circle’, ‘Feed The Machine’, ‘Feel The Pain’, ‘Blast From The Past’. I saw the tour three times and the songs really translate well to the live show. I pull this album out regularly and I find myself singing the songs even after the album ends, it’s that type of music.