RATT! Back For More With Great White

Ratt Back for MoreWhile RATT may be “Back For More” something tells me the drama of RATT is far from over.  Bobby Blotzer doesn’t come off as one who’ll lick his legal wounds and go away quietly.  But for now, the RATT name is attached to a band that at the very least seems authentic.  And like any band proclaiming their triumphant return, they came to Minnesota in February.  Bringing along a band that knows a thing or two about legal battles and controversies with former members, Great White.

Having settled their own differences some time ago Great White no doubt had their own war stories to share with Warren, Stephen, and Juan.  And while the drama can be fun fodder for those in my position, tonight was all about the rock

Great White brought their version of the rock show opening with “I’ve Got Something for You”  before launching right into “Desert Moon” from the Hooked album.  They may not bring the recent drama like RATT but Great White came to rock and sounded pretty Goddamn good.  Singer Terry Ilous from XYZ fame seems to have settled into his role as the lead singer of Great White.  Initially, he seemed an odd fit as he is such a different singer but seeing the band now I’m guessing that was by design.  Guitarist Mark Kendall was always one of the genre’s unheralded greats.  Which is a crime because he smokes.

They filled their one hour set with a bulk of their bluesy-rock hits from the 80’s and early 90’s you’d anticipate.  Played to perfection.  Then at one point, Ilous injured his lower right leg somehow.  I couldn’t make out if it was his calf or ankle but he was noticeably limping and utilizing the crutch-like characteristics the mic stand provided.  Whatever it was it eventually loosened up a bit but his mobility was clearly hampered the rest of the night.  Regardless he powered through as Great White left the capacity crowd in a mood to rock as they closed with their biggest track “Once Bitten Twice Shy”.

Returning for the first time since reclaiming their rights to the name RATT was original members Warren DiMartini, Stephen Pearcy and Juan Croucier with longtime rhythm guitarist and Quiet Riot alum Carlos Cavazo and new addition Jimmy Degrasso, who has played with just about everyone.  He takes over the drum throne that Bobby Blotzer drunkenly Facebook-posted himself out of.  With all that has transpired, just watching them walk on stage carried a certain credibility with it.  How would they fare?

Pretty fucking good.  Even better based on the crowd’s reception to one the 80’s finest.  The one criticism that recurs when talking about RATT is the vocals of Stephen Pearcy.  He has a reputation of being sketchy live.  I’ll tell you this.  For the first six songs he gets an A.  Not only was he spot on vocally, but he was just fucking cool.  The rest of the night?…  The swagger never left but vocally he bounced between a C- and a B-.  At times he seemed to strain like an untrained singer would.  Big picture.  This is RATT.  And Bobby should’ve been here.  COULD’VE been here.  But he dug his own grave and this band is what the fans want and deserve.  Not a Vegas cover band.

While at times it was clear there was a little rust being shaken off, the moment Warren DiMartini walked onstage and started “Wanted Man”, any missteps were subtle.  Playing maybe his most classic Charvel the entire night, it truly was a privilege to watch how seamlessly he performs.  But the unsung hero of the night had to be bassist Juan Croucier.  Not just delivering the classic bass lines and backing vocals.  A slimmer Juan prowled the stage like it was 1986.  He was just… fun!  Welcome back, Juan.

There weren’t any surprises in the fifteen song setlist.  Which was expected.  But ending at just over 75 minutes with no encore seemed odd all things considered.  First show back.  In middle of Minnesota.  Still, RATT kicked ass.  This night in the heart of farm country Minnesota in February served as a class reunion of sorts.  The Class of 84′ metal.  And a message to the world that the last year was just a mirage.  RATT, the real RATT, is back.  Back For More according to Pearcy.  Just in time by the looks of it.

Great White Setlist:

(I’ve Got) Something For You

Desert Moon

Lady Red Light

House Of Broken Love

Save Your Love

Mista Bone

Big Goodbye

Can’t Shake It

Rock Me

Once Bitten Twice Shy

 

RATT Setlist:

Wanted Man

Dangerous But Worth The Risk

You Think You’re Tough

Walkin’ The Dog

Way Cool Jr.

I’m Insane

In Your Direction

Lack Of Communication

Lay It Down

You’re In Love

Lovin’ You’s A Dirty Job

Nobody Rides For Free

Body Talk

Back For More

Round And Round

Great White Official / Great White Facebook / Great White Twitter / Great White Instagram

RATT Official / RATT Twitter

bakko@decibelgeek.com

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COMMENTS

  • Rick

    Awesome show! Going to a Ratt show with Pearcy singing you know what your gonna get, it is not a classically trained singer. That said it was still a great time. Both bands kicked ass and genuinely seemed to have a great time! As did the fans. Was lucky enough to see them both in Hollywood on the MORC! Both bands brought it both times!

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