It's been more than a decade since the last Ratt
studio album. Stephen Pearcy is back as the band's vocalist, and their fan base from the '80s has continue to go to their concerts. Since they haven't had a hit for nearly twenty years, there's a danger Ratt could be seen as a nostalgia act content to play their old material. Infestation
blows that premise right out of the water (or in Ratt's case, the cellar).
hearkens back to the band's glory days, with songs that match up with the best of their '80s canon. “Eat Me Up Alive” kicks things off with big hooks, a catchy chorus and sleazy riffs. “Best Of Me” continues the momentum and is also very memorable. New guitarist Carlos Cavazo fits in perfectly, and has the chops to keep up with original axeman Warren DeMartini. The rhythm section of original drummer Bobby Blotzerand bassist Robbie Crane (who has been in the band for almost 15 years now) is rock solid.
The whole album is packed with Ratt's patented musical style and Pearcy's distinctive vocals. He may have lost a little range over the years, but his raspy vocals are still strong, and make Ratt instantly identifiable. He's most comfortable on the fast songs like “Lost Weekend” and “Garden Of Eden” , but is also able to pull off ballads like “Take Me Home.”
After hearing CDs from other bands that tried to come back after a lengthy absence, I didn't have high expectations for Infestation, but hoped they could at least approach their classic sound. I was really impressed with how it turned out, and how the band managed to recapture the vibe of their best material. Those who grew up with Ratt back in the day have (hopefully) abandoned the mullets, and probably have grown up jobs, families and responsibilities. That doesn't mean they can't open the windows of the minivan, crank up the stereo, and lose themselves in some good old Ratt 'n roll.
(released April 20, 2010 by Roadrunner Records)
Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy