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Reach for the Sky

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  • By C.S.Hair metal 1980’s style is often criticized but filled a carloads of individuals who have little or no knowledge of the genre. One of the bright spots on a seemingly mythical dark tale that is often told about 80’s rock are the Los Angeles, California outfit known as Ratt. With so much competition in the area – Motley Crue Dokken,and the already established Van Halen to choose from and to rock out to,it would seem impossible to gain a foothold of originality in this over- crowded marketplace.With the cannonfire like drum beat and sound of Bobby Blotzer, the raspy and rough vocals of Stephen Pearcy, the dual guitar attack of Robbin Crosby (rhythm) and Warren De Martini (lead) combo and the penetratingly solid bass playing of Juan Crouchier (a former Dokken memeber),Ratt created a balanced metal sound . The bass like tonation of Blotzer and Crouchier work in poisionous tandem with Crosby and De Marini on “Reach” and they strike a smooth balance – no one group of musicians overwhelm the other in the playing and recording process, making ‘Reach For he Sky” a gem based on production alone. Blotzer begins the assault with a funk -filled double bass-drum beat that fuels “City To City”, while De Martini sprinkles the ingredients of wailing guitar riff on top of Pearchy’s opening screams and Crosby’s vicious co – lead on “I Want A Woman”. The next track “Way Cool Jr” is record company driven, elementary school pop all the way as a early resting point after the fast start created by the opening tracks.. The band step back into the club after a couple of drinks and set the tempo again with Blotzer opening up the floodgates for the reamaining musicians to jump over and in with his potent snare drum poops, slick cymbal/ hi- hat work, and stop on a dime breaks in pace on “Don’t Bite The Hand That Feeds “”Playing to the female auduence that fuels the industry, the boys hit the ballad button on “I Want To Love You Tonite”.In stark comparison to the blatant commercialism of “Way Cool”, the polished harmonies, smooth beat and polished craftiness of De Martini’s solo over a tone setting rhyhtm riff by Crosby make for a more honest representation of how the band can work it’s magic in slow- down mode. “Chain Reaction is “Reach For The Sky’s version of “Communication Breakdown” with it’s Motley Crue like break neck tempo capped by Pearcy’s suggestive line- “the only thing that sets me off will bring you to your knees”If unconvinced or partially sold on the merits of Ratt the funky ‘No Surprise” with it’s backing vocal intro. heavy De Martini riff and avalanche of an intrusion by Blotzer with his opening beats make a strong case for crowd favorite in tandem with the stop and go,hard edged flow of “Bottom Line” where Blotzer fills in space beautifully around the exploits of his talented bandmates and wakes up the neighbors with his cymbal crashes and snap of the wrist drum rolls on ” What’s It Gonna Be” hi- lighted by the army of guitars gathered up by Crosby and De Martini that make for an rock- anthem flavored closing solo. Though Pearcy and the gang may always be regarded as little or nothing songwriters, the pieces fall in place on “Reach For The Sky” in smoother symmetry than the spotty hit and miss nature of the previous LP “Dancing UnderCover”. This is Ratt N’ Roll arguably at it’s best, making ‘Reach For The Sky” one of their top two or three albums and a worthy five star ranking.C.S. 2-9- 04

    Posted on January 23, 2010