Quiet Riot

Quiet Riot II

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The second of Quiet Riot's virtually forgotten late-'70s albums for CBS Japan, the appropriately named Quiet Riot II would also be their last with founding guitarist Randy Rhoads. Released at the height of disco mania and very hard to find in America (the band's own L.A. fan base had to buy it on import at the time -- bummer), it was certainly a much more confident effort than their amateurish debut of a year before, but it still paled in comparison to the future sonic and commercial achievements of the mid-'80s QR, and especially Rhoads' work with Ozzy Osbourne. Ironically, QRII's explosive first track is none other than "Slick Black Cadillac," the only track from this period worthy of resurrection for their breakthrough Metal Health album five years later. The remainder of the album reveals the group as a work in progress, and is peppered with occasional bright spots, including the '70s glam rock of "Eye for an Eye," the competent ballad "Afterglow (Of Your Love)," and the especially well-formed "Trouble." Most interesting of all, however, these tracks show singer Kevin DuBrow and Rhoads truly coming into their own. The first displays growing confidence to go with his already potent pair of lungs, and the second is already developing his idiosyncratic six-string style with the first touches of the classically inflected virtuosity which would make him a legend two years later. Still, this album is a relic for devout musical archaeologists only.

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