Ratt

Reach for the Sky

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Although often targeted as one of the worst offenders in the much maligned hair metal scene of the '80s, Ratt's distinctive sonic signatures and generally high level of musicianship are often overlooked. Granted, the lyrics are usually vacuous and the music doesn't possess much staying power as the years go by, but, as pop-metal bands go, Ratt were better than most of their peers. Guitarist Warren DeMartini, in particular, is responsible for some of the most memorable riffs and most masterful solos of the genre. Ratt's fourth album, Reach for the Sky, wisely follows the same formula of the three records that preceded it, yielding some of the band's best material, along with the usual amount of filler. They scored a minor hit with "Way Cool Jr.," (which flaunts a groove Aerosmith would be proud of), and tracks like "City to City" and "No Surprise" also emphasize the band's strengths. But stuff like "I Want a Woman" and "Chain Reaction" demonstrate singer Stephen Pearcy's unfortunate inclination toward dumb rock clich├ęs, a component of Ratt that consistently undermines the musical achievements of the band.

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