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RIOT- Outlaw, c/w Rock city (live) 7″ (Elektra, USA, 1981)

Listen, I know what you’re thinking. “What the hell is this?! This 7″ never had this sleeve!” And you’re totally right being surprised. So was I when I found me a promotional copy of RIOT‘s “Fire down under” LP, bearing a sticker which said that this would include the bonus 7″. I can only speak for myself, of course, but I’ve had no idea about an initial press of the band’s by far best album,  containing a bonus 7″.

I’ve always been under the impression that RIOT was a NWOBHM band and although being from N.Y. and having put together in 1975 already, this is isn’t totally non-accurate to suppose. The first two albums were good, solid, a bit AC/DC influenced Hardrock. Back in my teenage years, I used to fancy the 2nd LP, “Narita”, but to tell the truth, it sounded a bit too tame to me. That’s maybe why I made the mistake to never check out the follow-up, “Fire down under” (which I order you to buy right now! CD edition available). Almost two years in the making and recorded in the winter of 1980, it first must have seemed like a nightmare to the band when their record company Capitol turned the recordings down: “Totally unacceptable” was the verdict, “too heavy!”. And indeed, “Fire down under” (on which a longer version of “Outlaw” appears) is of a different caliber than the two previous albums. Heavy riffing, sometimes fast and always very memorable and thrilling. Songs like “Feel the same”, although balladesque, have a really dark and somewhat existential feeling (don’t laugh, but for some reason I always think of the Dead Boys when I hear this particular song). And all in all, RIOT sound exactly like every NWOBHM out-of-the-garage band wanted to sound: Clean, tight and with a great, great singer (who died in 2003).
RIOT broke up in 1983 and came back with a great album, called “Thundersteel” in 1988. You might want to keep your eyes open for that one too.

Rock City (live).mp3

Those who “like” Goodbadmusic on Facebook have seen this already, but it’s too great to be missed here. My fave song from “Fire down under” and a heartwarming live performance:


  1. J. Low

    I’d say I need the album! Otherwise I cannot call myself a Rock ‘n Roll Waschweib anymore! Anyway, great music, great cover (a human seal, haha – what would Heidi Klum say?).


    Posted on 19-May-11 at 18:06 | Permalink
  2. hoast

    just been thinking.. if Krokus disbanded after one vice.., they would have this kind of cult follwing, too… hard ro imagine this was considered too heavy .. but then there was a time when Booker T and the MG caused Riots..


    Posted on 19-May-11 at 18:28 | Permalink
  3. Nigel

    Thank you sir. Fantastic!


    Posted on 19-May-11 at 18:34 | Permalink
  4. J. Low

    Just found the LP in the www for 5 bucks. Sometimes the gods are with me…


    Posted on 19-May-11 at 22:14 | Permalink
  5. elliott

    erich, sorry for being MIA around here. always thought riot were a glam band for some reason. this is really good stuff and i will buy that lp. good stuff erich!


    Posted on 20-May-11 at 05:07 | Permalink
  6. Laszlo

    AMAZING and the “Fire Down Under” Lp is one of the BEST HEAVY METAL albums of all time! RIP Speranza!


    Posted on 20-May-11 at 08:50 | Permalink
  7. howardx

    always preferred narita myself, saw them open for boc and black sabbath some years ago…


    Posted on 20-May-11 at 16:35 | Permalink
  8. Is this the band that did “Swords and Tequila”? I used to love that song.


    Admin Reply:

    That’s the one, Dave!


    Posted on 21-May-11 at 04:01 | Permalink
  9. the rager

    One of the best U.S. Heavy Metal Lp of all time…. I usqed to listen to it all day long back when it was released… specialised radio show (national radio) played almost all of it back then, never happened for another album! It was THAT GOOD! Not forgetting “Restless Breed” with Rhett or “thundersteel” (a MONSTER) with Tony on vocals… Sheer brilliance!


    Posted on 22-May-11 at 16:50 | Permalink
  10. Pär Arvidsson

    Fantastic of corpse, I used to have a tape with Fire down under on one side and If you want blood on the other. Might be the tape that I´ve played the most of all taped I´ve owned.


    Posted on 25-May-11 at 07:24 | Permalink


    Posted on 26-Jan-12 at 16:00 | Permalink
  12. thomas

    Congratz, Dr. Music!

    Now you deserve some recreation:


    Posted on 30-Sep-13 at 14:38 | Permalink

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