Ratt – Infestation (2010, Roadrunner Records/Loud & Proud Records)
1. “Eat Me Up Alive”… 4:13
2. “Best Of Me” … 4:19
3. “A Little Too Much” … 4:05
4. “Look Out Below” … 3:44
5. “Last Call” … 3:55
6. “Lost Weekend” … 3:46
7. “As Good As It Gets” … 4:38
8. “Garden Of Eden” … 3:03
9. “Take A Big Bite” … 2:46
10. “Take Me Home” … 4:23
11. “Don’t Let Go” … 3:22
Stephen Pearcy – Lead vocals
Warren DeMartini – Guitar, Backing Vocals
Carlos Cavazo – Guitar, Backing Vocals
Robbie Crane – Bass
Bobby Blotzer – Drums
Producer: Michael “Elvis” Baskette
Wow, when did Roadrunner Records become so cool? They used to be a safe haven for post-grunge and nu-metal acts (and really, they still are). Now, not only do they have KISS, Megadeth, Sammy Hagar, Dream Theater, Airbourne, Slash, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Rob Zombie signed to various deals but Ratt as well!
I had been looking forward to this album for a long time. In fact, it’s been one of my most anticipated releases for 2010. There are times where you can predict an album’s quality before it comes out. A time when you have a “feeling” before hearing the first note. My “feeling” was right about Chickenfoot, wrong about Slash but I was right once again for Ratt. I was feelin’ good vibes, man, over the idea of some new Ratt music.
For fans of Ratt’s early albums, Infestation will not let you down. It is a conscious effort to relive the glory days of Out of the Cellar and Invasion of Your Privacy. Personally, I enjoy all of Ratt’s albums (well, I haven’t bothered with their 1999 self-title due to so many poor reviews I’ve read), even the glossed up sounds of Detonator, which I think is underrated. But Infestation leaves the polish at home and gets back to filthy sleazy Ratt ‘n’ roll.
Despite whatever live concert reports may say, I think Stephen Pearcy sounds just as good as ever on tape (of course, technology has improved too!). The only thing that’s lacking from band performance is there just doesn’t seem to be enough spotlight shining on Warren DeMartini. Maybe I’m crazy but I just don’t think he had a strong enough presence on the album. That’s a minor quibble though.
The album starts off great with a pair of classic sounding Ratt songs: “Eat Me Up Alive” and “Best of Me”. “Best of Me” is my favorite song on the album and it’s the lead single. New Ratt pack member Carlos Cavazo (ex-Quiet Riot) actually wrote the majority of that song so he’s already off to fitting in with Ratt because it sounds exactly like old school Ratt.
The rest of the album keeps up with the band’s mid ’80s heyday delivering one dirty rocker after another. The album’s sole slow moment is “Take Me Home”, which is definitely the weakest track and possibly the weakest Ratt song I’ve heard to date. It sounds like the album’s lone effort to sound modern. I wouldn’t be surprised to see this as the next single, if they release a second single. I love the string arrangement but it’s the first half of the song that ruins the whole track for me.
Overall, this is a more than worthy addition to the Ratt catalog. I’m not sure where I’d rank it yet though. It’s still too fresh and I love their previous efforts so much but this is an album definitely worth checking out for Ratt fans. It will not disappoint.
I ordered my copy from Roadrunner’s website a few weeks before the release. With the pre-order you immediately got a digital download copy of “Eat Me Up Alive” and the album arrived with an extra CD booklet signed by the band! How cool is that?
Highlights: “Eat Me Up Alive”, “Best Of Me”, “Look Out Below”, “Last Call”, “Lost Weekend”, “As Good As It Gets”