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Articles Home » 1983 Articles » Quiet Riot - 1983 Metal Health
Quiet Riot - 1983 Metal Health

ARTIST: Quiet Riot
ALBUM: Metal Health
LABEL: Pasha
SERIAL: FZ 38443
YEAR: 1983
CD REISSUE: 1986, Pasha, ZK 38443 * 2001, Sony, EK 85779 * 2012, Rock Candy Records (UK), CANDY145


LINEUP: Kevin Dubrow - vocals * Carlos Cavazo - guitars * Rudy Szarzo - bass * Frankie Banali - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Metal Health * 02 Cum On Feel The Noize * 03 Don't Wanna Let You Go * 04 Slick Black Cadillac * 05 Love's A Bitch * 06 Breathless * 07 Run For Cover * 08 Battle Axe * 09 Let's Get Crazy * 10 Thunderbird

Where were you in 1983? What do you remember from that year? Musically of course, it was the year of Michael Jackson, Prince, Phil Collins, Men At Work, nothwithstanding The Police and Journey. Let's not forget L.A metallers Quiet Riot, who reinvented themselves and became megastars during that year if only briefly. With their third album 'Metal Health', the band struck favour from everywhere. Sound Magazine described it as one of the most important albums of the era (you'll know why by the end of this review). They were seen on Solid Gold lip-synching their way to metallic glory, and they displaced the all conquering The Police at the top of the pop charts before years end. The album did all sorts of good deeds on the charts. QR's resemblance to Brit rockers Slade was an easy observation, as was Kevin Dubrow's American take on Noddy Holder's brash style of delivery.

The Songs
'Metal Health' wasn't just an album with a huge hit single onboard. Despite the efforts of 'Cum On Feel The Noize', the album was pock-marked with other great tunes. The party flavour of 'Slick Black Cadillac' when coupled with the galloping riffs of 'Breathless' ensure this is not a one-hit album. For me the winning track is undoubtedly 'Run For Cover', a tune I still play regularly, despite the advancement of time. The title track 'Metal Health' is still an anthem for the ages, while the Ozzy Osbourne sounding 'Lets Get Crazy' connects the dots between the two bands history. The two tracks which are slightly different is the hard rock/pop of 'Don't Wanna Let You Go' and the piano laced balladry of 'Thunderbird', just to prove to the masses that it's not all about gonzo styled metal a la Twisted Sister and Ted Nugent.

In Summary
The reason why this album is deemed important to the HM genre, was because it was the first album by an HM band to make it to the #1 position on the Billboard charts. This fact alone, coupled with a hit single 'Cum On Feel The Noize' in the Top #5 at the same time (Nov 1983) was unheard of up to that point. Their moment in the sun was brief. By 1984, the follow-up album 'Condition Critical' was similar in terms of material, but strangely, did not sell as well. It too contained another Slade staple 'Mama We're All Crazee Now'. Perhaps the QR magic potion was starting to wear off. Since that time, the band went through more line-up changes than the England rugby team, with just as equal amount of discord toward their management and leader. With past mistakes behind them, QR are still in the saddle, as evidenced by their recent album for Chavis Records during 2006, though with Kevin Dubrow's drug related death in Nov 2007, plus the band's announcement in 2010 that they were reforming (well, an announcement from Frankie Banali at least), I'm not really sure that this is for the greater good (?)

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#1 | Eric on June 02 2007 17:09:32
I remember seeing them on 'Solid Gold' George, but I got tired of these guys really quick, probably because of all the airplay and press they got back then, but... I must be the odd man out, because I kind of liked the first 2 QR albums as directionless as they were.
#2 | shelf stacker on October 03 2008 12:21:45
A friend misheard the chorus of Breathless - "you leave me breathless" - as, "you eat my breakfast". And that's one of the few things I find entertaining about this album. Famous for a pointless Slade cover. Oh, and they were rubbish when they supported Judas Priest.
#3 | reyno-roxx on January 17 2016 12:28:38
Like Eric, I really enjoy the first two albums with Randy Rhoads on as well. 'Quiet Riot II' opens with the original version of 'Slick Black Cadillac' and the band were management stablemates of Angel early on too. I think my interest was piqued with the reformed band by the presence of Carlos Cavazo, having been blown away by his work on the Snow EP.
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