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1986 – Part 4.2: Quiet Riot – QR III

“QR III” or “Quiet Riot III” is actually the fifth studio album from Quiet Riot if you can the “QRI” and “QRII” albums with Randy Rhoads.

It was released in 1986 on Pasha/CBS and it is the last album to feature lead singer Kevin DuBrow until the 1993 album “Terrified” which got a zero skull review in an Australian mag and the word “Terrible” as part of the review.

It’s produced by Spencer Proffer again with John Purdell.

A funny thing was happening in 1986. For some strange reason, artists who had massive sales in 1983 and 1984, struggled to match those sales a few years later.

Twisted Sister had big sales in 1983 and 1984 and they played to half empty venues on the “Come Out And Play” tour in 1985 and by 86, no one really cared about em and by 87 they had broken up.

Judas Priest had declining album sales by 1986, but still proved to be a big drawcard on the live circuit.

Ratt couldn’t match the success of their 1984 debut and by 1986, “Dancing Undercover” was just a blimp on the charts.

And then we have Quiet Riot.

Following the massive success of “Metal Health” and the more modest reception of “Condition Critical”, sales of “QR III” were even lower and it did not achieve any certification.

This Quiet Riot album is also the first album to feature Chuck Wright, formerly of Giuffria, on bass as an official member replacing Rudy Sarzo.

Wright joins Kevin DuBrow, Frankie Banali and Carlos Cavazo.

Before I get into the album, it’s worth mentioning that I never understood the argument put forward about bands rocking less when keyboards are involved. This album has a lot of keys but it still rocks.

Main Attraction

It’s a songwriting committee of Carlos Cavazo, Frankie Banali, Kevin DuBrow, Spencer Proffer, John Purdell and Chuck Wright.

They keys are prominent and the track could be mistaken for a Styx or Toto track.

The Wild and the Young

The song is written by Proffer, Banali, Cavazo, DuBrow and Wright.

Behind “Bang Your Head”, “The Wild and the Young” is the next best original.

The drum groove from Banali starts things off. Then the guitars and the keys play in unison until Cavazo overdubs a memorable little lead.

And the vocals start. While DuBrow is more miss with his lyrics, on this song he’s perfect with his message and delivery.

The music video for the song wasn’t cheap as it shows a dystopian future under control by a totalitarian militarist government and they are trying to round up anyone who is listening to rock music.

Twilight Hotel

Written by Wright, Banali, Cavazo, DuBrow and Proffer. I was drawn to this song immediately because it was different musically.

Down and Dirty

Written by Dubrow, Banali, Cavazo and Wright. It’s written as “Dow And Dirty” on Spotify. It’s typical hard rock and of the times.

Rise or Fall

Written by Dubrow, Banali, Cavazo and Wright.

I dig the opening riff on this. And Cavazo goes to town on the lead break.

Put Up or Shut Up

Written by Dubrow, Banali, Cavazo and Wright.

CC DeVille would have been listening to this as the main riff sounds like something that DeVille tweaked for “Nothin But A Good Time”.

Still of the Night

It’s written by the same songwriting team that wrote “Main Attraction”.

The cut is excellent, a soft rocker but so far removed from the “power ballad” formula.

Bobby Kimball from Toto performs backing vocals on the track, however the “backing” vocals are really cranked up in the Chorus, so it’s safe to say that Kimball was brought in to be the lead vocal there.

Bass Case

It’s an Instrumental written by Wright and all bass. For a minute length, I’m not sure why this is here.

The Pump

Written by Banali, Cavazo, DuBrow and Wright. It’s an attempt to capture “The Stroke” from Billy Squier.

I’m surprised that this song hasn’t been sampled by the rappers as it’s got a lot of good bits in it.

Slave to Love

The mighty Stan Bush is here as a songwriter, along with the committee of Banali, Cavazo, DuBrow, Proffer and Wright.

Musically it’s excellent. It’s almost melodic Metal The melodies are also excellent. Lyrically it’s crap.

Helping Hands

Written by Dubrow, Banali, Cavazo and Wright. It’s an underrated cut with a heavy 70s influence with a killer lead by Cavazo.

While a lot of people were off the QR train by the time this album hit the streets I wasn’t one of em. I was hooked by the music video for “The Wild And The Young” and when I saw the High Syme cover I was happy to part with my money.

Musically it’s a very mature album and an album that’s aged well.

Check out and be wild and young again.

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