My pal Tbone was first out of the cellar, oops I meant to say gate picking up the major label debut of RATT’s “Out of The Cellar” back in March ’84.
Growing up in Thunder Bay there is no such thing as a Sunset Strip but at that time in ’84 we would cruise around in Tbone’s parents Ford green machine family van and would blast “Out of The Cellar” for all the city to hear!
Shortly after though I had to have my own copy of “Out of The Cellar” and what a decent debut. Some great playing within the band as the songs were good, production was good and singer Stephen Pearcy had that sleazy L.A drawl liked he swallowed a pack of razor blades.
The ace in the hole within the band is of course Warren DeMartini who plays a bunch of solo’s suited to the bands needs. Dude has his own style and wasn’t really the hot dogging type on the six string.
“Wanted Man” leads off the charge basically its about these guys blowing into town, playing the show, hooking up with ladies and blowing out of town(ahem) to the next show! Warren seals the seal the deal with a great guitar solo!
“Round And Round” the debut single went through the roof especially on the video front which at the time was really crafted smart video. The guitars of DeMartini and the late Robbin Crosby are stellar on this song and many others.
Plus the fact that RATT could shake up the musical tempo in there tunes as well. Some quick little shifts in the songs which made me notice as a listener that they cats could play.
Don’t believe me check out the second track “You’re In Trouble” which at the start with the rumbling bass from Juan Croucier and the offbeat drumming by Bobby Blotzer sounds like Duran Duran hyped on speed. “She Wants Money” has the RATT X-Press clipping at a fast pace down the track shows that when they wanted to power rock they could.
No dip on Side 2 as “Lack of Communication” has Pearcy and Croucier trading one liners on the song which if anything is an appropriate title in 2021 I would add!
“Back For More” is the second single and has that nice little acoustic opening before launching into an all out frontal rock attack. Once again the boys mix it up in the tempo department! (for an even better version of Back For More check out the RATT EP issued in 1983)
When I talk about end of album GEMS “The Morning After” is one of them. Why on Gods green earth was this not released as a single. It’s all here. Tight musical chops with Pearcy’s sleaze ball vocal delivery. Simply a stellar tune…
“I’m Insane” has the band driving forward with a quick hit between the eyes while end of the album tune “Scene of The Crime” is a real good album closer as Pearcy tells the tale about being duped by some cold hearted bitch. His words not mine folk’s. Once again another cool solo to round things up.
Looking back and listening to this one again takes me back to that summer of ’84 when so many records were coming out that year. RATT held there own in hanging with the big boys and give these guys props for not putting a single ballad on here!
Tbone was the first dude to score Out Of The Cellar on cassette tape as soon as the debut tune Round & Round hit the radio and video circuit back in the good ol year of 1984!
Tbone had just turned 16. Got his License and we hit the streets in Thunder Bay in his parents 1984 Lean Mean Green Ford Nasty Van Machine blasting Out Of The Cellar all around Tbay whether you wanted to hear it or not!
1984! What can you say about that year in music especially the Hard Rock side of things and with Sleazy Vince and Nikki and his bag of Trixx Sixx record honcho’s were drooling all over themselves to find the next “One” after Motley Crue were making us all Shout At The Devil!
Ratt was definitely “One’ of them. In Ratt they had a sure-fire Guitar Slinger in the form of Warren DeMartini and a dude with a different kind of throat who thank god did not sing in falsetto and that would be Stephen Pearcy. Along with Bassist Juan Croucier(who also provided a ton of great back up vocals) Guitarist Robbin Crosby(RIP) and a wacka doddle Drummer Bobby Blotzer. Well Blotzer has only become a wacka doodle in the last few years as he has toured with a whole bunch of rotating musicians calling themselves Ratt but the other guys took him to court and now Pearcy and crew are the real Ratt!
Get it? Yup! Gotta love over the age of 55 Old Rock Dude Drama!
Allright back to 84…
Ratt walloped a punch of a sound and they had the tunes to back it up! Beau Hill perfectly captures the sound behind the recording console.
Wanted Man opens the album and Pearcy lays down the law as the Gunslinger as this is Ratt 84 heading into your town/drinking the booze/getting the birds and splitting town and then becoming Wanted Men!
Great opening track along with some snazz and dash soloing from Warren and Ratt lay it down(ahem) and myself and Tbone are onboard! This is 1984 we are talking about correct?
Your In Trouble ramps right up out of the gate(er cellar) and it features some cool melodic guitaring at certain points but Pearcy keeps the party going. I read Pearcys Autobiography last year and for Steve-o in the roaring 80’s it was Party/Pussy/Paycheque! My roaring 80’s (1984 exactly )was School/Metal/Needing a Paycheque. Frigg I got shafted….
Well what can be said about Round And Round? The song that blew the lid off this album along with the crafty video featuring the late Milton Berle whose nephew I believe managed Ratt at the time. This song was so catchy…..”Out In The Streets” claims Steve and were off! Demartini lays down a slobber knocker of a solo and this song has all the trimmings of an 80’s Rock Delight! Snazzy verse’s/Catchy chorus/Bad Ass solo/ Cool Rock singing… Say what you want about Pearcy’s voice as for this band it suits hime fine and he was smart enough to not try to pull a Rob Halford.
In Your Direction is a straight ahead rock track. Ratt knew there rock formula and that was not inventing the wheel but giving it a kick aroo L.A Sleazeball Style. Blotzer does his part by keeping his drums ploughing forward and not letting anyone slip.
Ratt goes down the Autobahn at 200 MPH on She Wants Money. The song that finishes up Side 1 doesn’t fool around. Quick shot of a Ratt dose right up your backside. This song is all about Hookers! Yup Hookers!
Case in point …want some Hooker Words….check this out..
I try to tell her I don’t have no cash
She looks at me and starts to laugh
I don’t wanna know, you’ve gotta go
I see her walkin’ on down the street
She sees another and she acts so sweet
You wanna try, your luck tonight
The chorus features some big time backing vocals from Juan while the guitars yet again dip into the melodic side but the Ratt bus is still rocking long past midnight and of course Steve-o has to ask her if she “Wants money? Quick change!” Hey I posted at the top of the page the audio track of this tune for the Greatest Hits Duo BMellis & Rockin Roberts as they like the seedier side of Rock! Climb aboard Fella’s!
Another all time Ratt Classic is Lack Of Communication. Cool opening riff and this is simple yet catchy rock with Steve and Juan trading off the vocal lines right before the chorus. Cool Warren solo adds to the mix.
The original Back For More was on the Ratt EP from 83. This is a bit of a watered down version. Still good though and even the Crue knew it as Nikki and Tommy appeared as Cops( Insert a ton of fucking laughs here) in the video. See Ratt were smart. They seen Van Halen make fun goofy videos like Panama & Hot For Teacher and Ratt wanted that piece of the pie. It worked!
Now a really good tune and thats The Morning After. What a super-duper cool track and it’s like I always say it’s nice to find those end of the albums tunes that just aren’t “Filler” tracks! Morning After has that cool slope of Rock that has the classic chorus with Pearcy saying he is indeed leaving the Morning After! I believe ya pal ..I believe ya pal!
I’m Insane keeps the album pushing forward as Pearcy tells the tale that he’s off his rocker and he fell out of a tree! Ha…not Shakespearean but he still gets the point across! I like the chorus as it sounds a little off kilter like its insane! Hahaha…
The last tune is Scene Of The Crime. Steve-o has been done wrong as his ‘Cold Blooded Bitch Goin Out On Me” Oh Oh..this is no Round and Round folks this is Serious Ratt playing out the album and hey if you think your tough and have fooled Stephen. You got another thing coming! Scene of The Crime is almost a different vibe than the previous 9 tracks but make no mistake it’s still Ratt N Roll!
I have championed Ratt’s cause throughout this Blog as I have reviewed most of their output! I will say that overall they had the more consistent material than the Crue but as the Crue had the image and big shows I fell for the trap that Sixx set! Hey good on Nikki for playing me like a fiddle for a lot of years!
Perhaps thats why Sixx and Lee were in the Ratt video you know checking out the competition!
Ha those sly Motley Bastards! Speaking of which…
Out go the lights
In goes my knife
Pull out his life
Consider that bastard dead