Jimmy Kay of Canada's The Metal Voice conducted an interview with QUIET RIOT drummer Frankie Banali. You can listen to the full chat below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On whether the first two QUIET RIOT albums ("Quiet Riot" and "Quiet Riot II") will ever be re-released:
Frankie: "My opinion and my position on it, I'm fortunate that I have one copy each of the original vinyls in my vinyl collection. But my position is that I don't have the rights to those records. Those were pre my involvement with QUIET RIOT. I've been managing the band since 1993 and I take care of all QUIET RIOT business now and in retro, and all the business from '83 on. That is something I have no control over. There's a lot of people involved. There is the original label, Sony Japan, there were managers involved, there were producers involved and obviously, the musicians. In the case of Randy [Rhoads, guitar] and Kevin [DuBrow, vocals], their estates. They would all have to come together and come to some kind of agreement for those records to be officially re-released."
On whether he'd like to see the first two QUIET RIOT albums re-released:
Frankie: "I can tell you that if Kevin, god rest him if he were alive, he would be against releasing them. He didn't think they were as good as they could have been. He didn't feel he was as good of a singer as he eventually became. From his perspective, I don't think he would be happy about it, but ultimately, again, it's not my call."
On why the reunion of QUIET RIOT's classic "Metal Health" lineup dissolved in 2003:
Frankie: "There were a lot of reasons. You know I love Kevin, but I'm also a realist. At that point in time, Kevin was dealing with a lot of substance abuse. Rudy [Sarzo, bass], who is my best friend, one of my dearest friends, one of my oldest friends, he was very sensitive about a lot of the things Kevin said in the press. So when you have that kind of dissension and then on top of it, you add flailing record sales, it becomes an uncomfortable situation for everyone around. Carlos [Cavazo, guitar], pretty much stayed away from all of it. I don't think he cared too much about anything one way or the other; he just cruised through it. For me, it was difficult to see Kevin going after Rudy, Rudy going after Kevin and ultimately Rudy deciding to leave the band. At that point, there was no saving the SS QUIET RIOT. I had my hands full trying to bail waters of discontent out of the hull."
On new QUIET RIOT lead singer James Durbin:
Frankie: "It's really interesting because I hadn't met him before and I didn't really follow the TV show 'American Idol', but I did see that one season when he was on it because I had heard they had a 'rock guy' on it which is something they had never had before in my opinion. When I saw him singing with Rob Halford and JUDAS PRIEST and when I saw him along with [OZZY OSBOURNE guitarist] Zakk Wylde, I said to myself, 'This guy is really talented. I think this guy can go far.' How it works with QUIET RIOT is interesting. His voice is not the same as Kevin's, but he has the range that Kevin had. He can go very high, he can go very low and everything in between. He's got a very melodic style of singing, but he's got that same kind of energy as a person and as a performer that Kevin had. For me, that is something that had been missing since Kevin passed away in 2007. All of those things were a plus. I needed someone that could sing the older material live, but I needed also somebody who could bring something new to the table, because again, as I said before, when it comes to recording, QUIET RIOT is all about evolving and moving forward as much as we can."
On what era of QUIET RIOT the band's new "Road Rage" album would fit in:
Frankie: "It fits in different places. If you take a track like 'Freak Flag' and 'Wasted', I think they're siblings to some of the material that we did on 'Metal Health' and 'Condition Critical'. There's songs on there that have similarities, stylistically similarities to things on both 'Condition Critical' and 'QRIII', then there are songs that are completely different than anything we've done in the past. For me, that's a win-win situation. I didn't go out and try to copy the 'Metal Health' record or the 'Condition Critical' record or any of the QUIET RIOT records, I just let the music come out and progress as it did."
On the band updating songtitles, vocal melodies and lyrics from the previously-recorded version of "Road Rage" that featured vocalist Seann Nicols (a.k.a. Sheldon Tarsha; formerly of ADLER'S APPETITE):
Frankie: "The only thing is the same is the music because all the music had been written. The majority of the music was written by myself and my writing partner, Neil Citron, who's also the engineer on the record. There's one song that Alex [Grossi, guitar] wrote all the music to and there's one song that Chuck Wright [bass] had co-writing credit. But, we got rid of all the lyrics and all the vocal melodies from the first version and had James create all new lyrics and all new melodies. As a matter of fact, James, to this day, has not heard the first version of the record because I wanted to make sure he had a blank canvas and wasn't influenced one way or the other by what had preceded."
On whether he would ever write a "tell-all" book:
Frankie: "You know, everyone keeps asking me to do that and I'm really fortunate or maybe unfortunate in the fact that no matter how much fun I had in the '80s, I actually am one of the few guys that remembers everything that happened. I've got huge archives, so there's a possibility, it's just the matter of finding the time to do it and finding the right publisher to put it out. To just put out another book, it's just another person putting out a book. Again, everything with me, I really work really hard to try to make everything as correct as I possibly can. There's a real possibility. There's definitely several books in me. It's just a matter of getting them out."
"Road Rage" will be released on August 4 via Frontiers Music Srl.