Dating back to 1977 Mark Reale’s project / band has consistently delivered quality melodic metal masterpieces. Unfortunately in the 70’s and early 80’s, Riot were such pioneers that they were too far ahead of the pack in terms of the evolving metal styles that would rule throughout the 80’s. Throughout the Riot’s 26 years of existence, they have had 4 lead vocalists and a variety of interchanging musicians when Reale always being the constant.
Current vocalist Mike DiMeo delivers, in my opinion, his best performance with the band since he joined. “Turn The Tables” is a firery heavy rocker with the signature melodies for which Riot is noted. “Chains” also keeps the heavy-paced rocking edge that is synonymous with the band. With Bobby Rondinelli (drums, RAINBOW) on board for this release and DiMeo sometimes wondering into Joe Lynn Turner range, references to early 80’s may be drawn. However, the classic metal style is further cemented by covering one of Riot’s few remaining peers in UFO. “Only You Can Rock Me” sounds true to the original.
Mark Reale’s musicianship has been, and continues to be, on par with the most respected guitarists of the genre. Mark’s compositions on “Through the Storm” are no exception; each song is an amalgam of expert timing, arrangement, and harmony. If you are a fan of rock songs with soloing guitars in the vein of UFO and Rainbow this album will certainly delight. Personally, I would love to hear Reale’s WESTWORLD co-hort Tony Harnell (TNT) get to do lead vocals one on Riot album instead of background vocals only. While the WESTWORLD project is a tad too modern for me, the thought of “Swords And Tequila” mixed with “Last Summer’s Evil” would be killer!!!