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Riot: Born In America | Ηeavy Μetal Μachine

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Last Updated on 02:35 AM by Giorgos Tsekas

Genre: Heavy Metal
Country: U.S.A.
Label: Quality Records
Year: 1983

Mark Reale was a genius composer, a great guitarist and certainly a perfect finder of excellent vocalists. In 1982 Rhett Forrester joined Riot and “Restless Breed” was such a strong album that made everyone to (almost) forget Guy Speranza or at least not complain for his departure. But Elektra Records was not satisfied from Riot. So the band got dropped from the label and signed with Canadian indie label Quality Records. Without hesitation Riot created a raw album, full of emotions based on the skills of Forrester’s voice and the talent of Reale. “Born In America” is the 5th studio album Riot, released in 1983. It was “born”, recorded and mixed in New York City at Greene Street Recording Studios. Incredible album containing real gems like “Gunfighter”, “Running From the Law”, one of the manliest heavy metal tunes ever written, and “Wings of Fire”, songs that other bands would (and probably should) kill to be their creations. Especially “Wings of Fire, with the slow intro suddenly turned upside down with Slavin’s drums and Forrester’s exceptional scream, is magnificent. But my favorite is certainly “You Burn In Me” with its melodic riff and the catchy and memorable chorus. Just brilliant! One of the best ballads ever written, with amazing guitars and lyrics that always bring you shivers down your spine. Τhe main ingredients and the characteristics of “Born In America”: Amazing song writing from Reale, excellent performance from Forrester (that eventually was to be the last with the band) and a touch of Riot’s first 2 albums and (late) 70’s atmosphere. “Born In America is the kind of album you’ll choose to play when some day your kids will ask you.. “Daddy, what is heavy metal?” A tremendous prequel to maybe their most successful album “Thundersteel”. Buy or Die situation!!!
riot japan
*Nice cover on Cliff Richard. Did better than one might expect.
**The album was re-issued in 1989 by Grand Slamm Records in the U.S. and CBS/Sony Records in Japan, both with different artwork (a further U.S. re-issue followed in 1999 through Metal Blade Records, utilizing the original cover artwork).
*** Forrester was shot and killed 11 years after the release of “Born In America”, at a Northwest Atlanta intersection after he refused to give up his vehicle in an attempted carjacking; he was 37 years old. The crime was never solved till recently. The one of the two men who were on the scene, who apparently pulled trigger on Forrester, killed himself and the other one was arrested for other crimes and finally admitting to being at the scene of Rhetts’ death among other murders.

1. Born in America
2. You Burn in Me
3. Wings of Fire
4. Running From the Law
5. Devil Woman (Cliff Richard Cover)
6. Vigilante Killer
7. Heavy Metal Machine
8. Where Soldiers Rule
9. Gunfighter
10. Promised Land
Line up:
Rhett Forrester/vocals
Mark Reale/guitar
Rick Ventura/guitar
Kip Leming/bass
Sandy Slavin/drums

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