The 1988 "Thundersteel" lineup of RIOT has reformed and is planning on hitting the road in Europe this summer. A new studio album featuring the same musicians is also in the works.Commented the band: "We've just concluded our first writing session as a band in almost 20 years and we're happy to say that it was a very productive get-together. After exchanging musical ideas long distance for the past few months, Mark (Reale) and Mike (Flyntz) recently joined Don (Van Stavern) and Bobby (Jarzombek) down in San Antonio, Texas where a many RIOT songs have been written over the course of the last quarter century, including much of 'The Privilege of Power'. Getting together in the same room was a lot like getting back on the bike — it felt very natural and the chemistry between us was back in an instant."
"The material that Bobby and I have been writing sounds like the follow-up to 'Thundersteel' and 'The Privilege of Power'; it's like we never missed a beat!" states Don. "The new stuff is in the same vein except even more intense! I describe it as ''Thundersteel' on crack!'"
The band was initially hoping to come up with six or seven tunes and ended up with over a dozen really strong song ideas they will be developing beyond the demo stage. The next step is for Tony Moore and Mark to work on melodies and lyrics. Tony says: "Don, Bobby, Mark and Mike have sent me some incredibly rich and challenging instrumentals, and while I'm practicing day and night to rebuild 'the Voice of Steel.' I'm also looking deep inside to find stories that will do justice to this inspiring new music. I'll tell you this much — right now it sounds like what you would expect if the five of us had kept progressing together the whole time. It's intense music and promises to be a tour de force that runs the whole gamut of what metal can do. I've set expectations pretty high, but this band has never settled for less. I can't wait to share the new songs with our true fans who've waited as long as we have for this to happen."
Mark had this to say: "I'm definitely having fun putting myself back into the type of mindset we were in as a band when we created 'Thundersteel' and 'The Privilege of Power'. The five of us working together — Don's crazy riffs, Bobby's insane drumming, Tony's soaring vocals, and having the luxury of Mike's second guitar this time around — makes for a unique collaboration."
The band continued: "We are all excited about going into the studio to record this album, which will get under way over the summer. We've had the video camera running throughout this writing session and will get some footage up soon. Until then we thought it would be cool to start off our YouTube channel with a rare live clip of the song 'Fight Or Fall'. This footage was recorded in Tokyo, Japan on the 'Thundersteel' tour in 1989. It was our first time there and is a great memory for all of us. Watch it below.
"Last but not least and back to the present — we finally have a confirmed date and venue for our pre-Sweden Rock warm-up show! RIOT will be kicking out the jams at the Scout Bar, Ste 101, 19314 US Highway 281 in San Antonio on Tuesday, June 2. We couldn't be more thrilled to be able to get out in front of our fans in what has long been our second home: San Antonio, Rock City! So mark your calendars, spread the word, and c'mon down to help give us a proper send off! We'll see you there!"