Jeb Wright of Classic Rock Revisited recently interviewed QUIET RIOT frontman Kevin DuBrow. An excerpt from the chat follows:
Classic Rock Revisited: Are you ashamed of any performance on an album in your career?
Kevin: "Condition Critical". I think "Metal Heath" is a great record for the time and I think all of the singing I did on that album was good for the time. The producer started making millions of dollars and he decided that we had to do it over and over again. We tried to do it again and the result was "Condition Critical". I am ashamed of that album because it shows how cheesy QUIET RIOT could be. I am embarrassed of that album, totally. We were rushed into it. The songs were leftovers and the singing was ridiculously overdone. There is a song on the album called "Scream and Shout" that is the epitome of what I hate about that era. I didn't want to ever do anything like that again.
Classic Rock Revisited: The album is called "Rehab". If the next album goes back to the '80s sound then you can call it "Relapse".
Kevin: Or we could call it "Regurgitate". The name I came up with. It was something that a former member of the band would have hated. Frankie loved it. I think it kind of ties everything together. You have "Metal Health", "Condition Critical" and now "Rehab".
Classic Rock Revisited: Neil, while on the album, is not a touring member of the band. Alex Grossi has come back as a full time member. Alex is good but Neil is amazing. Is there any fear that Alex may not live up to what Neil has done?
Kevin: We are only playing three songs off the new album. We are doing "Free", "South of Heaven" and "Old Habits Die Hard". Alex plays the Carlos stuff fine. Neil does not want to go on tour. Alex is only 30 and he loves to tour. Frankie loves to play live and I am the biggest juvenile delinquent on the face of the earth. Alex, live, is very appropriate for what we are doing and the way the band is. Alex does not know FREE or SPOOKY TOOTH or JEFF BECK. I have given him those records but I don't think he has listened to them. Most of what we play live is "Metal Heath" and Alex plays those songs live more true to the original record than Carlos does.
Classic Rock Revisited: On the Rock Never Stops Tour you guys got a ton of good press but you still were opening the show up. Do you ever get tired of being placed in front of bands who are not as good live as you are?
Kevin: In 1983 we toured on the first album and everyone raved about how great we were. It was not until I gave some poorly worded interviews that we became the "they suck" band.
Classic Rock Revisited: We have discussed that story in detail in a previous interview. Do you really think those interviews damaged the band that much?
Kevin: In America people do not like someone who is ungrateful for their success. When I started complaining about things and started saying things about other bands then America said, "Kevin DuBrow you are an ungrateful piece of shit and we are going to take all of this away from you." America has this thing about them. For instance, look at Michael Richards. He fucked up bad but now everyone wants to cut him off at the knees. I am not the first guy who has been subject to it. What else could be the reason? My bad breath?
I insulted groups that we shared a common fan base with. By doing that I insulted our own fans and that is where I screwed up. "Rehab" is having a great effect for this band. We are starting to be seen not so much as a nostalgia band. People are starting to see that we can have some credibility in 2006.
You said that we were opening for bands who were not as good as us. Let me tell you the press on the Rock Never Stops tour all said that QUIET RIOT were the best band on the bill. That said, RATT were no good that tour. We shined next to them because they were just no good. CINDERELLA and FIREHOUSE were both great. I think people just expect us to be old and shitty with no energy. Frankie and I are extremely competitive. We want to go up and blow everyone off the stage. We thought CINDERELLA were the nicest band we ever toured with and they played great but we still wanted to blow them off the stage. Again, RATT were no good that tour. If we played before JUDAS PRIEST then you would not be able to say we were the best on the bill.
Classic Rock Revisited: So placing had a lot to do with it.
Kevin: Having RATT anywhere on the bill would have helped.
Classic Rock Revisited: I don't dislike those guys but I had to see them three times that year and it was not good.
Kevin: I don't have anything against them either but it was just not good. I don't want to sit here and put them down but the truth is that they were not good. CINDERELLA was a different story. They are great and they are the nicest fucking people. Jeff Lebar would have great conversations about old bands the way you and I do. Tom Keifer is a real musicologist but his musical background only goes back to a certain date. I would go and buy Tom albums all the time. He loves Rob Stewart like I do but he does not go back as far as me so I went out and got him Rod's first two albums. I got the best phone call of the year the other day when Tom called me and said he heard the new album and that he loved it. I told him the scream I do in "Old Habits Die Hard" was for him. I got the idea to scream like that from "Nobody's Fool".
Classic Rock Revisited: Do you think that in addition to the arrogant interviews your rock star lifestyle at the time made you come across more arrogant than you really were?
Kevin: I was doing some blow before we became big but then again so was MÖTLEY and VAN HALEN. I know I didn't drink as much as they did. I think I was more public about my charismatic incorrect behavior. Let me put it to this to way, I was not the prettiest boy in the neighborhood. Nikki Sixx could be a real dickhead but people took it better because he was so pretty. Sebastian Bach got away with a lot of shit because he was pretty. With me people were going, "Who the fuck does this ugly motherfucker think he is?"
Read the entire interview at www.classicrockrevisited.com.