RATT drummer Bobby Blotzer will be forced to sit out the three shows the band has scheduled this week because he has not yet fully recovered from the neck surgery he underwent last October. He says: "I just can't risk the possibility of further damage," before adding: "I've never once in my life missed a show, so I'm tripping, to say the least."
He continues: "I was hoping to give you a surprise as to who would be playing in my place, but I can't deliver that surprise as it's not happening. So, see ya on the [Monsters Of Rock] cruise [as the end of March]."
Jan. 22 - Phoenix Theater - Petaluma, CA
Jan. 23 - House of Blues - Anaheim, CA
Jan. 24 - Wild Horse Pass Casino - Chandler, AZ
Speaking to "The Blairing Out With Eric Blair Show" in January 2013, Blotzer stated about RATT's status: "We're getting ready to do a new record with Brian Howes, this producer that produced NICKELBACK, we have new management, we have Juan Croucier [bass] back in the band, and we're gonna tour and hopefully get along and be happy, which would be amazing."
He added: "Brian Howes is a great guy, great producer, and he's top notch, dude. He's a current A-lister, and we're very excited."
Regarding the songwriting process for the new RATT album, Blotzer said: "Everybody's been writing and everybody has a backlog of material. So we'll just get in like we did with the last record, and there's, like, boom, 35 songs, and then we'll let the producer go, 'OK, let's work these up.' He's got the final say on that. I mean, the last record we worked up in two weeks."
He continued: "I don't think [the new RATT CD is] gonna be super overproduced. I think we're trying to do something new, and really, on all levels of RATT — have everything come out and be a new RATT. [We'll still have] classic-sounding songs, but it's gonna be, obviously, a twist in the production with the way that [Brian] produces."
Original RATT bassist Juan Croucier rejoined the Californian rockers for their show at the M3 Rock Festival on May 12, 2012 at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland and he has been performing with them ever since.
RATT's first studio record in 11 years, "Infestation", sold around 14,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 30 on The Billboard 200 chart. The CD was issued on April 20, 2010 via Loud & Proud.
"Infestation" has sold more than 50,000 copies in the U.S. so far, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Photo credit: Scotty Melvin of The American Rock Festival Facebook page