Yesterday we recorded our Ratt Talk on Tim’s Vinyl Confessions…Today…it is now up on YouTube. Go check it out as it was a ton of fun. It was great meeting Jex and seeing Deke again. And a big thank you to Tim of Tim’s Vinyl Confessions for having me on. Always a good time to talk about Ratt!!
One of the most consistent hard rock bands to emerge from the early 1980s. Not an enormous catalogue, but enough to discuss, with a first time combo of TVC vet Jex, Deke and John. If you’re a Ratt fan, you’re going to enjoy this one.
For My Sunday Song #254, we are going to explore the song “Lay It Down” by Ratt off the band’s 1985 album ‘Invasion of Your Privacy’. The song broke the Top 40 and landed at #40 on the Hot 100. This helped the album sell over 2,000,000 copies and push the band to super stardom after they massively successful debut album. The song is one of the few that is credited to every member of the band except for Bobby Blotzer. He doesn’t have any writing credits on this album.
The song is not very deep lyrically. It basically sums up to trying to getting some female action. It does talk about how she doesn’t really know him and that she might not even care. They play the game of romance but she won’t get to see the real him until they are in the sheets having some fun and letting themselves go completely. I’m sorry there isn’t much more to it than that, but Ratt never claimed to be Bob Dylan now did they.
Musically though, it is a fantastic song. That opening guitar riff from Warren DeMartini is one of the best they’ve ever done. Bobby Blotzer’s drums are hard and heavy and he lays down a cool groove along with Juan Croucier on bass. The song is typical 80’s rock, but Ratt has a way of putting a blues edge to it with both Robbin Crosby and Warren’s playing. It helped set Ratt apart from some of the other bands. The song is also a little on the sleazy side which fits well with the lyrics. Stephen Pearcy’s gritty vocals bring the sleaze to the forefront, but when he whispers that last verse, he shows a softer, sexier side that helps catapult the song to the next level.
For most of 2018, I have been reviewing all the Ratt albums from the Ratt E.P. in 1983 all the way to 2010’s Infestation. It has been an enjoyable ride walking through the history of the band, all the ups and the downs, the good and the bad and loving every minute of it (wait that is Loverboy)…and loving watching the wax or cd spinning round and round (much better).
Ratt has been a love/hate relationship. While I love most of what they do, they don’t always deliver the goods and I tried to be as honest as I could be throughout the review processes. I believe I was brutal where I needed to be and kissed their ass when it deserved it as well. I hear they band is planning a new album in 2019 and when it comes I will review it in detail like the others and I will update this list and put it where it belongs among the classics or the crap.
You can go back and read each review in detail by just clicking on the album title. This ranking will be just a summary of the good and bad of each album. I hope you enjoy.
The hardest review of them all to write. I couldn’t connect to this album when it came out or even now. The production quality was horrible; Stephen’s vocals needed some cleanup and weren’t always up to par; the double guitar of Ratt of old was gone and so the songs were missing that punch; and overall it was just bad.
On June 13, 1985, Ratt released their second full length album called ‘Invasion of Your Privacy’. After the success of their debut ‘Out of the Cellar’, Ratt wasted no time in repeating that formula and delivering another solid album. The line-up was unchanged.
Stephen Pearcy – vocals
Robin Crosby – lead guitar
Warren DeMartini – lead guitar
Juan Croucier – bass
Bobby Blotzer – drums
The producer was still Beau Hill. The only thing different was the model on the front cover. This time around it was Playboy model Marianne Gravatte. Marianne was Playmate of the Year in 1983 where she was noticed by Stephen Pearcy (and everyone else). Fun fact…the prior Playmate of the Year was none other than Gene Simmons’ wife, Shannon Tweed. Marianne also appeared in the video for “Lay It Down” which we will get to later.
The album was not quite as successful as the debut, but it did peak at #7 on the Billboard charts which was the same place ‘Out of the Cellar’ peaked. The album did go on to sell over 2 million copies. The album also peaked the interest of the group Parents Music Resource Center which is the Tipper Gore group that looked to censor the music industry. The group did end up getting Parental Advisory stickers placed on albums with foul language and that contained inappropriate material.
The band Ratt has been in the news a lot lately and not all in a good way. First with Stephen Pearcy releasing a great new solo album. And second, the Ratt band mates have been feuding over who owns the band name. It is sad and disgusting. To me, Ratt is Stephen Pearcy, Warren DeMartini, Bobby Blotzer, Robbin Crosby and Juan Croucier. But the band is now two bands fighting over the name.
In one corner you have Stephen Pearcy, Warren MeMartini & Juan Croucier. The other corner you have Bobby Blotzer. Robbin Crosby passed away in 2002 and luckily isn’t witnessing this fiasco. Based on what I have read, Bobby Blotzer will probably lose and Ratt will be with Stephen, Warren and Juan, but what do I know I am not an attorney.
Any other version is a cover band…sorry Bobby that is all your version would look like. Plus, you were never a song writer on any of the songs so the Ratt sound and style didn’t come from you so not sure I would ever check out your version of Ratt. I am sorry that was mean. There were actually 2 songs you have writing credits on and your drumming in the band was actually great. I still feel your version is a cover band though!!!
Because of them being in the news, I have been listening to their music and I realized they have a lot of great songs. I figured why not do a list of my Top 20 Ratt songs. I have gone through all their albums and I feel I have the definitive list of Ratt songs. I was hoping to have songs from every Ratt album, but their 1999, self-titled reunion album sucked so much that I could not in good faith include any songs. Collage was a compilation of rarities and b-sides but mostly stuff from pre-Ratt and I wanted to stick with the main Ratt era. Otherwise, here the Top 20 Ratt songs.