"...a metal masterpiece, a no nonsense approach to rock 'n roll."
Fire Down Under
Brilliant and innovative, Fire Down Under is the third album by Riot. One of the hardest metal albums done by an American band in the early 80's before it went big hair or thrash. The 1981 release finds the band at the peak of their melodic, riff-heavy and hard rocking power. Every song is like a greatest hits album, fast, catchy, with soaring guitars and great vocals. The combination of Mark Reale's Les Paul with Rick Ventura's bright-sounding Strat makes terrific use of the difference in sound between the two instruments. Pure early 80's raunch, just nasty sounding stuff - gloriously thick, tight and exciting. The playing is flawlessly crisp, which it needs to be at these speeds. Any band can play loud, but few can really be powerful. Many bands can play fast, but few have this kind of energy.
Guy Speranza's vocals are absolutely amazing, full of soul and emotion, a great vehicle for his vocal pyrotechnics. Standouts include the driving opening song "Swords and Tequila," the breakneck, breathless riff of the title track, the brilliant "Outlaw" - one of the best hard rock songs ever written, the catchy, melodic relief of "Feel the Same" and the mighty "Altar of the King."
"Fire Down Under" is one of the most revered metal albums ever - A true metal classic for the ages - one of the top 100 metal albums of all time.
Producer Steve Loeb and Billy Arnell