Ratt Packs Them In

The band is coming into 1998 with two oversold shows in Los Angeles and a new album deal courtesy of Sony. This past weekend, their shows at L.A.'s Billboard Live were "the" place to be. The audience, at capacity and then some both nights, included such notables as Billy Corgan, Twiggy Ramirez, Slash, Bruce Kulick (ex-Kiss) and Van Halen's Michael Anthony, among many others.

The 80s heavy metal hair band disbanded in 1992 and reunited early this past summer, albeit shy two original members. Vocalist Stephen Pearcy, guitarist Warren De Martini and drummer Bobby Blotzer reformed without bassist Juan Croucier and guitarist Robbin Crosby. Croucier now owns and operates a studio in Los Angeles and opted to concentrate on his business, and Crosby is facing health complications that precluded his participation.

The band released a hodge-podge album on a small label -- studio outtakes, old live material and four new songs -- appropriately titled "Collage." According to Blotzer,

this was just to give them a reason to tour. Leg one ended abruptly and disastrously when Pearcy fell off the 12-ft. stage, broke his ankle and destroyed his kneecap. They returned to the road this fall with better luck, although they still had to cancel dates when Pearcy temporarily lost his voice.

Ratt now takes a short break before heading to the studio to record a new album. The band was recently signed to Sony by John Kalodner, the powerful A&R man well known for inking Aerosmith and other bands of the hard rock ilk. They're aiming for a summer release date.