"some music was meant to stay underground..."

Riot

Formed: 1975
From: New York City, NY, United States
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Riot News

Below is our complete Riot news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.

Note: We began associating news directly with bands in late 2003. Therefore, earlier band news may not be listed on this page.

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Column

Pit Stories: Joining Fans In The Pit

Every Tuesday we check in with metal musicians from across the genre spectrum to get their most memorable Pit Stories from live shows.

This week guitarist Nick Lee from Riot V shares a tale of a band that's not afraid to leave the stage and get right into the pit with fans - all while still playing the set! Nick had this to say:

I've grown up in pits at local shows and I feel like this was my favorite story to tell. My favorite pit-like experience has to be anytime Alabama's Daikaiju rolls through NYC. Within the first few songs of their set the band (amplifiers, drum kit, and all) is right in the middle of the floor with the audience.

The last time I saw them, right after they set their cymbals on fire in the middle of a tiny, cramped, dive bar with spectators' faces mere inches away, they had the crowd hoist the drummer, and each of his drums into the air, where he played the next song on top of any hands, shoulders, and heads he could balance on. Meanwhile their guitar players are taking turns climbing the bar, and surfing across the audience on their backs, never missing a note. The audience takes the cue and finds their own way to add to the insanity while the employees of the bar look on in horror.

I chose these experiences because they are always intense, sweaty, physical, over-the-top RAGERS but without any violent, chest-beating, machismo bullshit that tends to ruin the vibe of heavy shows. The audience leaves battered and bruised but never without a smile on their face and some crazy stories to tell their friends who stayed home that night.

Riot V - the band born from the remaining members of U.S. metal outfit Riot - is now dropping brand new album "Unleash The Fire." It was released in Japan back in August, and will be released in Europe, Canada, and the U.S. in October.

"Unleash The Fire" is the first record since the passing of guitarist and Riot founder Mark Reale. It features Riot veterans Don Van Stavern on bass, Mike Flyntz on guitar, and Frank Gilchriest on drums, and it is the first record with Todd Michael Hall on vocals and Nick Lee on guitar.

The band is also getting ready to play Loud Park '14 in Japan on October 19th with headliners Dream Theater & Manowar, as well as lining up new tours for 2015. More...

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Riot V Reveals Artwork For "Unleash The Fire"

Riot V, the band born from the remaining members of U.S. metal pioneers Riot, have unveiled the artwork and track list for the upcoming new release "Unleash the Fire," which is set for release on August 27, 2014 via SPV/Steamhammer Records. The album is the first from the band since "Immortal Soul" (see review here) was released in 2011 just before the death of founder/guitarist Mark Reale. It also marks the first for new vocalist Todd Michael Hall (Reverence).

Earlier this month, guitarist Mike Flyntz reported on the new album via Facebook, saying: "I just listened to the rough mix of the new RIOT V record "Unleash The Fire." Mark and I would always burn a CD, or back in the day make a cassette tape for the car. 'You must always listen to it in your car first,' he would say. This record is for my friend Mark Reale. I am very proud of it. We made a great record on a shoestring budget. When it is released you will hear Mark's spirit throughout. We couldn't have done it without the constant support from the Riot fans and of course the support of Tony Reale."

The track list for "Unleash the Fire" is as follows:

1. Ride Hard Live Free
2. Metal Warrior
3. Fall from the Sky
4. Bring the Hammer Down
5. Unleash the Fire
6. Land of the Rising Sun
7. Kill to Survive
8. Return of the Outlaw
9. Immortal
10. Take Me Back
11. Fight Fight Fight
12. Until We Meet Again
13. Thundersteel (Live) (Bonus Track) More...

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Riot Announces Tribute Shows And Live Lineup

Riot V, the remaining members of US metal pioneers Riot are currently in rehearsals for an upcoming tour of Europe next month in early February. The band is continuing on in honor of the late great founding Riot guitarist Mark Reale who died from complications from Crohns disease in early 2012 and these dates will be tribute shows to the guitarist.

The band states: "The band decided to continue on in his honor and wishes as well as the blessings from the estate of Reale to keep the music and spirit of Riot alive.

"The continuing members decided to alter the name to Riot V (5) as the fifth chapter of the bands long history as well as Todd Michael Hall being the fifth singer following Guy Speranza (Mar. ‘56–Nov. ‘03), Rhett Forrester (Sept. ‘56-Jan. ‘94), Tony Moore and Mike Dimeo in the sum odd 30 years of the bands existence. The band heads to Italy for a string of tribute dates starting in Brescia, Italy ending in Thessaloniki, Greece then returning home to start recording the new record slated for a summer 2014 release. The touring band for these tribute dates are long time members Mike Flyntz on guitar who has been Reales guitar partner for over 25 years and is joined by long time Riot bassist songwriter Don Van Stavern (Thundersteel, Privilege of Power, Immortal Soul), new vocalist Todd Michael Hall (Burning Starr, Reverence) and Riots “Army of One” drummer Frank Gilchriest (Virgin Steele, Liege Lord) steps in as Bobby Jarzombek is fulfilling his duties with Fates Warning and Sebastian Bach. Riot feel that obviously Reale can never be replaced so they have recruited for live guitar duties former student turned teacher at Mike Flyntz’s guitar school in Long Island New York, 26 year old guitar virtuoso Nick Lee." More...

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Todd Michael Hall Comments On Staying In Reverence

It was recently announced that Reverence vocalist Todd Michael Hall had joined Riot. Todd has now checked in with the following statement clarifying his position in the bands:

"Hey Rev heads. Some of you may have heard that I (Todd) was selected as the new singer for Riot.

"I am psyched about this new opportunity, but apparently some people are mistakenly thinking I have left Reverence and that is not the case. I have already written five songs for our new album and look forward to continuing the band Bryan and I started." More...

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Riot Announces New Singer Todd Michael Hall

Legendary metal act Riot, who lost founder/guitarist Mark Reale due to complications arising from Crohn's Disease in January of 2012, have revealed the name of the new vocalist for the departed Tony Moore....its Todd Michael Hall (Reverance/Jack Starr's Burning Starr). Hall is the fifth singer in the band's existence, so they band is calling itself Riot V. The band previously announced that the new album will be entitled "Chapter Five, Back for the Attack" and is targeted for release in 2014 via SPV/Steamhammer Records.

The full announcement reads: "RIOT would like to thank all of our fans for their undying patience, love and support as we go through a difficult transitional period for the band.

"As all of you know, we lost our inspirational leader, founder and brother Mark Reale last year after a long battle with Crohn’s disease. In Mark’s honor and with the blessing of his father, Tony Reale, we have decided to continue to carry the torch for our fallen comrade.

"There has been a lot of speculation and opinions concerning what the band should do next. We understand the apprehensions held by many, but out of respect for Mark and our legion of fans we have decided to continue to bring you the RIOT music you’ve come to know, love and appreciate throughout the years. We promise to continue on in this same great tradition. We couldn’t move forward without your support.

"We also would like to thank the many singers who tried-out to be a vocalist with RIOT as we worked to replace the great Tony Moore, who has decided to step away from the music business. He has settled down with his wife, Ann and a great job. We thank Tony for joining us on a reunion record and a few dates for our fans and we wish him and his wife nothing but the best; Never Surrender Tony! More...

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Riot Posts "Guess The Singer" Clip

Legendary metal act Riot, who lost founder Mark Reale due to complications arising from Crohn's Disease in January of 2012, have posted a clip featuring the band's new vocalist. Still unannounced, the band has dubbed the clip "Guess the Vocalist," and it features re-recorded tracks "Wings Are For Angels" and "Still Your Man" (from the 2011 "Immortal Soul" album - see review here), as well as snippets of pre-production versions of two new tracks.

Details of the new album are not yet revealed, only that the new release will be entitled "Chapter Five, Back for the Attack" and is targeted for release in 2014 via SPV/Steamhammer Records. This video clip would indicate that an announcement is imminent. The band has indicated that they will announce the winner of the contest in a few days. Enjoy the clip here:

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Riot To Release New Album In 2014

Riot, the band who lost founding member Mark Reale due to complications from Crohn's disease back in January 2012, announced that remaining members will release a new album "Chapter Five, Back for the Attack" in 2014 via SPV/Steamhammer Records.

It is unclear as to whether the band will issue the album under the name Riot or another name (since there exists no original member), nor the current status of whether vocalist Tony Moore has rejoined. However, an extensive press release is impending.

The band posted the following on the Riot Facebook Page: "RIOT: Chapter 5, Back for the Attack! Extensive press release coming soon as well as info and samples for the 2014 release on SPV/Steamhammer (US, Euro) and Avalon/Marquee (Asia)! Thank you FANS for your support! Thank You Mark, this is for YOU and dedicated to YOU! Shine on Metal Warrior!" More...

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OpEd

Cover to Cover: Riot

Last time around I covered Manilla Road’s uber-manly efforts in the world of metal covers. This time we are back and taking a look at the New York heavy metal legends Riot, their “unique” approach to album covers, and honouring the legacy of mastermind Mark Reale who sadly passed away in January this year. Well, we’ll largely just be tearing into Riot’s cover art, but it goes without saying that Riot created some of the best power/speed metal in existence. Seriously, I’m putting a ban on reading this article until you’ve at least heard one track from “Thundersteel” because it’s one of the greatest metal classics ever released. Right? Right, let’s get cracking. More...

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Riot Issues Statement About "Cashing In"

The remaining members of Riot, who recently announced that they will carry on after the tragic loss of founder Mark Reale in January, fired back at critics who claim that the band is "cashing in on the Riot name." The band is writing and recording the follow up to "Immortal Soul" and have over fifteen songs written for the release, but have recently come under fire from unnamed sources.

The statement on the band's official Facebook Page reads as follows:

"FOR THE RECORD! To all the people and other 'so called' pages that dont know what the real true story is and whats going on with Riot. First off, we are NOT cashing in on the name, Riot has never really made lots of money, not even Mark he lived with his parents til the day he passed AND we all have day jobs! We do it for the love of music and have to take time off to play. Mark was our brother and he lived with us and we took care of him up until his untimely passing and we are still deeply saddened by the death of a family member.

"Mike did ALL the guitar work on the Immortal Soul except 4 rhythm tracks that Mark layed because because of his illness he was too shakey to play correctly and It did frustate him. Don wrote most of the songs like he did on Thundersteel and Privilege of Power and has been with Mark since he co-wrote songs on Restless Breed and Born in America back in the early 80's. Mark was at the studio and was pleased with how it was coming out and was proud to call it a Riot record. This is NOT the Rock City line up, this is NOT the Fire Down Under line up, IT IS THE THUNDERSTEEL LINE UP, with the original member of that era, we were ALL fans of the early stuff with Guy and Rhett. Mark and his estates wishes were us to go on and most people want us to! We play songs WE wrote or co-wrote and play a few of Marks songs in tribute to him and the early years!

"There are bands out there playing songs and performing with ONE original guy in the band and some didnt write any of the music, Quiet Riot, Guns n Roses, Great White now Queensryche! and of course Thin Lizzy (well a couple guys, but NOT Phil) but people come out to hear songs they love. Get the REAL or REALE info hear. Mike Flyntz has been taking care of Mr. Reale since Marks death because he is like a son to him now. Have a little compassion and get the real story before you post anything you have NO clue about! Opinions are welcome, but vicious uneducated posts and comments will NOT be tolerated and will be removed and blocked. A press release will be issued soon to let you know whats coming! Shine On believers!"

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Riot To Continue On, Fifteen New Songs Written

According to "The Mark Reale Tribute Page," bassist Don Van Stavern, guitarist Mike Flyntz and drummer Bobby Jarzombek have written new songs for Riot in the style of "Thundersteel" and "Immortal Soul" and are planning big news for the band.

In a post on Facebook: "DVS and Mike have written over 15 new songs in the Thundersteel/ Immortal Soul tradition! Riot is on the move! Great news coming soon...............Shine On, Riot!"

Founder Mark Reale passed away at the end of January due to complications from Crohn's disease. This is the first word that the band will continue on. More...

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OpEd

The Reale Story Of Struggle & Greatness

Pain…the pain affects your lower abdomen. When you sit, you do so very gingerly and even walking is uncomfortable. The ceaselessness pain is so intense it assaults your stomach to the point where your ribs start to separate and nausea forces you to succumb to even more painful, but ironically relieving, evacuation from both ends. Imagine experiencing this in varying degrees for a period of forty plus years while also creating honest, brilliant and universally underrated music for thirty six of those years. Through fourteen albums with Riot and three albums with Westworld, this was the life of Mark Reale. The endless struggle he had with such underwhelming media/fan reaction to his brilliant music only paralleled his near lifelong struggle with Crohn’s disease. Ironically, his epitaph was the eerily prophetic “Immortal Soul.” It was his finest moment and just as he reached that pinnacle of his career it was over. Now the world is left with a largely unappreciated legacy, one which I hold to be even more relevant than the tragic loss of Dimebag Darrell. As long as I am alive, the mastery of Reale will always be remembered. More...

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Mark Reale Funeral Service Details Announced

Riot announced details for the funeral services for founder/guitarist Mark Reale, who passed away on January 25, 2012 due to complications from Crohn's disease. Calling hours will be held on Tuesday, January 31, from 6:00-8:00 P.M. at Porter Loring Mortuary North, San Antonio, Texas (http://www.porterloring.com).

A guestbook can be found here: Guestbook

The living guestbook can be found here: Mark Reale Living Guestbook

A funeral mass will take place: Wednesday, February 1, 2012 @ 12:00 pm. at St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church, 1602 Thousand Oaks, San Antonio, Texas 78232 (http://www.stmarkevangelist.com).

All are welcome and encouraged to attend.

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Riot Guitarist Mike Flyntz Speaks On Mark Reale

Riot guitarist Mike Flyntz spoke out on the passing of founder/guitarist Mark Reale. In a post on Facebook, Flyntz stated:

"I would like to thank everyone for the support and love regarding the passing of my dear friend Mark Reale. I have had the honor to stand next to him on the stage and in the studio for over 22 years. Mark gave me the opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream of recording and writing records, and also touring in support of those records. I was a fan first, getting his autograph after a Riot show at L'Amours when I was in college. Mark was a shy man who didn't talk much unless he was being interviewed or on the phone. Lord knows he could talk on the phone. Mark also loved to laugh. One part of our special relationship was that we could laugh until we were crying, and he would be lying on the floor yelling "please stop" and after 5 minutes of silence all I had to do was look at him and it would start all over. I will forever cherish those moments. As far as a musician, he is the most underrated guitarist, song writer, riff creator, visionary in rock music. He should be in the Rock-n-Roll hall of fame for his vibrato alone. LISTEN TO HIS VIBRATO. His sense of melody was incredible. He taught me so much. There is so much more I need to say about my friend but I have been at a loss of words since his passing. The only comfort I have is that he is out of pain. I will attempt to talk more about it with Fingers, Sunday night during a Mark Reale tribute on Fingers Metal shop on WBAB 102.3 Long Island New York. Thank you everyone! Mike Flyntz"

Reale passed away on January 25, 2012 after suffering a subarachnoid hemorrhage along with lifelong effects and complications due to Crohn's disease.

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SPV/Steamhammer Comments on Reale's Death

SPV/Steamhammer, the label that released Riot's last album "Immortal Soul" featuring founding member and guitarist, Mark Reale, issued the following statement concerning Mark's passing.

"With deep sadness we have to say goodbye to one of the most underrated guitar players and composers on this planet: Mark Reale. More...

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Headline News

Riot Guitarist Passes Away

Riot guitarist and founding member Mark Reale passed away yesterday (January 25th) due to complications from Crohn's disease. He was fifty seven years old. He had been in a coma since January 11th as a result of a subarachnoid hemorrhage. He had battled the disease for most of his life, and was bravely attempting to practice to perform with the band at their scheduled shows, before his condition worsened. His band mates have issued the following statement:

"To friends and fans of Mark Reale and Riot, we are deeply saddened to confirm that Mark has lost his battle with a lifelong illness. Your thoughts and prayers are appreciated by Mark's family, friends, and bandmates at this difficult time."

Metal Blade founder and CEO Brian Slagel commented:

"I was a huge fan of Riot's Fire Down Under album and got to interview them for my fanzine. Great guys and I was lucky enough to finally re-issue Fire Down Under and the other early Riot albums on Metal Blade. We signed the band for their second run, so to speak, and put out some records in the '90s that did well, especially in Europe and Japan. It was a pleasure working with them and Mark was always a kind soul — an amazing player who really has a big time place in the history of metal. One of the really nice guys who put out some incredible stuff."

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Riot's Reale Suffered Subarachnoid Hemmorage

More information on what transpired when Riot's Mark Reale was transported to the hospital on January 11, 2012 (see MU article at this location) has surfaced from the stricken guitarist's official website.

The site's Websmaters have been posting information about the Reale's condition, of which the latest indicated that the Riot founder suffered a subarachnoid hemmorhage as a result of a seizure and has been in a coma since his admission. The condition is when bleeding occurs in the area between the arachnoid membrane and the pia mater surrounding the brain.

Reale is also facing other critical conditions as a result of his lifelong battle with Crohn's disease and is under the care of San Antonio physicians. At the behest of Reale's family Riot has continued its live dates, the latest of which is the 70000 Tons of Metal cruise which is ongoing.

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Tonight's Riot Show Canceled

After a show last night at BB Kings in New York City, Riot's next scheduled show for tonight in West Springfield, VA at Jaxx has been cancelled. When the band arrived at the venue today they were informed that the venue did not have the permits in place to have a show this evening.

The members of Riot would like to apologize to all their fans and hope to make up the show in the near future. Riot's show in Rochester, NY on January 20th will go on as scheduled as well as the band's appearance on the 70,000 Tons Of Metal Boat Cruise January 23rd - January 27th.

In other news, Riot recently issued an update on the health of guitarist Mark Reale, who was hospitalized earlier this month.

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Footage Of Riot Performance In NYC Hits Web

New York traditional metal band Riot proceeded with its scheduled performances at the urging of founder/guitarist Mark Reale and his family. Reale was sidelined when he was recently admitted to the hospital for complications resulting from Crohn's disease. A fan video from the performance at BB Kings in New York City on January 18, 2012 surfaced on the web this morning. The band continued as a four piece with second guitarist Mike Flyntz flying solo.

The following are the remaining dates for the Reale-less Riot:

Jan. 19 - West Springfield, VA – Jaxx
Jan. 20 - Rochester, NY - Montage Music Hall
Jan. 23-27 - Miami, FL - 70,000 Tons Of Metal

Check out Riot's performance of "Riot" from the band's latest album "Immortal" here:

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Riot Posts Statement On Health Of Mark Reale

Riot posted an update on the health of Mark Reale, who recently was admitted to the hospital for complications due to Crohn's disease in the following statement on Facebook:

"Dear FB friends, please find the full update on Marks' health on our website.

"Due to complications arising from treatment Mark remains hospitalized in San Antonio and will not be healthy enough to appear as scheduled.

"At the strong urging of Mark's family, we decided to perform the shows without Mark on guitar.

"While we are saddened by these developments, Riot's music has been Mark's lifeblood for over 30 years. We have struggled with idea of performing without him, and we are continuing to prepare with heavy hearts, but the entire Riot organization has agreed on the importance of bringing our music to the fans who have supported us for so long.

"Please watch this site for news on Mark's recovery, and we ask that friends and fans pray for the best possible outcome.

"Thank you for continuing to support Riot during this difficult time, and we will see you at the shows.

"Mike, Tony, Bobby and Don"

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Headline News

Riot's Mark Reale Admitted To Hospital

Riot founder/guitarist Mark Reale has been admitted to the hospital due to complications of Crohn's disease. Crohn's disease is a form of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). It usually affects the intestines.

The band posted the following on its official website: "Riot founder and guitarist Mark Reale has been admitted to a San Antonio hospital in critical condition due to complications of Crohn's disease. Subsequently, there is a possibility that he may not appear in the band's upcoming performances in the Northeast and aboard the 70,000 Tons of Metal Cruise to Grand Cayman.

"Mark has been battling Crohn's for most of his life, working and performing while enduring almost constant pain and the side effects of treatment for his illness. He was in Texas bravely attempting to practice for the shows, but was felled by a severe onset of Crohn's symptoms leaving him in the Intensive Care Unit at an undisclosed facility.

"The band has agreed that the performances will take place as scheduled with the possibility that Mark may not be well enough in time to appear. Riot would also like to acknowledge that Mark has been struggling with these symptoms throughout the production of their new album, Immortal Soul, and that guitarist Mike Flyntz recorded a major portion of the guitars on the album with Mark's creative direction while he was unable to perform.

"For this reason, fans can be assured that the show will be as exciting as anything Riot has ever staged, even if Mike needs to hold down double guitar duty. Mark will be sorely missed in this event, but the shows will go on.

"We ask fans and friends of the band to pray for Mark's speedy recovery, and to support the band in our efforts to bring you the Riot reunion shows that have been so long in the making. While Mark's family insists on privacy during this difficult time, your prayers and good wishes will make it to his bedside until he is able to return to the stage.

"Many thanks and Shine On!
Mike, Tony, Bobby and Don" More...

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