RIOT V, the band featuring members of legendary metal pioneers RIOT, will release a new studio album, “Mean Streets”, on February 16, 2024 via Atomic Fire Records. The follow-up to 2018’s “Armor Of Light” contains 12 tracks which were recorded by Bruno Ravel in New Jersey. Ravel also mixed the LP while Bart Gabriel took care of its mastering. Artwork was provided by Gyula Havancsák (ACCEPT, STRATOVARIUS, BRAINSTORM).

The official lyric video for the album’s first single, “High Noon”, can be seen below.

RIOT is a band name that makes every metalhead’s mind ring alert — in a positive way for sure. Many iconic musicians and bands listing them as an important influence, the New York City-born group has definitely paved the way for the hard ‘n’ heavy scene essentially. Their early musical steps — “Rock City” (1977),“Narita” (1979),“Fire Down Under” (1981) and “Restless Breed” (1982),to only name a few — made them grow fastly, following an artist development from hard rock to more metal sounds what resulted in their arguably most iconic record, “Thundersteel” (1988). The band’s path was unfortunately also marked by many strokes of fate which led to significant lineup changes. Especially the death of founding member Mark Reale made a big impact on the group and eventually Reale‘s “Thundersteel” bandmate and songwriting partner Don Van Stavern decided to continue the legacy and came up with an idea out of respect to add “V” (Roman numeral five) for the fifth chapter of the group as well as the recorded singer. 2013 was the year that RIOT V was born! The outfit kept writing and releasing music honoring their legacy — more successfully than ever before. The musical foundation titled “Unleash The Fire” was followed by another furious album that even made RIOT V hit the official German album chart for the very first time in their prominent history (“Armor Of Light” reached position No. 27).

Van Stavern, who currently manages and handles affairs for the band, states: “We are extremely excited to release our 17th RIOT record ‘Mean Streets’ with the mighty Atomic Fire Records label! We went back to the roots a bit on this one with some hard rockers and of course power metal stylings. Our new pre-release lyric video ‘High Noon’ is a song I wrote with Mark Reale in mind. He loved the Old West and wrote songs about it as well [‘Restless Breed’, ‘Gunfighter’ etc.] and the music is a reminiscence on ‘Thundersteel’/‘Privilege Of Power’! Enjoy, metal warriors, more awesomeness is on the way!”

Vocalist Todd Michael Hall adds: “I am really excited for the people to hear ‘Mean Streets’. We are evolving well with one foot rooted in the past and one foot pointing toward to future.”

“Mean Streets” track listing:

01. Hail To The Warriors
02. Feel The Fire
03. Love Beyond The Grave
04. High Noon
05. Before This Time
06. Higher
07. Mean Streets
08. Open Road
09. Mortal Eyes
10. Lost Dreams
11. Lean Into It
12. No More

Hardly any other metal act has such a long and absorbing history behind it. Since the quintet formed in 1975, they have been hit by several severe strokes of fate during their long career. Three deceased members — Rhett Forester (R.I.P. 1994),Guy Speranza (R.I.P. 2003) and Mark Reale (R.I.P. 2012) — have left their mark on the four decades of RIOT‘s band history.

After the death of Mark Reale and the departure of Tony Moore, Todd Michael Hall (from Michigan),completed the lineup of RIOT, which changed its name to RIOT V and moved forward under the auspices of the two long-term members and main songwriters Donnie van Stavern (bass) and Mike Flyntz (guitar).

Many artists name-check RIOT as an important influence of their musical career and have paid tribute to the power metal godfathers on multiple occasions. The list is long and includes several well-known acts such as HAMMERFALL (“Flight Of The Warrior”),LUCA TURILLI’S RHAPSODY (“Thundersteel”),AXEL RUDI PELL (“Warrior”) and newcomers such as NIGHT DEMON (“Road Racin'”),ALPHA TIGER (“Flight Of The Warrior”),SAVAGE MASTER (“Swords And Tequila”) and STALLION (“Rock City”).

RIOT V 2023 is:

Todd Michael Hall – vocals
Mike Flyntz – guitars
Nick Lee – guitars
Don Van Stavern – bass
Frank Gilchriest – drums

Photo collage credit: Randy Caballero / Doug Julien / Anthony Lopardo





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