For the album, see Rata Blanca (album).
Rata Blanca's frontman Adrían Barilari and guitarrist Walter Giardino in concert, 2008
|Origin||Buenos Aires, Argentina|
|Genres||Heavy metal, power metal, neoclassical metal, hard rock|
|Years active||1986–1997, 2000–Present|
|Labels||PolyGram, Ariola, Sony BMG, PopArt Music (Sony), Icarus Music|
|Associated acts||Joe Lynn Turner, Doogie White, Mägo de Oz, Rowek, Glenn Hughes, Horcas, Hermética|
|Past members||Saúl Blanch|
Guillermo Sánchez (†)
Rata Blanca (White Rat in English) is a heavy metal band from Argentina, formed in 1986. It is considered the most famous metal band in its country, and one of the most important of the genre in Latin America.
The guitarist Walter Giardino replaced Osvaldo Civile in V8 for a little time, and left the band when his songs were rejected. His friend Roberto Cosseddu, bassist of Kamikaze, helped him to record a demo tape with those songs. The drummer Gustavo Rowek, who had also left V8 a short time before, declined his projects with Civile and joined Giardino. The session musicians Rodolfo Cava (singer) and Yulie Ruth (bass player) completed the line-up that recorded the demo. The songs were "Chico callejero", "Rompe el hechizo", "Gente del sur" and "La bruja blanca". Seeking stable members, the band took Saúl Blanch as singer, who was working in the hard rock band Plus. They met the bass player Guillermo Sánchez with the help of Giardino's friend Sergio Berdichevsky, member of WC at that point.
Rata Blanca made their first concert on August 15, 1987 in the Luz y Fuerza theater. Saúl Blanch left the band, and he was replaced by Carlos Périgo, who composed the song "Días Duros". Périgo left the band soon after that. Rodolfo Cava returned for a brief time, and Shito Molina got ill and could not sing anymore. As the band was about to record their first album and needed a singer immediately, Saúl Blanch returned to the band and helped record it. The album Rata Blanca was released in 1988, with nine songs. On that year they took part in the "Halley en Obras" concert, along with Alakrán, JAF and Kamikaze.
Polygram requested that the band could create an album which would have high sales in the first semester to renew the contract, and the band made fourfold the required number of sales. The keyboard player Hugo Bistolfi joined the band in 1989, and the singer Adrián Barilari replaced Saúl Blanch. The band subsequently made their second album Magos, espadas y rosas, which contained the popular songs "Mujer amante" and "La leyenda del hada y el mago". It was a successful release, and in its wake the band appeared in the TV show Ritmo de la Noche, and played in cumbia concert halls because typical rock venues could not accommodate their large audiences.
The album was followed by "Guerrero del Arco Iris", and a concert at the José Amalfitani stadium. The band ended their contract with Polygram recording a live album, made at the Opera Theater with an orchestra, but this album was released years later. Once in BMG they made an EP called "El Libro Oculto". This work was more aggressive, both in instrumental style and lyrical style, as a result of the criticism from heavy metal fans towards the band.
Changes in lineup and reunion
Barilari did not like the new style found in "El Libro Oculto" and left the band after a concert in Obras. Bistolfi followed him, and both of them created the band Alianza.
Barilari and Bistolfi were replaced by Mario Ian on vocals and Javier Retamozo on keyboards. With this line-up they released Entre el Cielo y el Infierno ("Between Heaven and Hell"). Later that year, they were invited to play in the "Festival Monsters of Rock" in São Paulo, Brazil, along with Ozzy Osbourne, Therapy?, and Alice Cooper. They released another album with new singer Gabriel Marian called "Rata Blanca VII". The group disbanded in late 1997. Gustavo Rowek and Sergio Berdichevsky created the band Nativo, and Giardino continued with Walter Giardino Temple.
Barilari and Bistolfi were invited to a concert of Walter Giardino Temple in 2000, which led to a reunion of the band. Rowek and Berdichevsky refused to be part of the reunion. The radio La Mega aired frequently the old "Mujer amante" song, generating a renewed interest in the band. The new album, El camino del fuego, released in 2002, was a huge success. Its follow-up, the 2005 album La llave de la puerta secreta had great sales and went into Gold even before being officially released.
Rata Blanca played with famous member of Deep PurpleGlenn Hughes as a guest at the Gran Rex Theater, in 2003. They played the band's hits as well as Deep Purple's classic songs. In order to gain a more international profile, Giardino approached former Rainbow singer Doogie White to record an English version of the Forgotten Kingdom album in 2009.
2010 - Present
Early in 2010, Rata Blanca historical keyboardist Hugo Bistolfi left the band and was replaced by Danilo Moschen, a former member of Barilari's soloist band.
In 2013, original members Gustavo Rowek, Sergio Berdichevsky and Saul Blanch reunited with Rata Blanca for some presentations. In 2015 Rata Blanca released their tenth studio album, "Tormenta Eléctrica".
In May 2017, bassplayer Guillermo Sánchez died due to sepsis. A few days before, singer Adrián Barilari announced that Guillermo was in poor health condition.
- Saúl Blanch: vocals
- Walter Giardino: lead guitar
- Guillermo Sánchez: bass
- Gustavo Rowek: drums
- Sergio Berdichevsky: rhythm guitar
- Pablo Finger: keyboards (1988)
- Hugo Bistolfi: keyboards (1989–1993, 2000–2009) as Guest (1988)
- Mario Ian: vocals (1993–1996)
- Gabriel Marian: vocals (1996–1997)
- Doogie White: vocals on English versions (2009–2010)
- Javier Retamozo: keyboards (1993–1997)
- Saúl Blanch: vocals (1987, 1988–1989)
- Sergio Berdichevsky: guitar (1986–1997)
- Shito Molina: vocals (1988)
- Rodolfo Cava: vocals (1986)
- Gustavo Rowek; drums (1986–1997)
- Guillermo Sánchez (deceased): Bass (1986–1997, 2000–2017)
Live and compilation albums
- "La Leyenda del Hada y El Mago"
- "Rata Blanca" (2001)
- "Teatro Gran Rex" (2001)
- "Highway on Fire (EP)" (2002)
Spain's Mägo de Oz recorded a version of "Mujer amante".
Rata Blanca VII is a Rata Blanca album released in 1997. Recorded at El Pie Studios, Buenos Aires, between April 10 and May 30, 1997. It is the band's last album before their separation. The album featuring a young Gabriel Marian on vocals is a very different from the rest of the discography, and heavily influenced by modern metal of the era. The album artwork was designed by Renata Schussheim.
- Madame X (Madame X)- (W.Giardino)
- Rey De La Revolución (King of the Revolution) - (W.Giardino)
- Pastel De Rocas (Cake of Rocks) - (W.Giardino)
- La Historia De Un Muchacho (The Story of a Guy) - (W.Giardino)
- La Canción Del Sol (The Song of the Sun) - (W.Giardino)
- Héroes - (Heroes) (W.Giardino)
- Vuelo Nocturno (Night Flight) -(W.Giardino)
- La Caja (The Box) - (W.Giardino, G.Rowek, J. Retamozo,S. Berdichevsky)
- Ella (She) - (W.Giardino, J.Retamozo)
- Mr. Cósmico (Mr. Cosmic) - (W.Giardino)
- Vieja Lucy (Old Lucy) - (W.Giardino, G.Rowek)
- Viejo Amigo (Old Friend) - (W.Giardino)
- Anarquía (Anarchy) - (W.Giardino, G. Rowek, G.Sanchez, S.Berdichevsky, J.Retamozo)
- Líbranos Del Mal (Deliver us from Evil) - Instrumental - (W.Giardino)
- Afo Verde - Art direction
- Christian Algarañaz - Recording
- Michael Tacci - Mixing
- Bernie Grundman - Mastering
- Sebastian Losicer - Recording assistant
- Adrian Taverna - Pre-production assistant
- Eduardo Bergallo - Pre-production mastering
- Renata Schussheim - Album artwork
- Jose Luis Massa - Photography
- Gonzalo Cabré - Band assistant
- Todo Barros - Band assistant
- Jose Luis Botto - Management