Stephen Pearcy is still refusing to tour again with Ratt, though he now says he would consider a reunion studio project -- on one condition. "If it's the original four guys, that would be cool," Pearcy told Earl Skakel on the Inappropriate Earl podcast. "If it's not, well, then you'll get what you got before -- [2010's] 'Infestation' or the [1990] self-titled record. But until then, we'll see."

Barring this unlikihood, things will seemingly remain as they are, with Ratt continuing forward alongside new vocalist Todd Cage -- and Pearcy is fine with that. "The heyday is over with, you know what I mean?" he added. "Some people like to live that heyday 24 hours a day, even at their age. I don't. There's better things to do."

Or course, that inevitably means going it alone on stage, but Pearcy has grown to appreciate these smaller-scale events. "I do have a better time [my solo band]," he said. "There's less drama and there's less overall business structure; it's more back to basics. And like I say, I've spent my time in this beast I created, and I'm enjoying what I do."

Looking back, Pearcy says Ratt should have split more than a decade ago. He said something fundamental changed with the AIDS-related death of Robbin Crosby in 2002.

"I knew it would never be the same -- and it didn't matter if we went out there and did what we did, or continued doing it," said Pearcy, who had three stints with Ratt in 1971–92, 1996–2000 and 2006–14. "It's never gonna be the same. No disrespect to Carlos [Cavazo], who's an amazing guitarist and person, or [John] Corabi, or whoever else stepped in. It's just not the same, and it never will be, and I knew it was. And hence all the catastrophe that followed."