L.A. Guns ( Riley/Nickels Version) – Renegades
(Golden Robot Records – 2020)
Yes, there are 2 different bands with the exact same name which for those who do not know any better can get baffled and confused by.
Like the other version feat. Tracii Guns & Phil Lewis, this also has two original members of the orginal outfit from the late 80s', being Drummer, Steve Riley & Bassist, Kelly Nickels plus later ex-Bassist, now Guitarist in this outfit, Scotty Griffin and Vocalist, Kurt Frohlich.
Personally, I think this version should have a totally different name instead of using this one – my opinion and I have the right to it before you argue against me since the other one was here first, regardless of the number of original members or not.
Anyway, that's that out the way, how does the album fair musically, vocally and songwise? Damn fine actually with fresh sounding hard rock that harks back to the original band sound and keeps it in date with now without them being something they are not – if the makes any sense.
Opening Rocker, 'Crawl' sets the standard from the start with 'You Can't Walk Away' being a killer power ballad that's fit for radio any day of the week that has an ELO meets Rod Stewart kinda 70's and 80's dreamlike feel to it.
Title track 'Renegades' is a hard hitting cracking number with some stinging guitar work but I have got a gut feeling that a lot of autotune have been used on these vocals but would like to be proved wrong with the album coming to a pulverising ending with the blasting 'Don't Wanna Know' that has an almost Motorhead vibe to it especially in the bass groove.
Overall it's pretty decent.
By Glenn Milligan