Long-time sleaze merchants L.A. Guns have managed to continue carving out a career for themselves, even though their style of music was kicked out of the mainstream 25 years ago. Although left for a couple of albums in the late ‘90s, its mostly been vocalist Phil Lewis steering the ship with some combination of new blood and original members supporting him, apart from Tracii Guns who left the band in a huff. Well, as you can imagine, Guns and Lewis have made up and decided to make another album together. Healthy dose of skepticism aside, there’s no denying that the best L.A. Guns albums have included both of those guys in the ranks, even into the lean years when they released kick ass albums like WAKING THE DEAD.
Setting aside the band member drama, L.A. Guns have presented fans with THE MISSING PEACE. To cut right to the chase, let’s just ask the question: does the album deliver? I’m happy to say, the answer is “Hell yes!”. Everything fans love about L.A. Guns is alive & well with this album and the band is playing with a fire not heard since the aforementioned WAKING THE DEAD. “It’s All the Same to Me” kicks the album off in saucy, sleazy fashion and would fit perfectly on COCKED & LOADED. “Speed” might be one of the heaviest songs the band has ever done, while “Don’t Bring a Knife to a Gunfight” might be one of the dirtiest, meanest, and catchiest tracks the band has ever released.
I won’t make this a dull track-by-track review but suffice it to say that this album contains all the hallmarks that L.A. Guns is known for and simultaneously builds on them as well. That’s damn impressive for a band this long in the tooth. I have no problem saying that THE MISSING PEACE stands as one of the best albums this band has ever recorded and easily rivals their classic early releases. Lewis and Guns still have that song writing magic, which makes this a thankfully successful reunion. This album is a must-have for hard rock fans.
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