It's been seven years since the last release, Tales From The Strip, and now the proper version of L.A. Guns featuring Phil Lewis return with a new album. This is yet another album I would love to love, because I so dug their first three releases. Most of the nineties for the Hollywood rockers was nothing but bad, mostly due to change in musical direction and problems within the band, I would figure. In the early 2000's they made somewhat of a comeback and has released a couple of good albums since then.
The songs on Hollywood Forever have a clear eighties vibe. It sounds like before, but most songs just passes by, as they are in fact not equally good or great as their old stuff. On the last couple of records, they have created great songs mixed with good and decent tracks. Now, most songs are just okay, with parts here and there that hit you real hard. I don't want to say that it's bad in anyway, but I'm looking for that feeling that wants me to listen to the album over and over again, but it's not there.
It's still dirty rock 'n' roll, as the elements of L.A. Guns are still there; the Hollywood theme, women, boogie vibes, etc., so I'm glad they don't try to rejuvenate themselves musical wise like the debacles about fifteen years ago. Talk about lesson learned.
The title track is a fast rocking track and a good album opener. You Better Not Love Me is by far the best song, with its great verse and catchy chorus and I wish all the songs could have this impact. In fact, the first half of the album is way better than the second. It's like they suddenly ran out of fuel.
When slowly aging Mr. Lewis has lost some power in his voice, but it still works, as he never was one of the world's most fantastic vocalists, and like for instance Vince Neil of Mötley Crüe and Stephen Pearcy of Ratt, more known for characteristic vocal cords suitable for the music than for his skills.
Former bassplayer Kelly Nickels makes a guest appearance on Venus Bomb and Phil's woman Junko, plays the keys on a couple of songs and that's just about how cool this album gets. Like I said above, it's not bad, but they have created so much better music through the years, so I'm a bit disappointed.
also review of: Cocked