Long-running band L.A. Guns continue their recent trend of releasing great albums with their brand new one “Black Diamonds”. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, something incredible happens when Tracii Guns and Phil Lewis are in a band together. There is a chemistry that these two have that makes for outstanding rock music. Since their latest union, the band has reclaimed the fire and energy that they had in the 80s and Black Diamonds is another testament that these guys are running on a full tank of gasoline when a lot of bands from that era are running on fumes now.
Starting with “You Betray” the band rips and tears through your ears and then swings it over to the best ballad the band has done since “The Ballad Of Jayne” with “Diamonds”. If “Diamonds” was released as a single in the late 80s or early 90s, it would have been a smash hit radio single for the band. And, ultimately, that’s what is so great about L.A. Guns nowadays. They play with the same fire and intensity that they had when they were chart-topping during the Sunset Strip scene. Tracii Guns incorporates his love for Led Zeppelin in his playing in several songs while maintaining the L.A. Guns signature sound throughout. Tracii is simply on fire with a lot of solos and in-your-face riffs on song after song. Phil Lewis hasn’t lost a step and his voice sounds as good as it did with the band’s debut album.
Black Diamonds is a cohesive album with a nice flow of songs that make you want to listen to it over and over again. And, with each repeated listen it just gets better and better.
It’s a crying shame that because this album was released on the same day as Metallica’s new album “72 Seasons”, most of the critics and press are giving Metallica most of the limelight and discussion. Clearly, L.A. Guns came from the same era, but unlike Metallica, they still have the same energy and sound that brought them fame in the first place. Don’t overlook “Black Diamonds”, as it really is a spectacular, classic-sounding album not to be missed!