Album Reviews

L.A. Guns – Shrinking Violet (Deluxe Reissue)

Released by  Favored Nations

Released on May 25, 2010

Genre: Hard Rock/Glam

Links: http://www.lagunsofficial.com

Line Up

Jizzy Pearl: lead vocals

Tracii Guns: guitar

Johnny Crypt: bass

Steve Riley: drums

Gilby Clarke: Additional guitar on “Dreamtime”

Teddy Andreadis: keyboards

Tracklist

1. “Girl You Turn Me On”

2. “Shrinking Violet”

3. “Dreamtime”

4. “Barbed Wire”

5. “I’ll Be There”

6. “California”

7. “Cherries”

8. “Big Lil’ Thing”

9. “Bad Whisky”

10. “Decide” (Bonus Track)

11. “Rip and Tear” (Bonus Track)

12. “Never Enough” (Bonus Track)

13. “The Ballad Of Jayne” (Bonus Track)

14. “One More Reason” (Bonus Track)

LA Guns a term always associated with the “glam metal” scene for years and years, the band clearly became known as of  the leading acts in the California gold rush of glam/metal days. If you you weren’t aware for you newbies and young bloods out there, Tracii Guns and Axel Rose formed the original Guns n’ roses lineup although short lived as Traci and the original members left the band only to be replaced by the successful lineup up Slash, Mckagan and Adler and the rest is “history”.  Some 10 years later they signed a deal with Steve Vai’s record company “Favored Nations” to re-release “Shrinking Violet” as a deluxe reissue and honestly the production needed help on the original which is one thing you notice right off the bat here, the music sounds more stronger and crisper. Some fans never swallowed the fact that without the voice of Lewis, that Guns could still deliver something creative to the world.  The fact is that on this reissue that they might have broken through on just what the doctor ordered.

The thundering starter is the energy packed “Girl You Turn Me On” which sounds more vibrant then I remember on the original release. Sure Jizzy Pearl is no Phil Lewis, but not many can fit into the enigmatic singer’s style. On tracks like “Dreamtime” Pearl does a nice job of upping the anti with a soaring vocal pass as this nice power ballad adds a strong touch in a interesting place on the record. “I’ll be There” plows along nicely with another pounding drum beat to push the song along. The Bonus tracks here add to the purchase because they are such classics from the “Cocked and Loaded” days ‘Rip and Tear” , “Never Enough” and “The Ballad of Jayne”, and some of them never heard before as extended cuts.

As far as the total package stands, it does improve on the production in a major way, the sound overall sounds more explosive. I know the nae sayers will forever dismissed this one as Pearl was only featured on this album and without giving it full attention you will probably miss what the band has to offer here. The bonus tracks are performed lively with a spark live version cut of  “Rip And Tear” hitting the 9 minute mark. As a true La Guns fans you probably would be best replacing the old Shrinking Violet with this Deluxe cut as it will sound and feel better then the original. Knock it back!!!

Written by Denys

Ratings Denys  8/10


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