Album Review by Mark Bayross
What happens when middle-aged rockers manage to survive the ravages of drink, drugs and groupies? Some disappear into the night, back to whatever life they led before, some find an entirely new following thanks to the wonders of global television, and the rest?…well, they just carry on.
Amazingly, despite numerous opportunities, the Grim Reaper has claimed neither legendary Motley Crue bassist Nikki Sixx nor Tracii Guns (he of LA Guns and – originally – Guns n’ Roses), and the two have formed Brides of Destruction. Also along for the ride are drummer Scot Coogan, singer London LeGrand, and Adema’s Kris Kohls, who drums on half the songs.
Given the line-up, you would be forgiven for expecting poodle-permed LA sleaze rock, especially given its current, and hopefully brief, resurrection at the hands of The Darkness, but the sound here is punchier with a surprising injection of modernity. Of course, Sixx, Guns and co. have ears and have undoubtedly moved with the times, and the production job by Steves Bruno and Thompson (the latter having worked with the likes of Metallica and Korn) will have helped, but fans of their glory days may well be surprised.
Opener SHUT THE FUCK UP, a collision of old and nu metal, sums up the sound – chugging guitars meet hair rock swagger – and this stays on course through the album’s nine tracks, taking in the Soundgarden-sounding I GOT A GUN and the feedback-drenched REVOLUTION. There are even pop hooks to be found here – there’s no reason why a song like LIFE couldn’t do the business as a single.
Only NATURAL BORN KILLERS and the G n’ R twang of closing ballad ONLY GET SO FAR have a hint of 80s hair rock about them, and maybe the immediacy of this album is partly due to the fact that the creative forces at work here were grounded in much simpler times.
A fun record that may well bridge the gap between ageing trad rock fans and hoodie-wearing teen metallers.