For starters, let’s just say that this is Steve Riley’s version of L.A. Guns and not the other one that features Phil Lewis and Tracii Guns. I won’t go into the details of this whole conflict or compare the two outfits. But I will say this: as a fan of the band, I wish things could be better and both parties would settle their differences. Anyway…Steve Riley has on board with him bassist Kelly Nickels thus adding a sense of authenticity and originality to the band as we get two members of the classic line-up of L.A. Guns. Naturally, Riley is the closest thing to what we could call “the sole constant member” throughout the years.
“Renegades” is a good record and an overall respectable effort by L.A. Guns. Of course, it can’t see eye to eye with the first three masterpieces but that’s really not important. Most of the songs have that 80s, L.A. aura while there are certain tracks that could have easily fit in “Hollywood Vampires”. I am talking about the excellent “Lost Boys”, “Crawl” and “Why Ask Why”. These three songs vividly remind of the golden Sunset Srip era of the late 80s. The only negative aspect is the production that could have been better and more powerful.
All in all, “Renegades” is an album that will surely satisfy the needs of every hard rocker out there as it will bring in mind those great moments of the genre. Come to think about it, this is an album that has a lot in common with what Gilby Clarke has released lately. But, I will say it again…I wish that Steve, Kelly, Phil and Tracii will reunite eventually and bring forth once again the glorious L.A. Guns name.
Highlight: Steve Riley and Kelly Nickels are definitely survivors of an era that is long gone but not forgotten.