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Black List

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Album Review

Here's a little-known glam-metal fact: Phil Lewis was not the first frontman for Sunset Strip favorites L.A. Guns. There were actually a few others who fronted the band before Lewis (Axl Rose was rumored to be an early member), one of whom was a gentleman named Paul Black. The Black-led version of L.A. Guns (which also included Tracii Guns and Mick Cripps, two members who would later appear on the group's recordings with Lewis) managed to demo quite a bit of material during their short tenure together, which serves as the basis for 2005's Black List. As expected, these '80s-era demos are not exactly up to snuff sonically with the eventual studio albums by the group, but for hardcore fans, there are a few areas of interest. Tops on the list would be early versions of a pair of tracks that would later turn up on the group's self-titled 1988 debut, "Show No Mercy" and "One More Reason to Die," while the rest of the tracks never appeared on any L.A. Guns releases. As evidenced by such tracks as "Love and Hate," Black's vocals were reminiscent at times to those of W.A.S.P.'s Blackie Lawless, while the album-opening "Stranded in L.A." shows that the group was harder edged than the local competition at the time (Poison, Warrant, etc.).


Formed: 1983 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Although veterans of the Sunset Strip's hair metal scene, L.A. Guns are also known for being one of the two bands (along with Hollywood Rose) that merged in the mid-'80s to form Guns N' Roses. Formed in 1983, the group's first lineup included Tracii Guns and vocalist Axl Rose, the latter of whom eventually left to form his own group with childhood friend Izzy Stradlin. Rose and Guns decided to combine their two bands in 1985, thus creating the earliest incarnation of Guns N' Roses. Tracii Guns handed...
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Black List, L.A. Guns
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