Chris Loomis

L.A. Guns @ The Coach House – 08/17/2019

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2019 and L.A. Guns standout as the premier Rock n Roll band from the days of the Sunset Strip genre of music and they proved that on Saturday night August 17 at The Coach House in San Juan Capistrano. The reunion of Phil Lewis and Tracii Guns in 2016 led to 2017’s release of The Missing Peace, a rock-solid slab of classic L.A. Guns with a modern flare proved that Lewis and Guns still had the chemistry responsible for the hits back in the day. Well in 2019 they outdid The Missing Peace with the release of The Devil You Know – without a doubt one of the finest Rock records released this year and a record that includes elements of he classics, some doomy Black Sabbath riffage and Lewis’ trademark vocals.

Guns and Lewis along with bass player Johnny Martin, drummer Scot Coogan and second guitarist Ace Von Johnson make up the most talented lineup this band has had as they opened the night with “Over the Edge”. Lewis hit the stage in a black fedora as the duo of Tracii Guns and Ace Von Johnson wasted no time showing off their licks by harmonizing the solo center stage. Early in the set the band played a scorching rendition of the title track off The Devil You Know that had Guns riffing his mind out with the heavy breakdown in the middle of the song that sounded killer live. Lewis appeared with a bright red devil mask and sang through the tune wearing that adding to the epic-ness of the song – a modern day classic for sure.

All the hits were accounted for – “Sex Action”, “Electric Gypsy” and “Never Enough” . . . Lewis and Guns took a seat on the drum riser for “Crystal Eyes” and the beginning of “The Ballad of Jayne”, the later being one of the most beautiful rock ballads out there. Things sped up again with “One More Reason” and then a killer version of “Speed” off The Missing Peace, such a fun song with Lewis wearing a pair of racing goggles as he blasted out the lyrics.

Drummer Scot Coogan has an impressive pedigree in the Rock n Roll world, most recently as drummer for Ace Frehley. Coogan joined the band earlier this year and has proven to be a huge asset with his hard hitting technique and amazing back up vocals. Coogan’s partner in crime Johnny Martin on bass is a pure Rock n Roll maniac playing that bass with conviction as he wails on the backup vocals – Martin looks like he was taken straight out of the Ramones with his straight black hair and leather jacket. Then there is long time Faster Pussycat guitarist Ace Von Johnson . . . this guy brings the perfect blend of attitude and charisma to the band that compliments his killer guitar playing. Again this lineup is phenomenal!!!

Tracii Guns was having a blast playing his new Gibson guitar that Joe Bonamassa recently gifted him and Lewis made sure everyone was aware of that. Guns and Lewis looked to be having so much fun together onstage  (as did the entire band) and that just elevated the vibe of the show. The night ended with Lewis thanking all for spending the night with them vs paying hundreds of dollars to see other bands try to play and then L.A. Guns RIPPED (no pun intended) into “Rip & Tear”.

There is no band that no other band from this era can hold a candle to L.A. Guns to this day either live or with new music – nobody! Catch L.A. Guns when they hit your town, a night not to be missed!

Set List:

Over the Edge | Show No Mercy | Sex Action | The Devil You Know | Electric Gypsy | Some Lie 4 Love | Kiss My Love Goodbye | Gone Honey | I Wanna Be Your Man | Never Enough | Crystal Eyes | The Ballad of Jayne | One More Reason | Speed | Rip and Tear

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