“We’re foreigners in a far away land, my friend”. Jared James Nichols grins as he says those words to bass player Gregg Cash, but he does, unusually, have a point. Lord knows how many times JJN and his boys have been over to this country in the last couple of years, but it probably doesn’t feel like a second home tonight. The crowd is quieter than he’s used to (or he deserves to be truthful) and if this looked like a bit of an odd tour for the modern guitar hero with the cool dude surfer air when it was announced, then so it proves. There is, though, no denying that in the brilliant “Last Chance” the trio have an opener that many would sell their souls for, and there is equally no argument from me that the songs he plays from last year’s wonderful “Black Magic” record should propel him to whatever big leagues he wants to play in. Likewise, the tunes he picks from his debut “Old Glory And The Wild Revival” prove his songwriting ability and the funky interlude proves the band is on top form. Finishing like he always does with Mountain’s “Mississippi Queen” – a song he was surely born to play – should bring an end to a joyous set, but there was little energy from the audience. That’s fine, though JJN will have other nights. One thing is for sure, he’ll be back.

There’s a moment, when they are halfway through “Electric Gypsy”, to be exact, that Phil Lewis and Tracii Guns are sharing the microphone and Lewis turns his back to where I am sitting. Printed on his waistcoat it simply says: LA Guns, Hollywood.

On one hand that is just a rock star wearing the merch of his band. But on the other, in this case, it means something more. It means that the boys, as Phil Lynott might have said, are back in town.

Because, when you’ve said and done all, and whichever different line up and version was knocking around (crikey, I’ve seen about three of them) if you’re going to do LA Guns properly, then dammit you need Guns and Lewis.

This breakneck set – cut to an hour due to technical issues – proves why. The new album (the one that saw them reunited) is reasonably well represented, “The Devil Made Me Do It” kicks off, then there’s an airing for the centrepoint of the thing, “The Flood’s The Fault Of The Rain” and arguably it’s best moment, “Speed” (completed here by Lewis donning some pretty special flying goggles).

But with the greatest respect to The Missing Peace (which is a really excellent record) no one is here for that. They’re here for filthy oldies like “…Gypsy”, “Over The Edge” and “One More Reason” – the song which, along with Vain’s “No Respect” and Love’/Hate’s “Blackout in The Red Room”, I would argue most summed up the sleaze sound.

Actually, though, its “Sex Action” that best sums up the night. As they play it, I look around the crowd. 350 people maybe, of these there’s 100 blokes who probably haven’t been laid since the track was released judging by the state of them, and a few women, who might usually be down the bingo on a Tuesday these days, but who still swoon for Lewis and the rest. You could look at it and say it was ridiculous, but that would be to miss a key point. We knew it was ridiculous in 1986, so you can bet your life we damn sure know its ridiculous now. Does that make it any less valid, or any less superbly played (and it is striking just how good Guns is on the guitar)? No, it doesn’t.

Instead, this is a band – and they really are a gang again, all five of them – that is having fun and enjoying being on the stage. They are also largely free of rock star ego. No encores. They don’t bother sodding off to come back and play “Ballad Of Jayne” they just do, and its ace. As is “Rip And Tear” the gleeful thing that they finish with – and I am certain I hear the band singing “fish and chips” in the harmonies.

This isn’t the Sunset Strip, and this isn’t The Whiskey A Go-Go, but it might have been, just for an hour. As Lewis himself said: “you’re in my good books, Bilston. We’re gonna come back soon on a Saturday night and blow the roof of.” Don’t bet against it. LA Guns are back, and they’re firing.

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