Released 1999 (Cleopatra/Deadline)
01. Kill Machine
02. Torture Games
04. People Will Die
05. Dreams Of Nothing
06. All Eyes Are Watching
07. Leaving Now
08. Unconditional Love
09. Will Jesus Save?
10. I Still Love You
11. My House
12. Live Intro (L.A. Guns live 1997)
13. Sex Action (L.A. Guns live 1997)
14. Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love (L.A. Guns live 1997)
Riley Baxter – vocals
Tracii Guns – guitars
Kent Holmes – bass
Chuck Burns – drums
Ralph Saenz – vocals (12, 13 & 14)
Produced by Denis Degher and Tracii Guns.
During one of Tracii Guns‘ infamous breaks from L.A. Guns, Killing Machine was unleashed upon the world. First impressions bring The L.A. Guns‘ American Hardcore to mind, yet a little more palatable. The first track, “Kill Machine”, sets the tone for this semi-dark, semi-thrash release – “No feelings, no emotions, no beauty, no nothing,” no shit! When “Shitkicker” starts cranking I dare you not to get up and turn your living room into a mosh pit, smashing whatever and whomever is foolish enough to not get out of your way.
There’s not a whole lot of surprise with this release, all tracks are pretty straight forward, chugga chugga chugga with the exception of the lone attempt at a ballad, “I Still Love You”. “Unconditional Love” is another fist-pumping, hair swirling song as is “People Will Die”. The overall feel of this disc is that of a garage band jamming for friends but with a much more polished sound.
The highlights of this release to me are the two gems at the end of the disc. Ralph Saenz was captured on tape giving a solid performance on one of L.A. Guns‘ classics, “Sex Action’, complete with audience participation and all, before Tracii breaks off into Van Halen‘s “Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love”, a song Ralph was more than familiar with from his stint in a VH cover band. You could tell the crowd loved it, being treated to an early Van Halen sound not heard in years. If you close your eyes and listen real close, you can almost hear the 70s ending and the Regan era beginning.
Overall this disc is pretty good, nothing special, but good. Definitely a solid choice to keep in the car for the long road trips where you need an extra shot of juice to keep the hammer down.
Reviewed by Brutus for Sleaze Roxx, October 2006.