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Richie Sambora – Stranger in This Town

This album is fully of its time. It’s in the sound, the production, everything. But this is not a detriment, in this case – it totally works. These are fully realized songs played wonderfully, and with lots of blues (even Eric Clapton plays on Mr. Bluesman) and west coast rocker soul. And, of course, the guitar work is insanely good. The whole thing has an atmosphere to it, and I got pulled right into its orbit. Now sure, there are a couple of songs that could plainly have been Bon Jovi tracks, but there’s a lot here that must surely be solely Sambora, too.

The only weird patches on this otherwise perfect record were twofold: first, the guitar solo in Ballad Of Youth was shoved way into the background. Everything else is right up front, so that was a weird choice. And secondly is the sappy last track, The Answer. I’d have left that one off the record.

No matter. I loved this album. It was exactly what I needed to hear.

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