With harmonica player/singer Mark Wenner, bassist Jan Zukowski, and drummer/singer Pete Ragusa now well into their third decade together, the Nighthawks are a veteran blue-collar band that gets the job done, and Pain & Paradise is one of their better studio efforts. Guitar chores are now handled by relative newcomer Pete Kanaras, who replaced Danny Morris. The Nighthawks' reach never exceeds their grasp, and this album displays their excellent grasp of the Muddy Waters/Little Walter-style Chicago blues and bar-band rock & roll that lie at the core of their sound. They kick butt enough that you know you've been kicked, but not so much that it hurts, and they're even confident enough to ease up every now and then.
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AllMusic Review by Steve Hoffman