Before there was L.A. Guns there was Guns N' Roses. Or if you are more inclined to believe the liner notes, it's the other way around. No matter how the fable gets framed, somewhere in time (specifically Los Angeles in the mid-'80s), Hollywood rockers Axl Rose and Tracii Guns split to form their own respective groups. Hollywood Raw features the post-Axl L.A. Guns demo sessions when they were trying to make the leap from Troubadour mainstays to major-label stardom. And that's exactly what these tracks are to the core: demos in all of their unapologetic rawness and glory, which also makes the listening unbearable at points. To its credit, Hollywood Raw also brings forth a degree of honesty, an ugliness that most bands of this ilk would rather not let the public witness (it's a bit like not having their makeup and hairspray on first thing in the morning). This is most definitely for die-hard fans only. It's undoubtedly interesting as a historical document, but not much more than that. As a value-added bonus, they've also included the band's self-released four-song debut EP on a separate disc.
AllMusic Review by Rob Theakston
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2