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Lita Ford - 'Living Like A Runaway' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/original/99/33/d2/2453_LitaFordLivingLikeARunaway_1341597107.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     July 06, 2012    
 
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Welcome back Lita with what is a simply stunning album.

I for one was delighted when Lita Ford decided to make a return to the music scene back in 2008 having retired to a remote island in the Bahamas in the mid 90’s to raise a family with husband (and ex Nitro frontman) Jim Gillette. Lita successfully managed to break free of the teenage jailbait image of her first band, The Runaways, to duke it out with the big boys in the male dominated hair metal scene of the 80’s/early 90’s scoring a string of hits including ‘Kiss Me Deadly’, ‘Close My Eyes Forever’, ‘What Do You Think About Love’ and ‘Shot Of Poison’ as well as a Platinum selling album (1988’s ‘Lita’).

However, her ‘comeback’ album, 2009’s ‘Wicked Wonderland’ that she made with Gillette, left me scratching my head a bit. Sure it was an ambitious modern rock record with some of the heaviest material that Lita had ever produced but to me it was let down by some dodgy lyrical content that read more like Lita N’ Jim’s sex manual! Lita has since divorced Gillette and returns with what is really her first true solo album since ‘Black’ in 1995.

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For ‘Living Like A Runaway’ Lita has teamed up with guitarist/producer Gary Hoey and lyricist Michael Dan Ehming who have helped her re-discover her mojo as together they’ve created something truly special that both entertains and inspires in equal measure. The songs on this record don’t have the hi-viz pop sheen of ‘Kiss Me Deadly’ or ‘Shot Of Poison’ nor do the hooks and melodies spring out and grab you. Instead Ford and Hoey have gone back to basics with a rootsier guitar, bass and drum driven approach with only a liberal use of keyboards here and there as well as a few contemporary touches such as the industrial vibe of the wonderful ‘A Song To Slit Your Wrists By’ (a co-write with Nikki Sixx). Apart from the strident opener ‘Branded’ most of the songs have a mid-paced groove laden feel where the hooks are more subtly hidden that slowly reveal themselves with repeated listens. As a result I think that cuts like the bass driven swagger of ‘Hate’; the down n’ dirty grooves of ‘The Mask’ and ‘Relentless’ or the beautifully crafted, uplifting guitar melodies of ‘Asylum’ and the title track itself will have real staying power in the months and even years to come.

Lyrically this is Lita’s most personal album to date - as she tries to make sense of her life, her battles to make it in the male dominated record industry and unburden her emotions at the breakdown of her marriage - that are both poignant and inspirational. Her ballad to her two young sons ‘Mother’ show a new found maturity in her songwriting, with well chosen lyrics that only a mother could compose, creating a breathtaking heart-rending song that would equally apply to any children who are caught in the middle of a relationship breakdown.

Welcome back Lita with what is a simply stunning album! 

Alister Strachan

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