There’s a special kind of magic that happens when musicians loved for their heavy rock sound take things down a notch, unplug and present their songs in a whole new way. For those who dig that unplugged sound, a must-hear is the brand new Prophets of Addiction release “Nothing but the Truth,” due for release Oct. 26 on HighVolMusic. Band founder and frontman Lesli Sanders has really outdone himself on this recording, his genuine talent for lyrics and melody showcased in each and every song.
To celebrate the release of “Nothing but the Truth,” Stonegate Pizza and Rum Bar will host a Halloween party and live show on Saturday, Oct. 27 featuring Prophets of Addiction going on around 10 p.m., The Jet City Fix, Drunk as Usual, and the return of Ravages of Time. Door opens at 8 p.m., music starts at 9 p.m. Come dressed for the costume contest and win prizes – 5412 South Tacoma Way. Entry is $10.
There is some electric guitar and keyboards on this album, but incorporated into the overall sound such that it all blends and flows beautifully. It’s the acoustic instruments that stand out most, and this is how Sanders and guitarist Glenn “G.G.” Gilbert perform the songs live. Prophets fans will be familiar with most of the songs on “Nothing but the Truth,” as certain songs have been included on past POA albums, and there are three new ones to enjoy – “Talkin’,” “American Dream” and “Hollywood,” which Sanders wrote many years ago in an electric style but never released. Videos for “American Dream” and “Hollywood” can be viewed on YouTube.
The “Nothing but the Truth” track listing in order:
- “American Dream”
- “Altar of Altercation” and “Babylon Boulevard” (from 2014’s “Babylon Boulevard”)
- “Last of the Words” and “Spare the Bullets” (from 2016’s “Reunite the Sinners”)
- “Atmosphere” (from Sanders’ 2017 solo album “My Eyes are Greener on the Other Side”)
- “Heart of Mine” (from “Reunite the Sinners”)
- “Return the Smile” (from Sanders’ 2014 solo album “The Haunting Truth of My Self Portrait”)
Joining Sanders – lead vocals, backing vocals, electric and acoustic guitars, piano, keyboards and percussion – are Gilbert on lead guitar, acoustic and electric guitar and backing vocals; Phil Soussan on backing vocals on “Talkin’,” Sean Curkendall on piano for “American Dream,” “Last of the Words” and “Return the Smile,” and Lee Taylor adding additional backing vocals on “American Dream.”
Gilbert grew up in Houston playing many different styles, focusing heavily on UK glam and New York punk with some favorite bands being Hanoi Rocks and Dogs d’Amour.
“I met Lesli when my band opened for The Prophets of Addiction in Houston in September 2015,” Gilbert said. “In 2016, we went out for three months together for 72 shows. It was great to finally be in a band where obscure glam mentions were completely understood and no one had any reservations about wearing makeup.”
After that tour, Sanders and Gilbert started putting together an “unplugged” act, which is a style that Gilbert has always been into playing.
“When we started putting the record together, the Dogs d’Amour album ‘Graveyard of Empty Bottles’ was a definite reference point. I’m really proud of the record’s songs and guitar work. Of course, it is fun to rock but there is something thrilling about playing acoustic with none of your usual safety nets.”
Every tune on “Nothing but the Truth” stands on its own and draws listeners in with intimacy and unadorned realness…nothing but the truth. There is a recurring theme on this album, one of looking back on life and all the raw emotions that entails – joy and sorrow, satisfaction and regret, happiness and anger – but there’s never a loss of hope or settled-in darkness. This makes for a wonderful reflection on Sanders’ life in music that has its roots in an era gone now but never forgotten. Back in the day, Sanders practically lived on the Hollywood Sunset Strip on stage and in the crowds at places like Whisky a Go Go, The Rainbow and The Roxy with legendary bands like LA Guns, Poison, Warrant, Pretty Boy Floyd…all the greats. When the drugs, sex and rock-n-roll got a little too heavy after a while, Sanders returned to the Tacoma area to chill out and redirect his path. The music never left his soul, and soon he was back writing and playing again.
Since then, Sanders pretty much has never stopped, writing new music and playing hundreds of gigs across the country solo and with POA. He is the real deal for sure, and someone to look up to since he lived to tell when, tragically, so many musicians of his era either didn’t make it out alive or faded away from the music scene. Sanders never did – and for that we can be truly grateful.
There’s a lot to look forward to with POA – a new rock record coming soon on HighVolMusic and maybe more. One can only hope. Pre-order you copy of “Nothing but the Truth” now at https://hvmmerch.store/products/prophets-of-addiction-nothing-but-the-truth.