Entertainment Weekly - Rating: B
Love/Hate: Jizzy Pearl (lead vocals); Skid (bass, background vocals); Jon E. Love (guitars, sitars, vocals); Joey Gold (vocals).
On the surface, the music of Love/Hate's debut may seem no different than most any late-'80s L.A. pop-metal, but the band's performance exudes a fury and belligerence that posers such as Poison or Warrant could never even grasp; actually, they would turn on their heels and run away screaming from it. The band literally "plays on 11," from the very first crunching power chord of the title track to the last cymbal crash of the frenzied "Hell Ca., Pop. 4." In between, they alternate the sheer power of "Rock Queen," "One More Round," and "Straightjacket" with the haunting yet beautiful melodies of "Mary Jane" and "She's an Angel." The strangely message-oriented "Why Do You Think They Call It Dope?" does stick out like a sore thumb -- no thanks to its funk-metal bassline and overtly commercial mix. But with delirious performances, such as guitarist Jon E. Love's on the massive "Tumbleweed," there is little here to criticize. Blackout in the Red Room is a very impressive album. ~ Eduardo Rivadavia