Tag Archives: Matt Sorum

Dear Mr. Rose,


Dear Mr. Rose,

Thanks for pissing on the remaining shreds of hope that I had that there could ever be an Appetite-era lineup reunion of the infamous Guns N’ Roses.  I wasn’t hoping for a world tour or anything.  Just a 1-time set at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame would have been gracious and exciting.

I watched as the band burned bright, then fell apart.  Illusions I & II are the sound of a band imploding, and Spaghetti Incident is the sound of a band phoning it in.  Chinese Democracy is the unsettling ranting of a lunatic.

I have read the biographies, and I have made a public plea for a reunionAppetite for Destruction floored me when I was a teenager.  The guitars were blaring and dancing around each other perfectly.  The drums made my heat beat faster.  The bass managed to weave it all together.  The vocals made me want to scream and yell.  Lies was absolutely brilliant.  The raw aggression of the earlier “live” tracks were the Guns, & the stripped down yet edgy acoustic tracks were the Roses.

You could have been a grown-ass-man, and set aside your ego, your demons, and whatever else is plaguing you.  You could have probably even gotten away with not showing up for rehearsal, sound check or even acknowledging the existence of the other guys off stage.  Everyone knows you’re supposedly some sort of “temperamental genius” by now, and would have let it slide.  I mean, you really never got much more than a monetary slap on the wrist for inciting multiple riots.  If you can get away with that, you can pretty much get away with anything.

It seems that you fear reuniting with the old lineup would invalidate the existence of the current lineup of Guns N’ Roses.  The only thing that invalidates the current lineup is one W. Axl Rose.  You have made it unequivocally clear that the founding members of the band who wrote the songs that you’re surely playing on tour & developed the sound that you try so hard to get away from are nothing but hired guns (pun intended) to your apparently infallible and virtually unreachable artistic vision.  Why should we put any stock in the revolving door of members that has been present since the departure of core members Duff & Slash?  Perhaps Izzy was the most intelligent of the bunch, getting out shortly after Adler was ousted.  Gilby Clarke sure was never given status as a full band member.  Even Buckethead was called out for his apparent inabilities to record or tour when he left the band.  It’s always someone else’s fault, isn’t it?  Does Dizzy Reed know any other words than “Yes, Axl”?  (Surely even you have to notice how terrible the piano sounds on live versions of “Patience” and “Paradise City“.)

By all accounts it’s Axl who was always late to the stage, Axl who left everyone hanging in Chicago, Axl & some guy that wasn’t even in the band that included a hidden Charles Manson cover on an album despite the rest of the band’s wishes, Axl who called in Paul Tobias without asking anyone else, Axl who demanded legal ownership of the band name at a time when it was impossible for the others to refuse (all aiming to keep the fans happy), Axl who put out no albums while former bands mates cranked out multiple albums from multiple projects, and Axl who consistently points out the shortcomings of his peers and former friends through some self-created veil of paranoia while never taking the time to analyze or even admit to his own self-destructive actions.

Thank you for destroying my favorite band.

I guess I do have to thank you for making sure that the last memory of my favorite lineup won’t be some half-hearted attempt at recapturing some inspirational spark or any multitude of possibly disappointing outcomes.

Former Fan,
-ERiC AiXeLsyD

Appetite for Destruction

Appetite for Destruction (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Ink N’ Pages – The Guns N’ Roses Autobiographies


Slash

Slash

So, it’s no secret that I’m a Guns N’ Roses fan.  Well, a fan of everything up until The Spaghetti Incident.  I like both of Duff‘s solo albums, all of Slash’s Snakepit & solo material, Velvet Revolver, I even have Hollywood Rose.  I still need to pick up a Loaded album, but I do have the Neurotic Outsiders.  This doesn’t dig into bootlegs of live and demo stuff… of which I have a plethora.

Appetite for Destruction generally tops my “all time favorites” album lists.  I go back to it time and time again, & get lost in between Slash & Izzy’s guitars spiraling around each other.

Of course, when the autobiographies started coming out, I had to read them.  I got Slash‘s book, then Duff’s then Steven’s.  Slash was a rock n’ roll hero to me when I was in Jr. High & high school, but out of the three books… I think Duff comes off the best  and most entertaining.  The writing is very fluid.  I found it easy to imagine Duff in the early days.  The stories are blunt & sincere, and he ties it all back to where it has led him & where he is now in life.  Duff seems like a great guy to hang out with.

It's So Easy: and Other Lies

It's So Easy: and Other Lies

Slash’s book is an easy read, but it jumps around quite a bit.  His recollection of events is really questionable.  It doesn’t necessarily feel like Slash is remembering things correctly, or even the one telling the story.  I might have to give it a re-read after finishing the other two books.

Steven’s book, like Steven, is a mess.  I can’t help but feel pity for the guy, mostly because he professes to not have a “poor me” attitude, but every single action the guy takes screams “oh poor me”.  This guy just can’t get it right, but he still seems like a likeable guy.

It comes across in all of them that they had fun times in the early days, with a vibe that can never be repeated.  Sadly, all these guys seem to have a habit of burning bridges… yet posses a decent history of patching things up.  I mean, Slash & Duff have never really stopped working together.  Duff has been on-stage with Axl’s band recently.  They both patched it up with Weiland recently.  Duff, Slash, & Izzy have jammed with Adler’s Appetite.

My Appetite for Destruction: Sex, and Drugs, and Guns N' Roses

My Appetite for Destruction: Sex, and Drugs, and Guns N' Roses

One thing is clear from all of these books… Axl is an absolute wild man, and these guys love & fear him.  I really hope Axl & Izzy churn out books someday.  Maybe somehow all of the events can get plotted out & reconstructed correctly.

Maybe they’ll even get together for the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame ceremony.

I’d love to check out some of the other GN’R biographies (like Reckless Road), but if the guys in the band can’t even get it right… then what hope does an outsider have?

♧♠♡♦♢♥♤♣

Guns N’ Roses – Rock & Roll Hall of Fame?


Cover of "Appetite for Destruction"

Do you know where you aaaaaaarrre?

Guns N’ Roses was & has been one of my (many according to the wife) all-time favorite bands for quite some time.  I was the target audience when this stuff was being played on top 40 radio.  They stood out among all the hair metal that was going on because they were a little more raw.

The production on Appetite for Destruction wasn’t glossy by any means.  The guitars hit you right away.  I still say Slash & Izzy have this amazing guitar interplay that no one else can match.  Duff has a style playing bass where you know it’s him, and his sound complimented everything else that was going on perfectly.  They had punk sensibility, rock riffs, they seemed like a meaner Aerosmith.  Apparently they weren’t able to keep egos in check or an endless array of drugs out.  Perhaps it’s better that the original lineup blew up as the Illusions albums were being recorded.  Then we wouldn’t have crap like Metallica’s Load to blame on them.  The blame for Chinese Democracy can rest solely on Axl.

I’m sparked to write about Guns N’ Roses because I see that they’re finally eligible and nominated for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  While I realize that the rock and roll hall of fame arguably has been, is, and will continue to be a sham for a small group of critics to fawn all over themselves…  The fact exists that it’s there, and it happens.  I enjoy the all-star jams.  I dug the Blondie appearance a few years back, and the tribute to Black Sabbath.  The non-appearance of Van Halen was a ridiculous disappointment.

I would love to see Slash, Duff, Izzy, Axl, & Steven Adler take the stage together before one of them dies.  Axl has made it pretty clear that he’ll never work with Slash again, and seems to be under some illusion that it was only his voice, personality, & songwriting that made the band what it was.  (Wasn’t the quote something like “Slash is a cancer”…?)  While Axl’s volatile nature clearly helped vault them to super-stardom, it would have been nothing without blistering guitar solos spewing forth from a chain-smoking, top hat-wearing, Les Paul-playing Cousin Itt… woven together by Izzy & Duff, with the attempt of holding things down by Steven.

I’m hoping the planets align, Axl takes some happy medicine,  and they all take the stage to rock out… even if it’s just a one-off and Axl goes back to the roving band of hooligans that is today’s (sad sad) GN’R.  I really wish Axl would just continue to write, record & tour as AXL… instead of pissing on the name & reputation of the band.  I wish Velvet Revolver would come in & play some songs with Miles Kennedy at the helm, and then go on to find a rock producer & record a new album.

Will Slash & Axl share the stage for an all-star jam?  Will they all be no-shows?  Will any incarnation of the band show up?  Will someone show up & play terrible covers?

Only time will tell.