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MY Guns N Roses concert review Chicago-11/18/02 [Archive] - DVD Talk Forum


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11-19-02, 09:15 AM
Don't let the MTV appearance fool you - these guys were tight! Excellent, excellent show. Axl's voice was "on" and the band nailed the music. What a great show, lots of fun. 14,000 people singing along to Paradise City -great experience. Here's what they played:

Welcome To The Jungle
It's So Easy
Out Ta Get Me
Mr. Brownstone
Paradise City
You're Crazy
My Michelle
Think About You
Sweet Child O' Mine
Rocket Queen


Live & Let Die
November Rain
You Could Be Mine
Knockin' on Heaven's Door

unknown ballad
unknown fast song

Other Notes
Lots of pyro with flames, fireworks explosions and a confetti cannons
Buckethead's a weird dude, but his solo included the Star Wars Theme and the Imperial March so he's OK with me
Heard several girls in the lobby afterwards complain that they didn't hear Don't Cry

11-19-02, 10:17 AM
I thought Axl's voice was pretty bad during the first half of the show, but he seemed to get stronger around November Rain. I could do without the pyro, reminded me a little too much of the Dudley Boyz / Kane. All said a pretty entertaining show, boy there were some REAL characters in the crowd.

Still don't know what to think about the whole GnR thing. On one hand the songs are great and always will be, so to hear someone, anyone perform them is great. On the other hand, it's basically just a cover band. Granted, Axl was a large part of their success, but the music made them great, not the lyrics. I'm sure Duff could put a band together and find a guy that looked/sounded like Axl, but that wouldn't make it GnR either.

11-19-02, 12:31 PM
Does anyone know if GnR ever played "Coma" live?

11-19-02, 12:36 PM
I know Coma was on the int'l version of the Live Era CDs, so they must have played it live at least once.

11-19-02, 12:36 PM
A review from the Trib:

New GNR lacks unity, but sound is still huge

By Greg Kot

When last seen on a Chicago stage more than 10 years ago, Guns N' Roses was the biggest rock band in the world. But they slinked out of town like fugitives, blowing off a second show the next night so that singer Axl Rose could outrun an arrest warrant in connection with instigating a riot at a St. Louis concert the year before.
Some fans might have considered Monday's concert at the Allstate Arena as a long-overdue make-up date, though Guns N' Roses is a much different band. Long gone are Slash, Izzy Stradlin, Duff McKagen and Matt Sorum (who had replaced original drummer Steven Adler). All that's left from the famed lineup is Rose and keyboardist Dizzy Reed.

Otherwise this was a patchwork of the semi-famous: bassist Tommy Stinson, in his plaid Replacements get-up, and guitarist Robin Finck, looking every inch the fashionably post-industrial Nine Inch Nails refugee, plus Richard Fortus (Love Spit Love), Chris Pitman (Replicants) and Brian Mantia (Primus). The most unlikely addition had to be guitarist Buckethead, who looked like he was discovered in a fast-food chain's dumpster, with his "Halloween"-style mask and headgear large enough to accommodate a family-size serving of extra-crispy chicken.

Certainly the octet couldn't be faulted for its instrumental chops; Buckethead in particular is a marvel of nimble finger-work, a fluid guitarist who took a run at everything from mutant bluegrass to intergalactic surf during his solo turn.

But the new GNR isn't yet a band so much as a committee on retainer, lacking the Gunners' unifying slouch and swagger. The original band sent the arena-rock lovin' world into a tizzy with their merger of Aerosmith's bluesy, bawdy boogie and the New York Dolls' glammed-up recklessness. They were the last gasp for a bankrupt concept: boozing, brawling, womanizing and main-lining themselves into rock-star oblivion.

It couldn't last, and it didn't. By 1993, after one landmark album ("Appetite for Destruction"), the Gunners fell apart and Rose all but disappeared, an alienated Midwestern kid who had managed to alienate everyone in his band. Under Rose's direction, the Gunners had started to embrace show-biz excess with female backing singers, horns, power ballads and high-concept videos. The once raunchy Sunset Strip interlopers had gone pro.

It was this bloated version of GNR that the reclusive Rose tried to revive Monday, long on fireworks and gaudy visuals. The sound was huge, and sometimes the dreadlocked singer's voice lacked sufficient power to cut through it. Rose sprinted from side to side on the two-tiered stage or broke into his undulating snake dance while grasping the microphone stand, and his Wicked Witch of the West shriek occasionally melted away the years. The set list was heavy on the band's standards, from the opening "Welcome to the Jungle" to the confetti-coated encore "Paradise City," with the 10-minute "November Rain" as the midset centerpiece. "Rain" remains an iconic song in the band's repertoire, Rose at the grand piano fighting for a love doomed to fail, but it now sounds like a melodramatic stab at mimicking the multi-part epics of '70s rock, ala Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven" or Elton John's "Funeral for a Friend"/"Love Lies Bleeding."

It was impossible to argue with the signature Slash riffs and solos in "Sweet Child O' Mine," expertly replicated by Buckethead and Finck. A handful of songs from the years-in-the-making comeback album, "Chinese Democracy" (tentatively set for 2003 release), revealed few new wrinkles; the only concession to the '90s was a drum loop pumping beneath one tune, otherwise Rose's head was still swimming in classic-rock grandeur.

Missing from the new mix was the punchy songwriting of the Gunners' secret weapon, Stradlin, the pithy riff-rock of "Dust N' Bones" and "Double Talkin' Jive." Slash's penchant for excessive solos was once balanced by Stradlin's concise riffs. The current band has no such give-and-take. It more resembles an efficient arena-rock machine or well-rehearsed corporation. But can the control freak who runs the show keep his act together? Rose offered only one hint as to the fragile state of his psyche:

"Psychologically, you could consider this a reunion tour," he told the audience. "Because I've managed to find enough pieces of my mind in order to be with you here tonight."

11-19-02, 01:01 PM
Originally posted by cineman
Does anyone know if GnR ever played "Coma" live? YES.

April 9, 1992, I saw them do Coma in a concert held at the same arena I saw last night's show...

What's more, I have the 1992 show (with Coma) on video :)

11-20-02, 01:50 AM
Originally posted by GuessWho

April 9, 1992, I saw them do Coma in a concert held at the same arena I saw last night's show...

What's more, I have the 1992 show (with Coma) on video :)

I have this video, TOO...

11-20-02, 09:13 AM
Originally posted by gerrythedon
I have this video, TOO... But I was there :p

11-20-02, 10:48 AM
I wanted to go and make my own decision about the new GnR but had to work instead. Here is another article from the Sun-Times.

Link (http://www.suntimes.com/output/entertainment/cst-ftr-guns20.html)

Lose your illusion

November 20, 2002


The last two weeks have seen the highly anticipated return to the Chicago stage by two artists who've been missing in action for 10 years. But where Peter Gabriel came back with a show that underscored his enduring brilliance, Axl Rose offered much less.

Rose and his almost entirely reconfigured Guns N' Roses pulled into a packed Allstate Arena on Monday night. But it's hard to say that it was worth the wait—either in terms of the wait since the band's last album and local performance, or the typically long and thoughtless delay Monday that preceded Rose's eventual appearance onstage 2œ hours after the posted start time.

There's no denying that Guns N' Roses defined mainstream rock in the late '80s, and it stands as one of the most important bands of the pre-alternative era. Yet the group's infamously mercurial lead singer (a self-important “artiste” if ever there was one) remains tethered to those times, with a new group that is best described as a passable Guns cover band; a smattering of new songs that add nothing to the legacy of tuneful, glam-leaning hard rock, and a set list that was heavy on material from “Appetite for Destruction” (1987).

Rose faced several hurdles even before he finally deigned to show himself. (And the Allstate’s 10 p.m. start was early, compared to the union-defying set times in other cities on this tour.) For one thing, even the most devoted fan had to be suspect of him calling this group Guns N' Roses.

The Who is simply not the Who without Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey. The Rolling Stones are not the Rolling Stones without Keith Richards and Mick Jagger. It is hard to justify Guns being Guns without lead guitarist Slash (or for that matter, rhythm guitarist and tunesmith Izzy Stradlin, who was always the band's secret weapon).

The purposely cartoonish new crew did its best. Psychedelic-leaning shred guitarist Buckethead (whose improvised Kentucky Fried Chicken chapeau was a poor fashion substitute for Slash's old top hat) and glammed-out industrial noisemeister Robin Finck gamely traded solos, updating the old Guns sound for nu-metal ears (except during the really classic leads like “Sweet Child O' Mine,” which they didn't dare alter).

Drummer Brian Mantia pounded away with arena-rattling aplomb, and Indiana homeboy Rose seemed to have genuinely bonded with Minneapolis-bred Tommy Stinson, though for anyone who ever loved the Replacements, the effect of seeing the punk-rock bassist covering Guns songs was akin to watching Charles Mingus jamming with ’N Sync.

But above and beyond any questions of authenticity were the hurdles of aging and nostalgia, those dreaded twin demons that plague much of rock 'n' roll.

Always a canny observer of pop trends, Rose knows that the Guns sound no longer rules rock, and a new generation of listeners likes its metal laced with hip-hop. He made a concession to this fact by having Beastie Boys DJ Mixmaster Mike play an hourlong opening set (following the wretchedly generic nu-metal band CKY) on the wheels of steel.

This was definitely not what the older Guns audience wanted. Mike was greeted with a sea of upthrust fingers through most of his admittedly boring performance, and disinterested fans spent much of the set and the hour wait that followed amusing themselves by starting fistfights or watching the Bears game in the arena lobby.

When Guns took the stage amid the expected fireworks and pyro explosions, the jersey-clad Rose darted about with athletic vigor, and he still did his awkward frat-boy shuffle dance with his usual misguided enthusiasm. But while it was better than it was during his inaugural reappearance at the MTV Video Music Awards in late August, his voice was still considerably weaker and more limited than it was during the band's heyday.

The vocals were often mixed below the guitars (never a good sign in a band led by the singer), and the dreadlocked Rose clearly benefitted from electronic augmentation at the mixing board during the ear-piercing screams on songs such as “Live and Let Die.”

The old man also relied on several giant video monitors scattered about the stage to feed him the lyrics. (Jeez, Axl, you've had nothing to do for the last 10 years. You couldn't have spent the time re-learning those “classic” lyrics to “Mr. Brownstone”? And do you really need prompting to remember “knock, knock, knockin' on heaven's door”?)

Most troublesome of all was the fact that Rose still has not learned that Guns N' Roses was always at its best when it was moving quickest and hitting hardest. The set bogged down for three or four long, soggy and self-indulgent power ballads just when it should have been building to a climax. When Axl sits down at the grand piano, you know it's time to run for a beer.

To be fair, the new millennial Guns N' Roses can't be entirely written off until Rose finally delivers the long-threatened new album “Chinese Democracy” (if indeed it ever appears). But Monday's show at the Allstate Arena didn't offer much hope for the band’s reclaiming the commercial prominence or the artistic peaks it once achieved.

Link (http://www.suntimes.com/output/entertainment/cst-ftr-guns20.html)

11-20-02, 11:11 AM
Originally posted by Flashback

The last two weeks have seen the highly anticipated return to the Chicago stage by two artists who've been missing in action for 10 years. But where Peter Gabriel came back with a show that underscored his enduring brilliance, Axl Rose offered much less.

I agree with most everything he wrote, although someone who thinks Peter Gabriel is enduringly brilliant slides down a few spots on my credibility scale.

11-20-02, 12:49 PM
I bought tickets to GNRs show in LA for my fiancee for Christmas. It sucks that it's basically just Axl Rose -- not really GnR -- But I think she'll still enjoy it.

I'm glad they sounded pretty good.

11-20-02, 03:35 PM
Originally posted by GuessWho
But I was there :p

I'm IN LOS ANGELES... could'nt make it...lol

11-20-02, 04:16 PM
Originally posted by gerrythedon
I'm IN LOS ANGELES... could'nt make it...lol I'm trying to get a DVD of it, I'm winning on eBay right now :D

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