Chinese Democracy is Coming on Nov 23… and it’s not the one you are thinking of

Axl Rose and “Guns N’ Roses” are allegedly releasing their sixth studio album, Chinese Democracy on Sunday, November 23, 2008.

I say “allegedly” because this album has had so many release dates that I was fairly certain that China would have a fairly elected democratic government, before Chinese Democracy hit store shelves. 

Seriously, this album was originally supposed to be released back in 1993! I am told that it is the single most expensive album ever recorded, with a reported price tag of $13 million back in 2005… who knows what the final cost was.

Regardless of whether you want to buy Chinese Democracy, you can still get your free Dr. Pepper since Axl will have successfully completed their “Dr. Pepper Challenge” by releasing this album in 2008 (If it actually happens. I won’t believe the album is out until it is in my hands).

I will be reviewing the album when it comes out, but I want to put down a few things first, before I listen to it.

First, I think Guns N’ Roses isn’t just about Axl Rose. It was Axl & Slash. It was the passionate yet bad-ass ballads of Axl, and Slash’s killer, heavy blues rock guitar.

Axl can try to replace Slash with heavy metal shredders like Buckethead, but Guns N’ Roses was never about highly technical “betchya can’t play this” instrumentals. They were about gritty, yet soulful rock.

I am going to do my best to listen to the album with an open mind. I might enjoy the metal shred-work that I am expecting to hear on many of the albums solos. Even if I like it as an album, it has a lot to live up to bearing the name “Guns N’ Roses.”

It will take a lot to convince me that this isn’t just an exercise in vanity for an aging rocker with a gigantic ego, no discipline, and a bottomless pit of money. Axl, I hope you know what you’re doing.

3 thoughts on “Chinese Democracy is Coming on Nov 23… and it’s not the one you are thinking of

  1. As someone who was there “back in the day….” Allow me to add to what David said..

    I was there, in the summer of 1987, at a horse racing track in Northeast PA, when this new band “Guns ‘N Roses” – all big hair and leather (I think Axl had stopped with the eyeliner and rouge by then) – opened for Aerosmith. They played for 20 minutes, or until the crowd was pushing the stage too much and Axl said they were done (this was after the Monsters of Rock show where a couple of people were trampled to death).

    I was there in 1990, watching GNR play a couple of great shows just before Christmas at the old Spectrum in Philadelphia. At this point, Matt Sorum had replaced Steven, but the line-up was intact.

    I was there in the summer of 1992, just before Use Your Illusion came out, again at the Spectrum where it was so loud when the band took the stage that I still am not quite sure what the opening song was (Mr. Browstone, I think).

    And I was there, one cold winter night in Philadelphia in 2002, when Axl decided not to show for the concert, ultimately leading to a riot and causing the cancellation of the rest of the tour. Hey, that was always a possiblity with a GNR show.

    But…the Best Rock Band In The World lost me at some point. No matter if Chinese Democracy is good, bad or indifferent, it’s ain’t the late ’80s/early ’90s and this ain’t Guns ‘N Roses. Just like Velvet Revolver wasn’t GNR (and they had more GNR members than GNR does!), this is Axl and other musicians.

    RIP GNR.

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