Unless you’ve spent too much time at the Occupy Wall Street protests, you know that the Axl Rose version of Guns N Roses is embarking on a North American tour this fall. While this news has some fans excited, it has others wondering when the impending tour will implode, how long it will take Axl to go on a temper tantrum rage, and whether Slash T-Shirts will be allowed into the arenas.
The first thing that caught my eye after the announcement was made that Guns N Roses was going on tour this fall was the ticket prices. I immediately went online, expecting to see some astronomical cost that would immediately cause me to disqualify myself from attending any local area concerts. This would allow me the opportunity to produce a venom filled rage about how Axl was ripping off the fans and it wasn’t even the original band members.
However, when I looked online at ticket prices, I noticed immediately how affordable they were. That caught me by surprise. Ticket prices in the NY/NJ area ranged between $37 and $112 (and that includes the immoral fees that Ticketmaster adds). I could certainly afford $40 to see Guns N Roses. Ticket prices were not going to give me an excuse for an amusing rant.
That being said, there is still plenty to wonder about when it comes to an Axl Rose led tour of Guns N Roses. The first question I had was: who is in the band? Reports from the web confirm that DJ Ashba and Bumblefoot are both playing guitar and that Tommy Stinson is still on bass. While they aren’t Slash, Izzy, and Duff, they aren’t slouches either. Bumblefoot has done some amazing work on Chinese Democracy and DJ Ashba was fantastic with Sixx AM. So while it wouldn’t be the original incarnation of Guns, it’s not a bad replacement band. The band members failed to give me a good excuse to rant and rave about how I refuse to attend this show.
Okay, so maybe the ticket prices are affordable and the band members (while not the original) are solid, but the setlist can’t be great, right? It will probably consist of some Chinese Democracy songs and a couple of overplayed classics. There’s no way that Axl and the replacements would play some deep cuts from the early catalog. Well, after researching the setlists they’ve played overseas, it appears the band is digging deep on this show. If you like the classics (Welcome To The Jungle, Mr. Brownstone, You Could Be Mine, November Rain, Paradise City) they are all there. If you like the new material (Chinese Democracy, Better, Street Of Dreams), they are covered as well. And if you like the deep cuts (Estranged, Rocket Queen) they are also being played. Throw in some surprise covers and it all adds up to a magnificent setlist. Point blank honesty – I was shocked by how inviting the set looked.
Then there’s the last little bit about when the hell will the show start? Well, Axl isn’t changing his ways there, but at least they’ve warned the fans in advance. In a message posted on GnR’s Facebook page, it read the following: “Love it Hate it Accept it Debate it – You want 8 o’clock shows go find F-R-I-E-N-D-S or hit a cinema somewhere.. or you wanna be informed go catch the 10 o’clock news.. this is Rock N’ Roll!…This is Guns N’Roses and when the time is right the stage will ignite…”
All I can say is forewarned is forearmed. Bring a book. Grab an IPOD, or plan to do PLENTY of tailgating in the parking lot. Either way, don’t bother entering the building until at least 10:00PM (and even then you may be a tad early). While late start times bug the heck out of me, being warned in advance that they are going to happen makes it a whole lot easier to deal with.
So perhaps seeing the 2011 incarnation of Guns N Roses wouldn’t be that bad. What do you think? Are you going to see GnR on tour this fall?
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