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1991.05.16 - The Ritz, New York, USA

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1991.05.16 - The Ritz, New York, USA

Post by Soulmonster on Sat May 19, 2012 5:22 am

May 16, 1991.

The Ritz.

New York, USA.

01. Pretty Tied Up
02. Bad Obsession
03. Right Next Door To Hell
04. Mr. Brownstone
05. Dust N' Bones
06. Live And Let Die
07. Paradise City
08. Civil War
09. You Could Be Mine,
10. Patience
11. Knockin' On Heaven's Door
12. Don't Cry [w/ Shannon Hoon]
13. You Ain't The First [w/ Shannon Hoon]
14. My Michelle
15. Estranged
16. Double Talkin' Jive
17. Sweet Child O' Mine
18. Welcome To The Jungle

Axl Rose (vocals), Izzy Stradlin (rhythm guitarist), Slash (lead guitarist), Duff McKagan (bass), Dizzy Reed (keyboards) and Matt Sorum (drums).

Next concert: 1991.05.24.
Previous concert: 1991.05.11
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Re: 1991.05.16 - The Ritz, New York, USA

Post by Soulmonster on Tue May 13, 2014 6:30 am

Review in New York Times, May 18, 1991:

Review/Rock; Guns 'n' Roses Back, in a Not-So-Sneak Preview
Published: May 18, 1991

The semi-secret club date, which was once a way for the Rolling Stones, Prince or Bob Dylan to relax and play for dedicated fans, now has its own routines. When Guns 'n' Roses played at the Ritz on Thursday night, in a show announced that afternoon, the anointed rock rebels of the late 1980's brought all the show-business trappings.

A radio station promotional van was parked outside the entrance; music-business people and the press occupied the balcony seats, and on stage, the singer W. Axl Rose had his lyrics spooling by on a Teleprompter. A film crew was shooting the performance, which was a dress rehearsal (complete with costume changes) for the arena tour Guns 'n' Roses starts next week.

But when the house lights went on for applause and sing-alongs, the people crammed onto the dance floor were happy to be video-clip extras. The Los Angeles-based band was back, bare-chested and sweaty, blasting out some of the best-loved riffs and shrieks of the 1980's and finally introducing some new songs.

It was a casually paced show, with long pauses between songs and a sloppy stretch before the encores; at times, Mr. Rose conferred with other band members about what song to perform next. During the 2-hour-15-minute set, Mr. Rose wore, among other things, flowered tights, bicycle shorts, a baseball cap emblazoned N.W.A. (after the rap group), a fishnet T-shirt and even a black marabou-feather jacket. The crowd, many in leather and ripped blue jeans, roared when Mr. Rose did his snake-hipped shimmy or twirled his microphone stand overhead; at one point, it came apart and the heavy base flew across the stage, narrowly missing a crew member.

Guns 'n' Roses has been agonizing over its coming release, the band's first full-length studio recording since its debut album in 1987, "Appetite for Destruction." The music combined the rowdiness of the Rolling Stones, Aerosmith and Led Zeppelin, while Mr. Rose sang about low life, sex, heroin and love; the album sold 12 million copies worldwide while the band's fights and drug problems were widely publicized, making Guns 'n' Roses rock's reigning bad boys. "G. 'n' R. Lies," primarily a compilation of archival material that was released in 1988, sold five million copies. But touring and turmoil within the band -- a new drummer, Matt Sorum (formerly of the Cult), has replaced Steven Adler -- prevented it from completing a follow-up.

From the stage, Mr. Rose announced that Guns 'n' Roses would release 30 new songs simultaneously on two separate albums. Geffen Records has the two albums, titled "Use Your Illusion" I and II, scheduled for release on July 23. "We're touring on a record that hasn't been released because when we were touring in clubs, that's how we started," the guitarist Slash said between songs. Of course, fledgling bands can't fill stadiums during the short summer concert season.

Hearing Guns 'n' Roses on stage could make fans wonder what is holding up the records. The musicians need no remedial work in the studio; Guns 'n' Roses is one of the most capable hard-rock bands now performing, with a savagely efficient rhythm section (Mr. Sorum, Duff McKagan on bass and Izzy Stradlin on rhythm guitar) and a lead guitarist, Slash, whose riffs and solos are thoroughly grounded in the blues. The band also has a gift for slow tempos; its power ballads seem inexorable rather than interminable as they build from strummed guitars to a full-band stomp.

The band's old all-guitar attack has been tempered by the addition of a keyboardist, Dizzy Reed, for the tour; he added honky-tonk or Romantic pomp as the songs required. And Mr. Rose sang in a variety of voices linked only by their deliberate harshness: a dry, nasal tone in "Mr. Brownstone," a cracked, quavery voice for Paul McCartney's "Live and Let Die" and a piercing yowl to carry the endearments of "Sweet Child o' Mine."

Along with "Live and Let Die," the band also performed a second borrowed song about death, Bob Dylan's "Knockin' on Heaven's Door." The band's own new songs are still riff-rockers -- "Bad Obsession," "Right Next Door to Hell" and "You Could Be Mine," a theme song for the coming "Terminator 2 Judgment Day" -- and slow-building anthems, like "Civil War" and "Estranged," in which Mr. Rose sang about anomie with steely calm.

The crowd greeted new songs enthusiastically, but the old ones brought out a joyous frenzy. Clearly, Guns 'n' Roses can count on its fans' loyalty as long as it pounds out riffs like the one in "Welcome to the Jungle," which closed the show by turning the club floor into a slam-dancing melee.

The band returns to the New York area on June 17 at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, L.I.
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