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1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt)

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1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt) Empty 1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt)

Post by Blackstar on Wed Apr 04, 2018 8:58 pm

1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt) Ur7fDfEy_o
1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt) EY8YDDd5_o

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TRANSCRIPTION:
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Guns N’ Roses reborn
 
A sneak preview of their new albums and world tour
 
By Greg Kot
Rock music critic
 
In 1989, “Appetite for De­struction” wasn’t just the title of Guns Ν’ Roses’ No. 1 album. It was turn­ing into a self-fulfilling prophe­cy.
 
While the band opened a se­ries of outdoor shows that year in Los Angeles for the Rolling Stones, singer W. Axl Rose chastised his fellow band members for abusing drugs and announced on stage that if they didn’t clean up their act, the band would break up.
 
On Friday night, when the Los Angeles bad boys take the stage for the first of two shows at Alpine Valley Music The­atre to kick off a world tour, they’ll be wearing a few scars from that year of private and public battles with drugs, drink, fame and the media.
 
And they’ll also be introduc­ing a new band member who helped them pull out of it, drummer Matt Sorum, for­merly of British hard-rockers the Cult.
 
“From what people tell me, I’ve helped the band get back on its feet, and that makes me feel good,” he says. “I’m just glad the band is back out there.”
 
Although journalists re­questing interviews with the band were sent a consent form that would give the group final approval on every word writ­ten, The Tribune was granted an exclusive interview without any such restrictions.
 
The contract “was for people we didn’t want to talk to,” Sorum explains. “It’s been blown all out of proportion, because there’s plenty of stuff the band wants to talk about openly.”
 
While Sorum chatted, Rose, guitarists Slash and Izzy Stradlin and bassist Duff McKagan were putting the finishing touches on 36 songs—about 2 1/2 hours of music—that will be released by Geffen Records on two compact discs this summer as “Use Your Illusion I” and “Use Your Illusion II.”
 
A mid-July release has been tentatively set for the project, which was originally supposed to have been recorded in Chi­cago in 1989.
 
That summer, the band set up their equipment in the va­cant Top Note Theatre above Cabaret Metro on Clark Street. After selling 12 million copies of their first two major- label records, “Appetite for Destruction” and “GN’R Lies,” both of which landed in the Top 5 simultaneously ear­lier that year, the band thought that escaping the “dis­tractions” of Los Angeles would jump-start a new album.
 
The Chicago sessions went nowhere, however, and the band returned to Los Angeles in disarray. But before leaving the Midwest, Slash and McKagen [sic] took in a Cult show at Alpine Valley Music The­atre in East Troy, Wis., and were impressed by Sorum, a former Los Angeles session musician.
 
“That’s when I first met the guys and they were in kind of a state,” Sorum recalls. “It [fame] got thrown on them in a major way. They came from out of the clubs to selling mil­lions of records and they didn’t have any time to adjust.
 
“They didn’t approach me again until the very last show I did with the Cult in April last year, so I had a sneaking sus­picion something was going on.
 
“The next day I got a call from Slash at my house. Origi­nally I was just going to go down and do the album. Then about two weeks into rehear­sal, I went up to Slash’s house for a little barbecue and he asked me to join the band.”
 
Sorum replaced Steven Adler, who had been with the band since its inception in Los Angeles in 1985, when all five band members lived together in a shabby apartment, writing songs and scraping up Tuesday night gigs.
 
But while the other band members battled to control their drinking and drug habits, Adler’s condition deteriorated to the point where he was hav­ing difficulty playing. He re­portedly continues to live in Los Angeles.
 
“It was hard for them to bring someone new into the band, because they had known Steven for so long and he was a really good person; he just had his problems,” Sorum says. “And they were having a hard time finding someone that they could really open up to and hang out with the way they had with Steven.”
Sorum also had his doubts. “I heard a lot of horror sto­ries, and I had mixed opinions about joining this band. Final­ly I decided that this is a once in-a-lifetime opportunity and that if I didn’t take it now, I’d probably kill myself later.”
 
Sorum’s professionalism helped the band refocus on its music.
 
“As soon as I got into the band, it was like clockwork,” he says. “We rehearsed for a month every day for four or five hours. There was none of this calling in sick because you were up too late the night be­fore partying. If you were, you had to show up anyway.
 
“Duff told me one day, ‘At first, I didn’t really want to like playing with you, but now I really dig it’ ”
 
The band worked up 25 songs and recorded them in about a month.
 
“More songs just kept com­ing out,” the drummer says. “Some of the better ones on the album were actually writ­ten in the studio. Some were done on the first or second take, real spur-of-the-moment stuff. It ended up being 36 songs and we went, ‘God, how are we gonna put all this on an album?’ ”
 
Eventually, it was decided to put out all the songs on two simultaneously released CDs, the equivalent of a quadruple album.
 
“About one-third of the stuff we updated, because it’s been around with those guys from the beginnings of the band and they wanted to get it out now.”
 
That includes the projected first single, “Don’t Cry,” a bal­lad that hints at the wider emotional and musical terri­tory covered on the new album.
 
“It’s a love song, a pretty emotional tune for Axl to sing,” Sorum says.
 
He says the tunes run from the low-key introspection of “November Rain” to what he describes as a Metallica-like metal cut, “Coma.” Rose plays piano on several songs, and several longer tracks re­flect the influence of Led Zep­pelin’s “Stairway to Heaven” and Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody.” The album also includes “some really heavy-duty punk stuff, middle- ground rock and some weird acoustic things in which I use brushes or just a tambourine”.
 
“ ‘Appetite’ was a party album,” he says. “This new stuff goes deeper than that.”
 
Sorum says the album doesn’t have any overt politi­cal messages. “It’s more about relationships, stuff that’s hap­pened to the band over the last few years.”
 
But the drummer was evasive about whether the band directly addresses critics of the song “One in a Mil­lion,” a “GN’R Lies” track that got negative press because of its racist and homophobic lyrics.
 
“There might be something on the album that ticks some­one off, but who knows? I hope not,” Sorum says. “Basi­cally Axl speaks his mind, he tells it how it is and how he feels. He’s not gonna be singing any ‘Baby, baby, I love you’ stuff.’'
 
The band recently tried out the material at two surprise club dates in California. The first show, May 9 at the 2,350-seat Warfield Theater in San Francisco, was a ragged affair, with Rose reading lyrics off a teleprompter, according to San Francisco Chronicle critic Joel Selvin.
 
“They’re a fraud,” he says. “It was among the worst rock shows I’ve ever seen. Most of it was a mulch of painfully loud sound.”
 
But Los Angeles Times critic Robert Hilburn praised the band’s performance two nights later at the 2,600-seat Pantages Theater in Hollywood.
 
“We’ve got so much new material, we’re trying to figure out what songs we want to play live,” Sorum says. “Basi­cally Axl just calls out tunes; we haven’t run by a set list so far and we probably won’t ever.
 
“It’s not boom-boom-boom, a big light show with the same moves every night. A lot of bands, they might as well put the album on and jump around. We like to open up on a tune and make it into something new.”
 
While the band is pushing its music, it’s trying to temper other aspects of its “act.”
 
“There’s not a lot of sub­stance abuse happening, but I’m not gonna turn around and say we're all clean and we don’t want any booze back- stage,” Sorum says. “We like to party a bit, but it’s all in the right kind of order now. Partying doesn’t come first. We play the gig and then we might have fun, but we don’t let the fun have us.”
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1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt) Empty Re: 1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt)

Post by Soulmonster on Fri Feb 21, 2020 7:50 am

Same article published a few days later:

1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt) Janesv12
1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt) Janesv10
1991.05.19 - Chicago Tribune - Guns N' Roses Reborn (Matt) Janesv11

Transcript:

Guns N' Roses feeds appetite for 'the right kind of order'
LA bad boys open at Alpine Valley

Knight-Ridder

In 1989, "Appetite for Destruction" wasn't just the title of Guns N' Roses' No. 1 album. It was turning into a self-fulfilling prophecy.

While the band opened a series of outdoor shows that year in Los Angeles for the Rolling Stones, singer W Axl Rose chastised his fellow band members for abusing drugs and announced on stage that If they didn't clean up their act, the band would break up.

Tonight, when the Los Angeles bad boys take the stage for the first of two shows at Alpine Valley Music Theatre In East Troy to kick off a world tour. they'll be wearing a few scars from that year of private and public battles with drugs, drink, fame and the media.

Lawn seats --at $28.75 a pop - are still available for the show Saturday night.

And they'll also introduce a new band member who helped them pull out of it, drummer Matt Sorum, formerly of British hard-rockers the Cult.

"From what people tell me, I've helped the band get back on its feet, and that makes me feel good," he says. "I'm Just glad the band Is back out there."

While Sorum chatted, Rose, guitarists Slash and Izzy Stradlin and bassist Duff McKagan were put-ting the finishing touches on 36 songs-about 21/2 hours of music - that will be released by Geffen Records on two compact discs this summer as "Use Your Illusion I" and "Use Your Illusion II."

A mid-July release has been set tentatively for the project, which was originally supposed to have been recorded in Chicago in 1989.

That summer, the band set up their equipment in the vacant Top Note Theatre above Cabaret Metro on Clark Street. After selling 12 million copies of their first two major-label records, "Appetite for Destruction" and "GN'R Lies," both of which landed in the Top 5 simultaneously earlier that year, the band thought that escaping the "distractions" of Los Angeles would jump-start a new album.

The Chicago sessions went nowhere, however, and the band returned to Los Angeles in disarray. But before leaving the Midwest, Slash and McKagan took in a Cult show at Alpine Valley Music Theatre and were impressed by Sorum, a former Los Angeles -session musician.

"That's when I first met the guys, and they were in kind of a state," Sorum recalls "It (fame) got thrown on them In a major way. They came from out of the clubs to selling millions of records and they didn't have any time to adjust...

"They didn't approach me again until the very last show I did with the Cult in April last year, so I had a sneaking suspicion something was going on.

"The next day I got a call from Slash at my house. Originally I was just going to go down and do the album. Then about two weeks into rehearsal. 1 went up to Slash's house for a little barbecue, and he asked me to join the band "

Sorum replaced Steven Adler. who had been with the band since its inception in Los Angeles In 1985, when all five band members lived together in a shabby apartment, writing songs and scraping up Tuesday night gigs.

But while the other band members battled to control their drinking and drug habits, Adler's condition deteriorated to the point where he was having difficulty playing. He reportedly continues to live in Los Angeles.

"It was hard for them to bring someone new into the band, because they had known Steven for so long, and he was a really good person. He Just had his problems." Sorum says "And they were having a hard time finding someone that they could really open up to and hang out with the way they had with Steven."

Sorum also had his doubts. "I heard a lot of horror stones. and I had mixed opinions about joining this band Finally I decided that this is a once-in-a-life-time opportunity, and that if I didn't take it now. I'd probably kill myself later."

Sorum's professionalism helped the band refocus on its music.

"As soon as I got into the band, it was like clock-work," he says. "We rehearsed for a month every day for four or live hours There was none of this calling in sick because you were up too late the night before partying If you were, you had to show up anyway.

"Duff told me one day, "At first, I didn't really want to like playing with you, but now I really dig it.'

The band worked up 25 songs and recorded them in about a month.

"More songs just kept coming out," the drummer says. "Some of the better ones on the album were actually written in the studio. Some were done on the first or second take, real spur-of-the-moment stuff. It ended up being 36 songs and we went, 'God. how are we gonna put all this on an album?' "

Eventually. it was decided to put out all the songs on two simultaneously released CDs, the equivalent of a quadruple album.

"About one-third of the stuff we updated, because it's been around with those guys from the beginnings of the band and they wanted to get it out now."

That includes the projected first single. "Don't Cry," a ballad that hints at the wider emotional and musical territory covered on the new album.

"It's a love song, a pretty emotional tune for Axl to sing," Sorum says. He says the tunes run from the low-key introspection of "November Rain" to what he describes as a Metallica-like metal cut, "Coma." Rose plays piano on several songs, and several longer tracks reflect the influence of Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven" and Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody."

The album also includes "some really heavy-duty punk stuff, middle-ground rock and some weird acoustic things in which I use brushes or just a tambourine.

"'Appetite' was a party album," he says. "This new stuff goes deeper than that."

Sorum says the album doesn't have any overt political messages. "It's more about relationships, stuff that's happened to the band over the last few years."

But the drummer was evasive about whether the band directly addresses critics of the song "One in a Million," a "GN'R Lies" track that got negative press because of its racist and homophobic lyrics.

"There might be something on the album that ticks someone off, but who knows? I hope not." Sorum says. "Basically Axl speaks his mind, he tells it how it is and how he feels. He's not gonna be singing any 'Baby, baby. I love you' stuff."

The band recently tried out the material at two surprise club dates in California. The first show, May 9 at the 2,350-seat Warfield Theater in San Francisco, was a ragged affair, with Rose reading lyrics off a teleprompter, according to San Francisco Chronicle critic Joel Selvin.

"They're a fraud," he says. "It was among the worst rock shows I've ever seen. Most of it was a mulch of painfully loud sound."

But Los Angeles Times critic Robert. Hilburn praised the band's performance two nights later at the 2.800-seat Pantages Theater in Hollywood.

"We've got so much new material, were trying to figure out what songs we want to play live," Sorum says. "Basically Axl Just calls out tunes; we haven't run by a set list so far, and we probably won't ever.

"It's not boom-boom-boom, a big light show with the same moves every night. A lot of bands, they might as well put the album on and jump around. We like to open up on a tune and make it into something new."

While the band is pushing its music, it's trying to temper other aspects of its "act."

There's not a lot of substance abuse happening, but I'm not gonna turn around and say we're all clean and we don't want any booze backstage." Sorum says. "We like to party a bit, but it's all in the right kind of order now. Partying doesn't come first. We play the gig and then we might have fun, but we don't let the fun have us."
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