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APPETITE FOR DISCUSSION
Welcome to Appetite for Discussion -- a Guns N' Roses fan forum!

Please feel free to look around the forum as a guest, I hope you will find something of interest. If you want to join the discussions or contribute in other ways then you need to become a member. We especially welcome anyone who wants to share documents for our archive or would be interested in translating or transcribing articles and interviews.

Registering is free and easy.

Cheers!
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

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Post by Soulmonster Sat Jun 09, 2018 8:21 pm


2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Index12

June 9, 2018
Download Festival, Donnington Park, England
Setlist:
01. It's So Easy
02. Mr. Brownstone
03. Chinese Democracy
04. Welcome to the Jungle
05. Double Talkin' Jive
06. Better
07. Estranged
08. Live and Let Die
09. Slither
10. Rocket Queen
11. You Could Be Mine
12. Attitude
13. This I Love
14. Shadow of Your Love
15. Civil War
Band introductions.
Slash guitar solo segueing into Theme from Godfather
16. Sweet Child O' Mine
17. Coma
18. Wichita Lineman
Jam - Wish You Were Here
19. November Rain (with Layla intro)
20. Black Hole Sun
21. Knockin' On Heaven's Door
22. Nightrain
ENCORE
23. Patience
24. The Seeker
25. Paradise City

Date:
June 9, 2018.

Venue:
Download Festival.

Location:
Donnington Park, England.

Line-up:
Axl Rose: Vocals and piano
Slash: Lead and rhythm guitar, and backing vocals
Richard Fortus: Rhythm and lead guitar, and backing vocals
Duff Mckagan: Bass and backing vocals
Dizzy Reed: Piano and backing vocals
Frank Ferrer: Drums
Melissa Reese: Keyboard and backing vocals

Poster:
(Artist: Johnny Crap/Jonathan Bergeron)



____________________________________________________________________
2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Index210

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Post by Blackstar Sat Jun 20, 2020 12:38 am

Official video:

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Post by Blackstar Wed Jan 03, 2024 7:49 pm

Pre-show report in the Sunday Mirror, June 9, 2018:
-------------------------------------------------------------

Guns N' Roses rider includes posh pad with porcelain toilet among jaw-dropping list of needs at Download Festival

The band issued a few jaw-dropping demands on their backstage rider at Download Festival

By Halina Watts
Sunday Showbiz Editor


Music stars nowadays are a far cry from the hotel-room-trashing, cars-in-the-pool hellraisers of old.

So I’m glad to see Guns N’ Roses still know how to rock ’n’ roll. And they’ve issued a few jaw-dropping demands on their backstage rider at Download Festival – including a porcelain toilet.

I’m told Axl Rose, Slash, Duff McKagan and the rest of the band flew in for their THREE HOUR headlining slot by helicopter, before being whisked off to a compound the size of a football pitch.

Access was denied to anyone who isn’t part of the tour group.

Inside they had home comforts from America flown over, including their favourite Hershey bars and extra cheesy pizzas. Anyone who’s ever been to a festival is familiar with the horror of the portaloo, so it’s understandable the band demanded special porcelain bogs to ease their... comfort.

I’m told super silky toilet paper was also requested for the lads. Well, all those dodgy festival burgers can take their toll...

A source reveals: “When organisers of Download got Guns N’ Roses’ requests they were gobsmacked. It is the biggest rider the festival has ever seen, they have never seen anything like it. But they made sure it was exactly as they wanted.”

Some of my favourite star demands include Jay Z having a personal cigar maker on his pay roll – and Mariah Carey asking for 20 white kittens and 100 white doves.

Rockers taking to the stage tonight at Donington Park near Derby include Ozzy Osbourne and Marilyn Manson. It might get loud...

https://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/celebrity-news/guns-n-roses-demand-posh-12673549
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Post by Blackstar Wed Jan 03, 2024 7:55 pm

Spin, June 12, 2018:
---------------------------

Axl Rose Deserves a Normal Toilet

Written by Andy Cush

The British music press has its knickers in a twist over a supposedly leaked tour rider for Guns N’ Roses’ performance at Donington Park’s Download Festival 2018. Usually, when news outlets report on artists’ requests for accommodations on the road, it’s because of the rock-star excess contained within: Mariah Carey’s 100 white doves, Van Halen’s bowl of M&M’s with all the brown ones picked out.

The tone of the GN’R story—as first reported by the Mirror and picked up by NME—is no different. Both breathlessly relayed the band’s backstage menu, as wretchedly decadent as any fifth-grade sleepover party. “They had home comforts from America flown over, including their favourite Hershey bars and extra cheesy pizzas,” the Mirror article reads in part. But that’s nothing compared to the vessel into which they planned to digest and deposit all that food: a toilet of solid porcelain, a demand that made it into both outlets’ headlines. The Mirror‘s called such an indulgence “jaw-dropping.”

But porcelain, of course, is just what regular toilets are made of. It’s unclear whether these guys are being willfully obtuse, or if they really think porcelain is fancy, but it’s not. It isn’t platinum, or gold, or even marble. It’s toilet material.

The band probably asked for a porcelain toilet because they were playing an outdoor festival and didn’t want to get stuck using port-a-potties all day. That might strike you as outrageous, but to me it sounds like a reasonable request for a band of men in their 50s who have generated hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue on this tour. Say what you will bout Axl Rose, but he deserves a normal toilet. Let the man shit in peace.

https://www.spin.com/2018/06/guns-n-roses-porcelain-toilet/
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Post by Blackstar Wed Jan 03, 2024 8:03 pm

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Post by Blackstar Wed Jan 03, 2024 8:03 pm

Official photos by Kat Benzova














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Post by Blackstar Wed Jan 03, 2024 8:04 pm

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Post by Blackstar Wed Jan 03, 2024 8:07 pm

Melissa on Instagram:

There is no better feeling than peeling off ur suuuuper binding sweaty ass pants after playing a crazy show!!!! Feel like I’m oversharing 🙆‍� here, but i had to snap a pic bc this is #bts reality and i feel freeeeee and #srrrrr #duper #gucci #rn #🤪. (This was the very #comfy and #breathable #bodysuit under the sweaty pants 👖) #downloadfestival #UK y’all are next level #lit .... #wow #fuck .... We had a blassssssst. #tour #gnr #gunsnroses #music #festival #download #love #thankyou #gratitude #happiness #stars #aftershow #bodyacceptance #puppyNelliemakeup 😩😩😩 #MissUSoMuchPuppyNellie

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bj01pfElYq9/
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Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 6:31 pm

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Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 6:35 pm

Review in The Guardian, June 11, 2018:
------------------------------------------------

Review
Download festival review – Guns N' Roses dominate metal's biggest party
4/5 stars


Donington Park, Castle Donington
Marilyn Manson is a chilled-out entertainer, Avenged Sevenfold comfortably top the bill and Ozzy Osbourne feels the love during the metal marathon


By Dom Lawson

With everything from cacophonous extreme metal to none-more-vanilla pop-punk on offer, this year’s Download bill caters for more tastes than most – and for the second year on the trot, it doesn’t collapse into a quagmire.

Denmark’s Volbeat conquer Friday with the ease of future champions, attracting a colossal and word-perfect crowd to the main stage. The first time Avenged Sevenfold headlined here in 2014 they seemed overwhelmed by their newfound status, but they have relaxed into their bill-topping boots and deliver a set full of grand anthems, explosive pyro and eccentric detours.

Saturday is all about Powerflo’s thuggish rap-metal, Von Hertzen Brothers’ sun-scorched prog rock and, most amusingly, veteran thrashcore pillocks Lawnmower Deth’s joyous idiocy. Meanwhile, anyone who witnessed raging electrocore militants the Fever 333’s blistering UK debut will still be talking about it next summer.

But if three hours of Guns N’ Roses sounds like a bit much, well, yes, it is. And yet, there are stunning moments throughout their set, including several songs from Appetite for Destruction, joyously overblown ballads Estranged and Civil War, an unexpectedly lovely cover of Wichita Lineman and a ferocious version of deep, deep cut Coma that gleefully baffles a large portion of the crowd. There are a lot of patience-testing guitar solos too, of course, plus a version of Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door that lasts so long we can only assume Axl is knocking on the wrong door. But in terms of value for money, the LA legends more than deliver. [...]

https://www.theguardian.com/music/2018/jun/11/download-festival-review-guns-n-roses-marilyn-manson-avenged-sevenfold-ozzy-osbourne

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Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 6:39 pm

Review in The Telegraph, June 10, 2018:
-------------------------------------------------

Guns N' Roses, Download Festival - review: a set dispensed with feral purpose showing the band are back to their best
4/5 stars


By Andrew Perry

When Guns N’ Roses last played at Castle Donington’s race track 30 years ago, two fans died in the crush to see them. Back then, they were fifth from top bill on the main stage, but in the months since they’d turned into one of the world’s biggest rock band.

Much has changed at the festival, formerly known as Monsters of Rock and since rebranded as Download: sturdy crash barriers divide up the crowd to prevent such human tragedy happening again. There’s also the best disability provision of any weekender in the UK, with vast viewing platforms for wheelchair users, and “performance interpreters” for the hard of hearing, who enthusiastically air-guitar all day.

This year, Download has even “gone eco”, providing maps and schedules on a free app rather than on paper. There are also stalls selling prosecco, and decent coffee. Whatever next: diet metal?

The mood on site on the Saturday was of electric anticipation for Guns N’ Roses. Would they be late? Would they cause a riot? In the years since their megalomaniacal frontman Axl Rose fired the rest of the band, in 1996, he has done much damage to the brand, routinely taking to the stage three hours behind schedule with a batch of substandard hirelings.

Eventually, career pragmatism and imponderable lucre lured Rose back together with iconic top-hatted guitarist Slash, as well as founding bassist Duff McKagan, for a reunion that’s already the fourth highest grossing rock tour ever ($480million and counting), and has been near-universally garlanded.

Amid deafening applause, this line-up tellingly took to the stage one minute early, and soon ripped through It’s So Easy and Mr Brownstone from 1987’s Appetite for Destruction. Initially, either age or infirmity seemed to have shorn Rose’s voice of its familiar upper registers, with the squealing ably covered by Slash, whose string-bending virtuosity was a spine-tingling wonder to behold.

Guns N’ Roses’s reputation essentially rests on that one era-classic album, and any rumours that they may be striking back with new music this summer were scotched, with the announcement of an Appetite deluxe edition subtitled Locked N’ Loaded, due later this month.

As they were listed to perform for a whopping three and a half hours, you wondered, indeed feared, how they might fill the time. Initially, there was no flabby soloing, as songs from Appetite (including a joyous Welcome to the Jungle) as well as selections from 1991’s Use Your Illusion twin-set (a swingeing You Could Be Mine) and even Axl’s white elephant from 2008, Chinese Democracy (the Queen-ish Better), were dispensed with feral purpose.

A pattern soon emerged whereby the mighty GN’R doubled as a covers act – quite possibly the finest on Planet Earth, but the selections grew increasingly surreal as the hours went by. Initially these ranged from The Misfits’ apt Attitude (sung by McKagan), through to Slash’s endless widdly widdly reading of Nino Rota’s Love Theme From The Godfather.

Often the versions were nods to absent friends, including the late Chris Cornell from Soundgarden (Black Hole Sun), and then, of all people, Glenn Campbell – a straight country take on Wichita Lineman, with Rose holding back from his now restored scream – in context, a heart-stopping curveball.

Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here, rendered instrumentally with Slash and second guitarist Richard Fortus trading solos for eons, rammed the memorial pathos home a little forcefully, but after such indulgences, all would be forgiven, thanks to Sweet Child O’ Mine, a singalong doubtless heard on the streets of nearby Nottingham and Derby.

Then came November Rain, Rose’s fingers weighed down on the piano keys by a Liberace-esque dazzle of jewelry – one diamond-encrusted ring featured an emerald the size of an ice cube.

Set-closing romps through Nightrain, and Paradise City (cue fireworks), confirmed that Guns N’ Roses are back on peak form – better even than when they first hit the stadium circuit, drunk and on hard drugs, in ’91. Now, they just need to write another world-beating album.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/music/concerts/gun-n-roses-download-festival-review-set-dispensed-feral-purpose/
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Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 6:51 pm

Review in The Times, June 12, 2018:
--------------------------------------------

Pop review: Download Festival at Donington Park, Leicestershire

By Stephen Dalton

★★★★☆

About 100,000 people converged on the hallowed turf of Donington Park over the weekend for three days of long hair, loud guitars and preposterous hats. Most of the last were worn by the Guns N’ Roses singer Axl Rose, whose marathon headline performance on Saturday night featured more costume changes than in Beyoncé’s entire career.

Recently reconciled and reunited after 20 years of bitter feuding, the band — featuring original members Rose, Slash and Duff McKagan — arrived on stage bang on time for their blockbuster three-hour show. Once they were punks, now they are punctual. And who can blame them? After all, these former lords of misrule are well on their way to breaking box-office records with their archly titled Not In This Lifetime . . . comeback tour, which has generated close to half a billion dollars and counting. Nodding to the British setting, Rose donned a Union Jack top hat at one point and introduced Slash as “your fellow Englishman”, a reference to the guitarist’s unlikely roots in nearby Stoke-on-Trent.

Did these reconstituted Los Angeles hard-rock legends deserve their sprawling, Springsteen-sized stage time? Not quite. Padded out with cover versions, this baroque-and-roll banquet of a show felt rather like binge-watching a box set of the band’s career. That said, it was rich in great moments. At 56, Rose has a voice that is nowadays less grating shriek than grainy croak. The singer also showed his softer side with tender versions of November Rain, Jimmy Webb’s Wichita Lineman, Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here and more. Becalmed bad boys with a flair for syrupy ballads, Guns N’ Roses are more than ready for a Las Vegas residency.
[...]

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/pop-review-download-festival-at-donington-park-leicestershire-6pskg729d
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Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 8:44 pm

Review in Loudersound, June 10, 2018:
------------------------------------------------

What happened when Guns N' Roses headlined Download

Three and a half hours of classics and covers, as Guns N' Roses finally make Donington home

1. This weekend has been about one band, whatever Avenged Sevenfold and Ozzy Osbourne might think. The atmosphere has been giddy with anticipation since the gates opened on Friday, fans have been attempting to remove the Guns N' Roses posters that dot the site (you could decorate the wall of a substantial room), and a vast, era-defining crowd has assembled to watch them play.

2. They go onstage early. For all the tired jokes about Axl's timekeeping, this tour has apparently run like clockwork, and this time they hit the stage before Plini (headlining the Doogtooth stage up the hill) have even finished their set.

3. It's So Easy. Mr. Brownstone. Chinese Democracy. Welcome To The Jungle. That's a strong opening.

4. They're a great covers band. Whether it's to keep themselves amused or just to fill the minutes (three hours is a long set), covers are an important part of the show. Slither shows what might have been, Wichita Lineman gives Axl the chance to croon, and The Who's The Seeker (introduced by Axl as "an old English folk song") churns with vicious intent. Then there's Wish You Were Here, The Misfits' Attitude, the piano section of Derek And The Dominoes' Layla, Live And Let Die, Black Hole Sun, Knockin' On Heavens Door.

5. They could do this for years. When people wonder who's going to replace The Rolling Stones, Guns N' Roses are the answer. This line-up could easily tour every 5-10 years, charging big stadium prices for big stadium shows. They're got the catalogue, they can pull the crowds.

6. One criticism: the set meandered from time to time. Intros were extended, solos allowed to run and run, and at times you could be forgiven for thinking you were watching Gov't Mule rather than Guns N' Roses. They could tighten things up and knock 30 minutes from the length of the set with reducing the number of songs they play.

7. Axl comes across as a nice bloke, talking of love and introducing Slash as "your fellow Englishman." And the moment he inserts “Do you know where the fuck you are? You’re in Donington, baby!” into Welcome To The Jungle is glorious.

8. Despite watching three full hours of Duff, Axl and Slash standing side by side, it's still surreal to see them together again. Belting out a blinding rendition of Paradise City to close on, with one spectacular firework ending, this is something truly special. Few bands can command a crowd this size (dwarfing that of Avenged Sevenfold yesterday) and keep everyone bouncing and singing along for 180 minutes. They said it would never happen, but don't be surprised if you see the LA boys again soon.

https://www.loudersound.com/features/what-happened-when-guns-n-roses-headlined-download
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Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 8:53 pm

Review in Nottingham Post, June 10, 2018:
---------------------------------------------------------

Download 2018 Saturday review - Guns N' Roses, Lawnmower Deth and Parkway Drive

By Tom Hamshere

[...]
Saturday’s headliners scarcely need an introduction, despite the backbone of the band not having played together since 1993. Although Guns N’ Roses graced the stage at Download previously in 2006, this appearance saw the first Donington show in over 25 years shared by enigmatic frontman Axl Rose, legendary guitarist Slash and the band’s original bassist Duff McKagan since the trio reunited for the Not in this Lifetime tour in 2016.

With the number of Guns N' Roses T-Shirts and fans clad in Slash and Axl costumes it had been clear to see all day who much of the crowd were here to see, and the band didn’t let their loyal fan-base down.

Covering every era of the band’s history, from necessities such as ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ and ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ through their more recent hits of ‘Chinese Democracy’ and a cover of 'Slither' from Slash's other project Velvet Revolver, the band kept the crowd transfixed throughout the marathon three hour set.

With thousands of those present having packed their air guitars all took the opportunity to play along, including during the 10 minute guitar solo by the maestro Slash himself, further cementing his legacy as rock n' roll royalty for all those in attendance.

Not to be outshone Axl Rose demonstrated why Guns N' Roses have continued unabated over the years, despite the splits with band-mates.

With his stage presence and sheer vocal ability plain for all to see, the driving force behind one of the most successful bands in rock n' roll history continued his unparalleled run on superb form at Donington. Whenever Slash may leave silence, Axl is there to fill the void - the duo showcasing precisely why they originally shot to fame over 30 years ago with this stellar headline set.

Photo credits: Joseph Raynor/ Nottingham Post







https://www.nottinghampost.com/whats-on/music-nightlife/download-2018-saturday-review-guns-1659344
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Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:01 pm

Review in Shropshire Star, June 10, 2018:
---------------------------------------------------

Guns N’ Roses, Black Stone Cherry, and Thunder, Download Festival - review and pictures

Guns N’ Roses’ Axl, Slash and Duff brought their hotly-anticipated headline set to Download last night - and, packed with hits, fireworks and outstanding guitar solos aplenty, it was One In A Million.

By Kirsten Rawlins

Blessed with glorious, sunny weather, classic and southern rock fans were treated to a stellar afternoon filled with superb performances on the main stage from London icons Thunder and Kentucky stars Black Stone Cherry, before G N’ R launched into their phenomenal three-hour set. [...]

But there was one band the tens of thousands in the arena had turned out to see yesterday - from the aged couples, to the groups of teenage girls, to young families with children proudly donning the group’s merchandise - Guns N’ Roses.

And I’ve never seen such a humongous crowd gather for one act before; it was truly an overwhelming experience.

I never believed I would get the chance to see Axl Rose, Slash and Duff McKagan play on stage together - but, here they were, and the excitement all around was electric.

And they most certainly did not disappoint.

For many acts - regardless of their talents - a three-hour set could have easily become tiresome; but not with Guns N’ Roses. I couldn’t look away for a second.

Their magnificent set was filled with hit after blinding hit, pyrotechnics and costume changes aplenty from iconic frontman Axl.

Kicking off their show with 1987 number It’s So Easy, Axl busted out his trademark moves from the get-go; holding his mic stand in the air, swaying from side to side, and spinning on the spot with the mic stand across his body.

For the younger people in the crowd - certainly me, whose dream has been to see Axl play live since the age of 14 - this was like a dream come true.

Duff, now aged 54, looked great too, donning jaw-length blond hair, a black leather waistcoat and sunglasses. He’s certainly still the heartthrob he ever was.

But star of the show was almost certainly Staffordshire-born guitar legend Slash, whose solos throughout the set were nothing short of jaw-dropping.

The show was simply hit after hit, with a few wonderful covers thrown in for good measure; many of them seemingly understated tributes to lost stars.

Among the fan favourites which came thick and fast were Mr Brownstone, Welcome To The Jungle, Live and Let Die, Rocket Queen, Civil War and, of course, Sweet Child O’ Mine.

A gorgeous instrumental version of Pink Floyd’s Wish You were also featured, as well as excellent renditions of Soundgarden’s Black Hole Sun and Velvet Revolver’s Slither.

My personal favourite of the show was a beautiful, spine-tingling performance of what is arguably one of Guns N’ Roses’ biggest hits November Rain, which saw Axl perform on piano, Slash give stunning solos on guitar, and a digital backdrop make it appear rain and lightning were on the stage as the crowd silently looked on; when they weren’t singing along, that is.

In one of his many costume changes, Axl donned a beige cowboy hat and a black jacket with beige fringes as he and the band played a tremendous rendition of Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door, which also saw the gargantuan crowd fill in the chorus at Axl’s request.

Songs such as Patience, Nightrain and a cover of The Who’s The Seeker followed, before the iconic act ended their magnificent set with a tremendous performance of Paradise City - part of the video for which was shot at the Donington festival back in 1988.

As this was their final number, the band pulled out all the stops, with Slash playing the guitar behind his head, massive muticoloured fireworks shooting into the air, confetti raining down on the crowd and Axl running from side to side of the huge stage.

An incredible evening for Guns N’ Roses fans, and an experience So Fine, no fan will forget it any time soon.

https://www.shropshirestar.com/entertainment/music/2018/06/10/guns-n-roses-black-stone-cherry-and-thunder-download-festival---review-and-pictures/
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Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:08 pm

Review in NME, June 10, 2018:
(Note: the reviewer, Mark Beaumont, is the same one who wrote a scathing review for GN'R's performance at Glastonbury in 2023)
---------------------------------------

Sublime, meet ridiculous: Guns N’ Roses’ Download headline set reviewed

Guns N' Roses headlined the second day at Download 2018, with dramatically mixed - and needlessly lengthy - results.

By Mark Beaumont

Either AC/DC sent Axl Rose to a punctuality boot-camp or Slash was always Guns N’ Roses’ stickler for timekeeping. As anyone who stuck out the hour’s wait past stage time for their 2010 Reading set, the Axl-plus-blokes GN’R became famous for apparently needing to finish the latest surprise drop season of Kimmy Schmidt before going onstage. Not so tonight’s Semi-Authentic GN’R Experience, now including Slash and Duff McKagan and only missing Izzy Stradlin and Steven Adler for a full ‘Appetite For Destruction’-era comeback (a space, rumourmongers suggest, worth watching). This revitalised incarnation arrive at Download a full one minute early. So confident is Axl Rose of a punctual finish that he’s apparently ordered a lockdown on traffic leaving the site after 10.45pm to ensure himself a swift exit.

After ten minutes of visuals of a GN’R tank destroying cartoon zombies, they arrive in spectacularly ragged fashion, blasting out ‘It’s So Easy’ with monstrous intent. Axl, resplendent in trademark hat, chains and arse-cape, struts around the stage looking like Van Morrison, sounding like Tom Waits (keyboardist Melissa Reese helps out with his shriller warblings) and shaking hips that don’t lie, but you wish they would a bit. While Slash lets loose frenetic solos on ‘Mr Brownstone’, Axl stomps around like band gaffer, conjuring voodoo from the elemental blues chunder. As ridiculous as it all looks, there’s real power in the first forty minutes: ‘Welcome To The Jungle’ is fresh, fruity and swathed in visuals of a cityscape of neon screens, ‘Double Talkin’ Jive’ is all ominous flamenco throb rock and even a few cuts from 2008’s much maligned ‘Chinese Democracy’ pack a powerful smokehouse punch.

An eye-watering opening. Trouble is, GN’R are scheduled to play for three and a half hours. Now, very few acts can sustain this sort of quality and energy over three and a half hours. Springsteen can do it, but he has the unfair advantage of having written all those Bruce Springsteen songs. Guns N’ Roses have written – let’s be generous – about forty minutes of truly classic material. Bung in some solid album tracks (bombastic protest tune ‘Civil War’ and a touching ‘Patience’) and fan rarities (a cracking punk roar through ‘Shadow Of Your Love’ from their pre-Guns days as Hollywood Rose) and you’ve got a set-in-stone hour, hour-fifteen tops.

But GN’R crave the stature of Springsteen, so they pad out an entire third of their slot with covers. Some they virtually own anyway – no-one’s begrudging them a fiery ‘Live And Let Die’ or a pumped-up ‘Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door’. Some they pay faithful tribute to: Duff gives The Misfits’ ‘Attitude’ a devoted roughing up and their sit-down take on ‘Wichita Lineman’ is as close to sublime as they get tonight. But by cramming in The Who’s ‘The Seeker’, Soundgarden’s ‘Black Hole Sun’ and a bizarre segment where Slash solos through an instrumental version of Pink Floyd’s ‘Wish You Were Here’ before Axl joins them on grand piano – with a tiny motorbike as a stool – to do the boring bit at the end of ‘Layla’, they merely drag the pace of the set to a quicksand crawl.

Then, Slash’s solos. Impressive, nay virtuosic, when sparingly deployed – heaven knows his gold-weaving riffs rescue ‘This I Love’ from being mauled to death by Axl’s godawful, tone-deaf mewling. But they’re pointless padding the rest of the time. One lengthy boogie-woogie bit we think might be called ‘Timekiller’ finds Slash proving himself the Jools Holland of LA whiskey rock, randomly dropping in bits of ‘Johnny B. Goode’ and the theme from The Godfather. When it suddenly drops into the riff from ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’, a thousand Portaloo doors are kicked off from the inside.

Because in those sporadic moments that Guns N’ Roses fire on all brutal cylinders, they’re frankly unbeatable. ‘You Could Be Mine’, ‘Nightrain’, a sumptuous ‘November Rain’ and a show-stopping ‘Paradise City’ are high-water marks of hard rock. It’s a shame all the padding only serves to lessen their stature.



https://www.nme.com/blogs/festivals-blog/sublime-meet-ridiculous-guns-n-roses-download-headline-set-reviewed-2336427
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:12 pm

Review in Summer Festival Guide, June 11, 2018:
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Guns ’N’ Roses at DOWNLOAD 2018: Reviewed!

by Anna Hyams

Day two of Download and arguably the most anticipated revival in rock history topping the bill tonight. Yes yes, we’ve all seen some other iteration of Guns’N’Roses… the one where Axl turned up an hour late, got bottled and slipped over… the one where everyone hated Chinese Democracy… the one where Slash just came and did his own thing and everyone completely loved it and uh, Velvet Revolver. But this is it. As close as we’re ever gonna get to a feud-less, most-members, sort-of-real G’n’f’n’R. For those of us born too late to have worn snakeskin and chains in the heyday, when leather was acceptable for every item of clothing, it’s a chance to jump into a bit of history and live the 80’s Sunset strip for a couple of hours.

In an extraordinary turn of events (which I am led to believe is mainly due to extremely fierce contract rules) the band hit the stage BANG ON TIME. It’s so incredibly unlikely and unheard of, it appears to take the crowd by surprise and a frantic legging-it-back from portaloos and food stalls ensues as the first notes of ‘It’s So Easy’ ring out.

Emerging in jeans that are more rip than denim and the inevitable plaid shirt tied around his waist, Axl’s unmistakable nasal tones signal the start of something special. Massive runway steps around the stage promise great views for even those at the back of the main stage arena, which is helpful considering this is probably the most packed it has ever been here at Donington.

Blasting through ‘Mr. Brownstone’ with hilarious backing vocals by… everyone, we’re so happy that even ‘Chinese Democracy’ itself doesn’t upset us. This is undeniably what we came here for, I mean even if Axl isn’t rocking a kilt and wellington boots, Slash looks precisely the same as he ever did (have we ever seen his actual head before?), Duff is still rocking a Prince logo on his bass, visuals of the band logo are plastered over all available screens and they sound downright incredible.

A crowd-wide Guns-and-Roses chant arises as the epic intro for ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ begins, and of course Axl milks the “you know where you are?” part. I just wish, just a little bit, that he’d have customised it for “you’re in Donington baby!” but oh well, he’s donned a different leather jacket and a hat for this so I guess that’s, interesting.

Classic Wings cover ‘Live and Let Die’ is spectacular, but honestly they kinda ruined Velvet Revolver’s ‘Slither’. It’s just not made for Axl’s rasp. ‘Rocket Queen’ in the blazing sunshine is the stuff rock and roll dreams are made of, and Axl has swapped into a fetching white leather jacket with a Crocodile Dundee-esque hat. I’m not sure I totally understand the outfit swaps to be honest, are they just all his favourites? Like a kid taking too many soft-toys to bed? They don’t seem to bear relevance to the set list, I mean if he’d come back on stage dressed as a rocket, or for that matter a queen, I’d be considerably more impressed.

Now I won’t lie, there’s a bit of a lull here in the middle. It’s a 3 hour set which seems to have been set up to include Appetizer, Siesta, Dessert, as far as planning goes. There are some absolute highlights of course – Terminator track ‘You Could Be Mine’ with a host of tron-esque graphcs is amazing and obviously any time Slash is rocking a solo you just shut up and enjoy. The Godfather theme tune ‘Speak Softly Love’ isn’t exactly ripe for the sing-along, but it is pretty spectacular.

Now clearly ‘Sweet Child O Mine’ is going to be well received no matter what, but Axl-more-changes-than-RuPaul-Rose goes wild, with er, a red bandana and tan hat combo. It’s a dream to hear live and the entire crowd is air-guitaring along with Slash, as it should be. A beautifully soulful cover of ‘Witchita Lineman’ has the younger contingent scratching their heads a bit, and Pink Floyd’s ‘Wish You Were Here’ is top notch too, but it’s now dawning on us that at least half of this 3 hour behemoth of a set isn’t actually going to be Guns n Roses songs. Go figure.

‘November Rain’ sees a raft of on stage pyro simulating rain due to the unusually dry conditions this year, which we are all super thankful for by the way, and a giant black grand piano is wheeled out, with a teeny weeny motorbike stool for Axl to sit on. It’s more than a little bit comical. Sorry. Then again I’m sure he cares not a jot, seeing as we’re treated to some up-close shots of his hands tickling the ivories, and one of them is adorned by an obscenely huge rectangular sapphire ring that looks like it could knuckle-dust you into another dimension. Slash is now up on the top gangway wailing for all he’s worth, and the skies are turning pink and blue above us, it’s so perfect I want to puke. As if that wasn’t enough, we’re treated to (yes, another cover…) Soundgarden’s ‘Black Hole Sun’ with an intro suspiciously familiar to Westworld fans in the crowd, which honestly makes me wary that Axl has actually been replaced by a host. It’s the only explanation for his turning up on time.

Snapping back to the big guns we’re treated to ‘Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door’ with Axl in a fringed jacket, and then the absolute classic ‘Night Train’ before an extremely brief pause for the encore. The signature whistle signals the intro for ‘Patience’ and Axl quips “…we’re going to play an English folk tune” before launching into a cover of The Who’s ‘The Seeker’ whilst wearing a Union Jack emblazoned hat. Finishing up with a final change into a studded leather jacket we get the big one, ‘Paradise City’. It’s everything it should be, loud, large and classic. Fireworks top off what was an incredible, if slightly lengthier than it needed to be, show. There’s no denying Guns’n’Roses were meant for Download Festival, it’s been a long time coming.

https://www.summerfestivalguide.co.uk/reviews/2018/06/11/gunsnroses-at-download-2018-reviewed/
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:29 pm

Review in Contact Music, June 13, 2018:
------------------------------------------------

Download Festival 2018 Live Review

By Adam Holden

After years of melancholic weather, Download Festival finally got five days of the stunning weather it deserved, as over 100,000 fans descended on the UK's home of rock n roll and the likes of Guns N Roses, Ozzy Osbourne and Avenged Sevenfold left everyone raising their hand horns.

Held at Donington Race Track, the previous home to Monsters of Rock festival, it was overhauled and refreshed as Download Festival after a brief stint as Ozzfest during the late 90s. Though whatever the name, the venue has become a holy site to rock and metal fans, a site where fans would annually flock too much like a pilgrimage.

With the vicissitudes of rock n roll over the last few decades, and the capricious tides of metal since the nascent of Monsters of Rock, all the way through to Download, the festival is now more eclectic than ever.

With legends like Ozzy, Guns N Roses and Marilyn Manson returning to the bill, there are new facets to the line-up, including the likes of DragonForce and especially Baby Metal, showing the curators are open to fresh ideas, as well as the WWE NXT and Air Guitar stage.

However, despite the diversity in guitar music, it will be pretty much impossible to upstage the headline acts at Download, especially for 2018.

After completing 120 shows on their latest world tour 'Not In This Lifetime', Guns n Roses bought the exact same 3 hour set to Download - and, oh, what a set.

Due on stage at 7:20pm would usually be ridiculously premature for a band notoriously known for being late, but no late arrivals at Download. They were prompt and on time and went straight into the classics, opening with 'It's So Easy' and 'Mr Brownstone'. To loyal and hardcore fans, three hours of Guns N Roses is easily comprehensible, to others, they may wonder how they can fill a show.

Though with songs like 'November Rain', 'Welcome to the Jungle', 'Knockin on Heaven's Door' and 'Civil War' being extended with sublime guitar solos from Slash, three hours flew by - with the only issue being bathroom breaks and the beer running empty in the behemoth crowd.

With Axel Rose's voice still exquisite, and Duff McKagan joining Slash in a 28-song set including tributes to Chris Cornell's Soundgarden, performing 'Black Hole Sun', it really was a complete set top to bottom. Finishing the 'scheduled show' with 'Night Train', they ended with an extended sing-a-long of 'Paradise City'. [...]

https://www.contactmusic.com/download-festival/music/download-festival-2018-live-review
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:32 pm

Review in uDiscoverMusic, June 9, 2018:
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Review: Download Festival 2018

Scores of metalheads, punks and everyone in between have once again descended upon Donington Park for Download Festival, UK’s premier rock and metal event.

Now in its 16th year, the line-up is better than ever. With Ozzy Osbourne, Guns N’ Roses and Avenged Sevenfold headlining along with performances by Marilyn Manson, Bad Religion, Rise Against, Bullet For My Valentine and more.

With up to 60,000 people camping out at this famous three-day festival, we’ve braved the crowds to report on this year’s most exciting performers at Download Festival. [...]

Guns N’ Roses
The anticipation throughout the day is palpable, with the build-up to Guns N’ Roses’ headlining set at Download Festival. A crowd that seems to stretch further than the eye can see, is showing patience in the anticipation of GNR’s arrival. As soon as the band takes the stage, they come blistering out of the gates with ‘It’s So Easy’ and going straight into ‘Mr. Brownstone’. Seeing the enormous crowd of people bouncing with excitement is a sight to behold. Slash gets everyone moving with ‘Chinese Democracy’ before teasing an intro to ‘Welcome To The Jungle’, while Axl asks the Donington crowd, “Do You know where you are”? The sound for a festival headliner tonight is utterly spectacular in the sun-drenched twilight. ‘Better’, ‘Estranged’ and ‘Live And Let Die’ calm the pace down before the band delivers ‘Slither’ on the crowd.

As soon as Duff McKagan begins teasing the riff during a band jam, it’s evident that ‘Rocket Queen’ is about to come and the crowd breaks loose. ‘You Could Be Mine’ is like a sledgehammer to the head, as it should be. With Axl intro to Mr Duff McKagen, we get a tip of the hat to Johnny Thunders’ ‘You Can’t Put Your Arms Around A Memory’ blending into a Misfits cover ‘Attitude’.

‘This I Love’ is then preceded by a very punk rock and instantly infectious ‘Shadow Of Your Love’, off the forthcoming Appetite For Destruction reissue coming at the end of this month. The band then launches into an epic performance of ‘Civil War’ followed by Slash’s guitar solo running into ‘Speak Softly Love’.

Even after hitting the three-hour mark on their set, there were no signs of the crowd dissipating. There’s nothing quite like seeing a sea of 100,000 people, swinging, swaying and bouncing along to Slash unleashing the opening to ‘Sweet Child o’ Mine’. It was also a night of resplendent covers, including the first appearance of their cover of Glen Campbell’s ‘Wichita Lineman’ on this leg of European dates, followed by a soulful version of Pink Floyd’s ‘Wish You Were Here’ with Slash and Richard Fortus looking as though they are sitting on God’s perch as the clouds roll effortlessly by.

Then the rain comes; metaphorically and emotionally as Axl carries the band into ‘November Rain’ via ‘Layla’. You can hear a teardrop in the crowd as Axl (sitting atop his Harley bike piano seat) along with the band, give quite a stunning performance.

The band also paid homepage to the much missed Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell, with ‘Black Hole Sun’ and you can tell the moment is not lost on the crowd. Slash intros ‘Only Woman Bleed’ before going into an anthemic ‘Knocking On Heaven’s Door’ with a swelling chorus of 100,000 voices backing him up.

Axl then sounds the foghorn for a relentless ‘Nightrain’ to end quite an amazing set. Or is it? Soon enough he comes out whistling ‘Patience’ which is telecasted across the massive screens throughout the grounds to quite spectacular effect. He then introduces a great English Folk song, ‘The Seeker’ by The Who before going out, guns blazing on the set closer, ‘Paradise City’ as sprays of confetti and exploding fireworks fill the air. Make no mistake, we have just witnessed one of the best Download Festival performances of all time.

https://www.udiscovermusic.com/news/review-download-festival-2018/
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:36 pm

Review in Louder Than War, June 15, 2018:
----------------------------------------------------

Download Festival 2018 review

By Matt Mead

The world famous Download festival, former Monsters of Rock, took place this year at its usual home in the middle of Donnington racecourse track this past weekend. Having attracted stellar acts from the across the world in previous years, 2018’s festival was no different, but with the added bonus of attracting the biggest heavy Rock band on the planet Guns ‘n’ Roses. Matt Mead attended the festival and gives his lowdown on the weekend. [...]

Closing the Saturday night were the monsters of rock that are Guns n Roses. Having reformed in 2016 with original members Axl Roses, Slash and Duff McKagan, the band walked onto stage after some impressive animation, skull n all. Ripping the crowd into a mad frenzy with opening songs It’s So Easy, Mr. Brownstone and Chinese Democracy, this gig wasn’t just going to be any throw away gig, this was the band on form, lapping up the Donnington crowds enthusiasm and electricity with each strike of a chord. This was actually the first time the reformed band had played Donnington since the tragic circumstances of 2 members of the crowd passing away at the last Monsters of Rock festival. Hearing that the band would be playing for a solid 3 hours I doubted that they would be able to stay the distance, with the original band members not exactly youngsters any more, would they be able to last the distance?? You betcha. Slash unleashed solo after solo, with lengthy runs along the stage to enthusiastically close a song Pete Townshend style scissor kicks. Duff was just being Duff, cool as, Paul Simonon style shades n all on stage, bass hanging loosely below, thumping out the bass lines. Axl was Axl, his familiar swaying side to side whilst holding the mike stand, ripped jeans, shirt tied around the waist and leather jacket, prowling the stage to see who his next victim might be, Johnny Rotten style. As you might expect the band played all the hits and more. Welcome To The Jungle, Sweet Child of Mine and November Rain were included in the main set. The unexpected was also played, covers of Wichita Lineman and Black Old Sun and the closing spectacle of Paradise City was met by a finale of a huge firework display. My Madchester memories were blown away by tonight’s performance, truly stunning, one of the great rock bands are back and well on form.

https://louderthanwar.com/download-festival-2018-review/
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:40 pm

Review in Soundsphere Magazine:
------------------------------------------

Live Review: Download Festival 2018 [Saturday]

By Benjamin Gladstone

[...]

Finally, we have the band everyone here has been waiting for. All day, the festival site has been awash in Guns N’ Roses. The site feels noticeably busier today than yesterday, and rightly so. After all, they did say this reunion would never happen, well, not in our lifetime (see what I did there?) and fans have come from all over the world to see one of the biggest bands in the world perform at the most prestigious festival in the world.

This isn’t the first time G’N’R have played here since their original split. Back in 2006, Axl Rose and friends (kind of) performed here but it didn’t exactly go well. A late start, a sloppy performance, constant stage exits and breaks between songs left fans angry and the show was a mess. Since then things have changed. Rose had a short stint in AC/DC, which seems to have straightened him back up in to the performer we all know and love and once more and is now joined back onstage by Slash and Duff. It would have been nice if it was a full reunion, but hell, no one ever thought this would happen so I’m happy to settle and I feel honoured to be witnessing it.

At 7.20pm a video start on the screens, signally the start of a three hour set. When G’N’R appear on stage, the crowd erupts in to a frenzy as they break into opening tracks ‘It’s So Easy’ and ‘Mr Brownstone’. From within what can only be described as the biggest crowd I have ever seen at any show, ever, you can barely hear a word Rose sings. Every word is screamed back to the band by the tens and tens of thousands watching and it is almost deafening.

This is the headline set Festival organisers and festival goers alike had been waiting for. ”You know where the fuck you are?” Roses scream across the crowd, ‘you’re at Donnington, baby. You’re going to die…” as the intro to ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ is teased by Slash. Axle Rose sounds in fine voice, although at times, he does seem to be singing an octave lowers than on record. The early start of the show does kind of feel a little odd, almost as if you are waiting for it to get dark to see the light show and I at the time I do fear that the show may start to drag but when Rose screams on the kick on of ‘Live and let Die’ it actually sends shivers down my spine and the passing thought is gone. Guns’ n’ Rose have a few surprises on the set list for us tonight and the first one is an unexpected cover of Velvet Revolver’s ‘Slither’. It sounds brilliant, although a little strange without the vocal talents of the late Scott Weiland, but Rose does it justice and it takes me back thirteen years to when I saw Velvet Revolver playing that song on this very stage.

Unfortunately, there is little interaction between the band and the huge crowd. It would have been nice to hear a little about why and how they came back together but I imagine that’s a fairly long story to tell. After another surprise cover it becomes apparent that the band are playing homage to lost icons as they play an incredible rendition of Sound Gardens brilliant ‘Black Hole Sun’. The set is brilliant and really is classic after classic. Disappointingly, a few members of the crowd star to leave after ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’. A bit of a pet peeve of mine.

As the sunset brings the darkness, Axl Rose, sat at his piano, breaks into the ‘November Rain’. Maybe it’s the song or maybe it’s the setting sun, but it is a magical moment. The one thing I took away from the show tonight wasn’t the band, or the songs or the amazement of seeing Axl, Slash and Duff on the same stage together again. The one thing I took away and what hit me the most was seeing what it means to the friends around me, the reaction of the fans who never thought they would get another chance to see such a band, never get a chance to hear the songs they listen to as teenagers or what their parents listened to. A band bringing together multiple generations and ages through their music. That’s pretty special.

https://www.soundspheremag.com/reviews/live/live-review-download-festival-2018-saturday/
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:44 pm

Review in Sonic Abuse, June 18, 2018:
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Download Festival 2018 Review

It’s hard to believe that a year has passed since Download 2017 blew our collective socks off and yet here we are, lining up once more for one of the UK’s biggest rock parties. Anticipation for Download 2018 has been high, not least because it boasts two genuine legends in the headline slot – Guns ‘n’ Roses and Ozzy Osbourne, the latter headlining download solo for the first time – not to mention Avenged Sevenfold, whose headline status was assured after the gazillion-selling album ‘the stage’. [...]

However, the aura of anticipation that descends on the arena, despite BSC’s exceptional set, is very much for one band and one band alone. It’s hard to conceive that, after all the hype, Guns ‘n’ Roses (9) could deliver and yet the crowd just keep on coming to the extent that it’s hard to remember a time when Donnington felt so packed. A slight edge of nervousness predominates. The band are scheduled for a three-hour show, but whether they’ll take to the stage on time (or at all) is something that cannot be taken for granted (despite reports that the band have been remarkably on point over the course of the ‘not in this lifetime’ tour). At ten past seven the screens flanking the stage light up to show a short animation of a G’n’R branded tank blasting its way through Europe, eliciting cheers from the tense crowd, and you can feel your heart leap into your throat. The stage is remarkably bare, with little in the way of the glitz and glitter that typified the over-sized band that trawled the world throughout the 00s and, when they finally saunter on stage, Slash with his ubiquitous top hat and Duff McKagan still looking like the coolest man in rock, the cheers from the crowd ripple through air, growing in power as the band slam into an opening double hitter of ‘it’s so easy’ and ‘Mr Brownstone’. Axl is in surprisingly good voice and although he truncates the screams of yore, he nails the vocals with confidence and power, setting the stage for a wild ride through the G’n’R back catalogue. Perhaps the most surprising thing is how of a showman Axl isn’t, preferring to let the simple, stripped-back power of his six-piece band do the talking, and his slightly subdued presence allows the music to shine free from artifice.

Dispatched early in the set, ‘Chinese democracy’ remains a most underrated track and the guitar interplay between Richard Fortus and Slash is refreshing, whilst the echoing intro to ‘welcome to the jungle’ is met by a cheer that can surely be heard inside the airplanes landing behind us. ‘Double talkin’ jive’ is full of power; ‘better’ gains a Slash solo that really brings it alive and ‘estranged’ sounds as good as ever, Slash’s magical leads and Dizzy Reed’s piano still proving the centrepiece of one of Axl’s most compelling ballads. It wouldn’t be a G’n’R show without ‘live and let die’ but it’s the tribute to Slash and Duff’s fallen band mate Scott Weiland, in the form of ‘slither’, that shows just how far these so-recently-estranged rockers have come. In truth, Axl struggles with the vocal, unsure whether to let rip in his own inimitable style or stick close to Weiland’s delivery, the end result an uneasy compromise, but it’s great to hear, although the cheers double as we head then it’s back to the classics with a sleazy ‘rocket queen’ giving way to a rampant ‘you could be mine’ that rocks the field to its core.

For someone bought up on the ‘use your illusion’ video sets, it’s great to see Duff take to the microphone for a punk-as-fuck rendition of Misfits belter ‘attitude’ but the follow up, ‘this I love’ is a rare misstep. A powerful song, full of emotion, it’s an incredibly tough vocal to nail live and Axl just can’t seem to hit (or hold) the note. Overly ambitious, it is a low point in an otherwise full-on show, but the band soon get back on point with a blistering ‘shadow of your love’. ‘Civil war’ is a surprise highlight, before we get an instrumental showcase from Slash that paves the way for an emotional ‘sweet child o’ mine’ and, fuck me, ‘coma’ – a ten minute epic that I never thought I’d see live. With Slash’s grinding riff and Duff’s evil-sounding bass, ‘coma’ reduces a number of grown men to tears and still there’s more to come.

The end of the set sees ‘November rain’ give way to a decent cover of ‘black hole sun’, another tribute to a fallen great, before an extended ‘knockin’ on heaven’s door’ points us towards an encore of ‘night train’ ‘patience’ ‘the seeker’ and, of course, ‘paradise city’ – the weekend’s biggest singalong. It says much that the band’s epic, three hour set feels too short at the conclusion, rather than too long and the crowd hang around hopefully for some time, just in case the band are tempted to offer up another encore. An epic set delivered by a band who never seemed likely to share a stage a gain, Guns ‘n’ Roses were as close to perfection as they were ever likely to get.

https://sonicabuse.com/download-festival-2018-review/
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:52 pm

Review in OriginalRock.net, June 12, 2018:
------------------------------------------------

Live Review: Download Festival 2018

by Darren Hardie

It’s that time of year again where thousands descend on the hallowed grounds of Donington Park, ready for another weekend (or longer for many) of drinking, singing, moshing and more recently, a lot of us even end up watching wrestling. It’s many a metalhead’s favourite time of year so without wasting anytime, let’s get to the bands… [...]

Although many may have seen Parkway as their headliner that day, they finished at 7 o’clock. The reason for that is that in case you somehow missed it, Guns’n’Roses reformed and they’re coming to Download in 2018. Playing to one of the biggest crowds you will ever see, G’n’R play a show as slick as it is long (three hours…) with the crowd eating out the palm of their hands from first song (It’s So Easy) to last (Paradise City). Now I know that Slash could have maybe played a little less solos and Axl has sounded better in the past but who cares? This is one of the best bands ever to do it doing it on the most legendary stage of them all, appreciate that.

https://originalrock.net/2018/06/12/live-review-download-festival-2018/
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 9:59 pm

Review in Loud Noises Magazine, June 15, 2018:
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Guns N' Roses - Download 2018 - Review

by Danny Francis-Butler

Friday saw current hard rock goliaths Avenged Sevenfold provide the pyro, the teenage anthems and more pyro; while Saturday saw 30+ years rock and roll veterans Guns N’ Roses dominate the mainstage with their sleazy riffs, soaring vocals and spectacular stage presence. When first announced that Guns N’ Roses were to play a three hour plus set, reactions were similar across the board.. “Really? Three hours? That’s way too long!” The Guns N’ Roses back catalogue though, featuring two definitive line ups, spans back to their first recording 1986’s EP Live ?!*@ Like a Suicide, their 1987 magnum opus Appetite for Destruction containing massive hits Welcome to the Jungle, Paradise City and Sweet Child of Mine, and their musically profound Use Your Illusion 1 & 2 double release which highlights the bands ability to write songs packed with raw energy and vicious lyrics, as well as the more delicate, epic piano ballads such as November Rain and Estranged. However, the band still felt the need to fill the setlist with covers from Hollywood Rose (the precursor group that would eventually become Guns N’ Roses), The Who and Eric Clapton. Without a doubt, Guns N’ Roses bought together one of the largest crowds to be seen at Donington Park as men, women and children were buzzing in anticipation to see one of the most critically acclaimed rock bands of all time.

The intro video rolled and bassist Duff McKagan coolly entered the stage on his own, plucking out the intro to It’s So Easy. The rest of the band joined when their queues hit, and it really was a marvel to see Duff, recently returning guitar hero Slash and Axl share a stage together….let alone, on time. As soon as the song stopped, drummer Frank Ferrer hammered the band into a blazing rendition of Mr. Brownstone. It seemed as if the band were still trying to get warmed up and were trying to gauge the crowd. The next song was an odd choice. The bands decision to play songs from Chinese Democracy took a few in the audience by surprise and it somewhat perplexed the crowd.. “What is this song? I’ve never heard this song in my life!” ..but I get it, some people bought the album, some people didn’t. However, it goes to show the lengths of professionalism from Slash and Duff to learn the songs from an album they never wrote for nor played on to fill out there 180-minute set. Once that song was over and done with, Axl roused the crowd, screaming “Do you know where you are? You’re in Donington Baby! You’re gonna diiiiiie!” as Slash teased the delayed intro to Welcome to the Jungle. You’d be forgiven if you were to accuse them of dragging out their intros, in fact, most of the filler happened at this point of the set. An Izzy Stradlin deep cut from Use Your Illusion 1 (Double Talkin’ Jive), another song from Chinese Democracy (Better), and the near 10-minute epic A-side release Estranged. You could almost see half of the audience drifting off to sleep but the true Guns N’ Roses fans were loving every minute of it, it is a killer song after all. They then segued into Live and Let Die and the crowd sprung alive once more, singing in unison.

What came next was truly baffling. Guns N’ Roses covering a Velvet Revolver song? You bet your ass they did. And musically it was perfect. Vocally, not so. Axl did not possess the combination of power and silkiness that Scott Weiland had in his voice. The guitar solo on the other hand was superb, Slash nailed it note for note. Maybe it was a compromise between Slash and Axl: “You play my Chinese Democracy songs, I’ll play your Velvet Revolver songs”. When you look back at the history and bad blood between Scott Weiland and Axl Rose in the press, Scott Weiland calling Axl Rose a “fat, Botox faced, wig wearin’ FUCK”, you’d be hard pressed to find a reason why Axl would want to cover a Velvet Revolver song. Perhaps a belated tribute to Weiland. Or perhaps it’s Axl’s response in a way of saying “I’m alive and you’re not.” Combined with the next song on the set, it may just be apparent that it was yet more unnecessary filler. A dragged-out intro to the Appetite for Destruction closer Rocket Queen swiftly follows. There seemed to be a pattern emerging, for every massively popular anthem played, they played a lot of filler afterwards.

The next sequence of songs featured the highly energetic You Could Be Mine. The drum and bass thundered on the intro and then the band hit the crowd with that sleazy, greasy, finger lickin’ good riff of the ages and the crowd came to life once more. A cover of Attitude by the Misfits followed, Axl exits stage left to take break and Duff sings. Perplexing the crowd once more, Axl re-emerged and the band played another song from Chinese Democracy and a Hollywood Rose cover. From here on out they performed another eclectic mix of anthems and fillers including Civil War which was very good. Almost record quality.

Axl introduced the band, including “your fellow Englishman, Slash”. For those who don’t know, Saul Hudson AKA, Slash, was born in Stoke-On-Trent to an English father and an African American mother. Slash then showed off his sweet-sounding blues rock guitar skills for a good ten to fifteen minutes and brought the band into an instrumental version of Johnny B Goode and eventually got into Sweet Child of Mine, the big one everyone had been waiting for. It was next level stuff, we witnessed a band that had sworn down it would never play together again playing their biggest hit, and they didn’t disappoint. Following that was the 10-minute album closer to Use Your Illusion 1, Coma. Slash was now brimming with energy, hopping from one side of the stage to the other. It’s a great riff, lets face it. Following that was Wichita Lineman, which one can only assume was a tribute to the late great Glenn Campbell and an all instrumental version of Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here, which sounded amazing. To bring this sequence to its climax, Axl sat behind the piano and played the band into the piano coda of Derek and Dominoes Layla which lasted a good five more minutes until he carries the band into a rousing rendition of November Rain. 100,000 metal heads swaying in time to the music, lumps in throats, tears on cheeks, singing as loud as they possibly can.

They followed onto a tribute to Chris Cornell by playing a cover of Black Hole Sun, which didn’t stop the tears from the crowd. It was beautiful. Slash broke out the double neck and played what felt like an endless version of Knocking on Heavens Door. Immediately afterwards the energy picked up and they kicked into Nightrain to cap their set, a song about a cheap American fortified wine. The band was a tight unit, a wrecking ball of hard rock playing music that perfectly highlights the alcohol fuelled debauchery that exists within the trenches that is the legendary campsites of Donington Park. The band exits the stage and after a while a jangly acoustic guitar pumps through the PA as Axl whistles the melody to Patience, followed by an electric cover of the Who’s 1970 single The Seeker and then straight into Paradise City. The music and the atmosphere have Slash gyrating from one side of the stage to the other and again, Axl struggles to reach the notes. The band left the stage with literally a bang, as a gobsmacking firework display lit the sky beyond.

What was witnessed on that Saturday night was something not a lot of people have ever or will ever witness again. While they did fill their unnecessarily long festival set, which saw earlier bands have to cut their sets short or start earlier, with unnecessary covers and dragged out intros, the music and the energy that Guns N’ Roses bought to Download Festival was spectacular. Not all the songs were a hit, but they weren’t exactly a miss either. Guns N’ Roses reset the bar for the festival in terms of performance, musicianship and the ability to grip the crowd as they did. This wasn’t just a rock show, but an out and out experience. Some people ask once the Rolling Stones have gone, who will replace them as the worlds everlasting rock band? After this show, you couldn’t argue that it would not be Guns N’ Roses, so if you ever get the chance to see them, I’d highly recommend going. Guns N’ Roses are simply outstanding.

https://www.loudnoisesmag.com/features/2018/6/14/gnr
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 10:06 pm

Review in Clash Music, June 24, 2018:
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Live Report: Download Festival 2018
An exceptional instalment of the rock and metal symposium...


Erm, what the hell is that? That yellow thing in the sky? In recent years, “Drownload” festival has been as synonymous with mud and sordid conditions as riffs and devil horns. This year though, we’ve been blessed with baking sun and blue skies – even if some punters are looking as crispy as a sausage cooked in Satan’s fire pits by the end of it. [...]

Saturday is of course all about Guns N' Roses and is by far the busiest day of the weekend to the point where it becomes a tiresome task to navigate the site. The main stage is an Axl Rose-approved all day warm up of ballsy rock (fabulously on form Black Stone Cherry), vintage rock (Thunder) and brawny rock n roll ( Monster Truck) but elsewhere, the line-up covers all musical bases, from Asking Alexandria’s taut stadium anthems, to Knocked Loose’s incendiary hardcore and instrumental tech metal from Plini. [...]

So far, L7’s reunion has been the antithesis of “doing it for the money”. The grunge stalwarts’ all round badass-ness hasn’t dimmed a bean and ‘Fast And Frightening’ and ‘Shitlist’ sound Just as feral as they did back in the 90s.

You could say the same about Guns N' Roses. Usually when bands this size reunite, it reeks of ego boosting or looming tax bills but the Not In This Lifetime tour has surpassed all expectations. Axl Rose is on fine vocal form and there’s even a faint whiff of that same danger that first made the band such a sleazy, masculine thrill back in the 80s.

The set is perfectly paced so that the band hold the crowd – a huuuuge crowd at that – spellbound for a full three hours. Juggernauts like ‘It’s So Easy’, ‘Mr Brownstone’ and ‘Welcome To The Jungle’ are followed by beasts like ‘Live Or Let Die’, ‘Coma’ and ‘Rocket Queen’.

Yes Slash’s solos go on a bit. And yes the band probably play too many covers – although a shout out goes to Soundgarden’s ‘Black Hole Sun’ and ‘Slither’, a call back to Slash and Duff’s ex- band Velvet Revolver. But only a heart of concrete could remain unswayed by the sheer joy of 80,000 plus people bellowing ‘Paradise City’ while fireworks explode overhead. Guns N' Roses were bloody brilliant.

https://www.clashmusic.com/live/live-report-download-festival-2018/
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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 10:11 pm

Photo credit: JAWA




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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 10:15 pm

Photo credit: Jo Hale




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2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England Empty Re: 2018.06.09 - Download Festival, Donnington Park, England

Post by Blackstar Sat Jan 13, 2024 10:19 pm

Photo credit: Paul Harries/Kerrang!




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