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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.


1987.07.DD - Geffen Press Release - Release of Appetite For Destruction

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1987.07.DD - Geffen Press Release - Release of Appetite For Destruction Empty 1987.07.DD - Geffen Press Release - Release of Appetite For Destruction

Post by Blackstar Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:33 pm

Many thanks to @troccoli for sharing this with us, and for the amazing collection of GN'R memorabilia he has made available on his site. The original images of the press release can be found here:


There’s gonna be a whole lot of shakin’ goin on.....
A little over two years ago as we were making our usual A&R inquisition rounds of local record stores, night spots and night people, the words Guns N’ Roses kept coming up with adjectives usually ascribed to the highest realms of human experience sprinkled liberally alongside. It had been a long while since we’d heard any group described this way (especially a local one) and particularly by people of good taste and judgement in matters musical. We figured we’d better investigate. Since none of them were living at a fixed address or phone number (Axl was sleeping in construction sites) finding them proved to be no easy task even with the help of our friends. Therefore, imagine our excitement when we received a phone call from Joseph Brooks of local record emporium Vinyl Fetish, informing us of a headlining club date they would soon be doing and of the fact that he had put us on the guest list. Be still my heart!
On the appointed evening, we cut out of a very happening party at Ed Rosenblatt’s early – Teresa even missed The Replacements on Saturday Night Live – and dashed to The Roxy. The big moment had arrived... or so we thought. Due to God only knows what, we arrived only to be told that there had been a lineup switch and they had already played. We were crushed. The evening was not a total loss however. Guns N’ Roses were still lurking around the club and we finally got to snare them. We also got to witness our first ever performance by Axl when he jumped on stage to do “Mama Kin” with LA Guns. He reminded us of the Feral Boy in Mad Max.
We fared better at our next outing at the infamous Troubadour, which was jammed to the rafters. Guns N’ Roses took to the stage and killed! Totally, completely, and with no looking back. We didn’t look back either. These guys had to be on Geffen and besides, it had been ten years since the Sex Pistols and we felt the time was overdue for a band to come along and reclaim the legacy. We knew we had seen that band that night. Guns N’ Roses were the missing link between the sassiness of the Stones and early Aerosmith, the trashiness of the NY Dolls, and the danger and challenge the Sex Pistols had posed. The cycle was coming around again and here was a band finally making it happen in the 80’s. Just as importantly, they meant every word, move and lick. No posers here.
As is usual in the overhype climate of LA, a bidding war ensued with every major label in town participating full tilt – one of those rare moments in the biz when everyone agrees with each other.
Not being fools, and starving as well, the band took full advantage of the opportunity to eat steak and lobster three times a day. In the end, they chose Geffen, despite a last minute barrage of phone calls from labels offering to double and triple our offer. As we had suspected all along, they did have brains.
A period of writing, rehearsing and performing before increasingly packed clubs followed and their notoriety and reputation spread. At the beginning of 1987, Guns N’ Roses independently released a live four song EP consisting of two originals and two covers. Entitled “Live like A Suicide” and released on the Uzi Suicide label, it quickly sold out and cemented their growing reputation. A heavy street buzz began to develop all over on the band with both national and international press exposure resulting (as you can tell). Guns N’ Roses has already been on the cover of Hit Parader three times this year, an unprecedented achievement for a group with no major label record out.
Early this year was also the time they went into the studio to record “Appetite For Destruction”. The producer chosen was Mike Clink, who had been Ron Nevison’s engineer on all his projects, which included UFO, Survivor and Ozzy Osbourne among others. The album was then mixed by Steve Thomson and Michael Barbiero, who produced the Tesla album. The package will be quite unique with a different cover for the LP, cassette, and CD, with a second LP cover slated when the initial album run sells out. The first album cover is a controversial painting by Robert Williams from which the record gets its name. This cover has already been the cause of much anxiety and debate (suffice it to say Tipper Gore will love it). We also anticipate it will quickly become a collectors item, so hang onto your copies.
We take great pride in presenting these twelve songs to you and feel very priviledged to be involved with a band of this caliber. We hope you will share our excitement and enthusiasm in maintaining the time honored tradition of no-holds barred, take no prisoners rock & roll.
Kick out the jams,
Tom Zutaut
Teresa Ensenat
W. Axl Rose – lead vocals
Slash – lead guitars, backing vocals
Izzy Stradlin – guitars, backing vocals
Duff “Rose” McKagan – bass, backing vocals
Steven Adler – drums
“They’re the next band that everybody tries to copy...” Circus
“Rowdy, raunchy, gut-level rockers who live on the streets of Hollywood and put their experience to music...”  Rip
“Guns N’ Roses know the hard way up...” Concert Shots
“Warning. Do not mistake Guns N’ Roses for a modest, meek group of musicians. They are five different personalities with a single common denominator: cockiness...”  Music Connection
“ raw, prickly and glaring as a fresh tattoo etched into tender new skin.”  Sounds
“You are the loudest band I’ve ever seen in my life...”  Geffen A&R Rep
“Loud is a way of life...”  Steven Adler
“Guns N’ Roses? Yeah, they’ll make it... if they live long enough.”  Geffen Staffer
Rock ‘n’ roll: it’s more than music. It’s a legendary lifestyle and no one’s living it to the hilt like Guns N’ Roses, the most intense, insolent and original new musical arrivals in much too long. Proof? It’s on Guns N’ Roses’ debut album for Geffen Records, Appetite For Destruction.
Released in July, 1987, it’s an aptly titled tour de force written, arranged and performed by a band that, in one lightning stroke, restores all the menace, mystery and rebel kicks in this age of safe and sanitized pop fodder. With special thanks to “all those teachers, preachers, cops and elders who never believed,” Appetite For Destruction, in short, is aimed at restoring fascination with dangerous music.
Pulling talent from such far-flung locales as Seattle, Indiana, Stock-In-Trent, England and the heart of Hollywood, Guns N’ Roses took the L.A. club circuit by storm three years ago with a blistering on (and off) stage attack that used blues, R&B and punk as a jumping off point. It was a leap that landed them on the top of a lot of “Most Promising” lists and the predictions were proven with the release of their four-song EP, Live?!*@ Like A Suicide, on the band’s Uzi Suicide label in 1986.
“We don’t really care if people think we’ve got a bad attitude,” asserts Izzy on the subject of the band’s notorious behavior. “We’re the only band to come out of L.A. recently that’s real. And the kids know it.”
“We’d rather be unknown and live in Idaho than to have someone tell us what to play and how to ‘make it,’” adds Axl. “We’re working on getting everything we want, our way... all the money, all the power, and all the control over everything there is.”
“Have you ever found a new band and you want to turn everyone on to ‘em?” asks Slash. “You want to spread the disease until you finally have 300 people hearing the same thing you hear. That’s how our music spread and that’s how we keep close to our roots. We’re from the streets and, no matter where we go from here, we’ll always have those roots.”
For Guns N’ Roses, it’s more than just talk. This is one band that has consistently put it on the line for rock ‘n’ roll, as evidenced in the dozen cuts of Appetite For Destruction, which includes the debut single “Welcome To The Jungle.” The album is a propulsive and compulsive example of the basics of backbeat and volume; a no-holds-barred, kick-out-the-jams, rude, wild and relentless slice of the genuine article.
# # #
Appetite For Destruction was produced and engineered by Mike Clink and mixed by Steve Thomson and Michael Barbiero. It was recorded at Rumbo Studios in Cangoa Park, Take One Studio in Burbank and Can Am Studio in Tarzana and mixed at Media Sound in New York City.
Guns N’ Roses comment on the twelve songs on their first album:
“Welcome To The Jungle”
(Slash): “It's welcome to the jungle; an introduction to Guns N' Roses.”
(Axl): “I consider the first song to be the most representative.”
(Izzy): “It's about Hollywood streets; true to life.”
(Slash): “That's the first song I had that Axl wrote lyrics to and helped me write. I had the riff part of it.”
(Axl): “Yeah, I wrote the words in Seattle. It's a big city but at the same time it's still a small city compared to L.A. and the things that you're gonna learn. It seemed a lot more rural up there. I just wrote how L.A. looked to me. If someone comes to town and they want to find something, they can find whatever they want.”
(Slash): “It came across, I think it was, on the third take. We did the whole album that way. Second or third take. That's where spontaneity comes from. If you don't get it by then, you've lost the feel of it.”
(Steven): “I like the cowbell part.”
“It’s So Easy”
(Duff): “A song West (Arkeen) and myself wrote. It's an account of a time me and him, and also the rest of the band, were kinda going through-we didn't have money, but we had a lot of hangers on and girls we could basically live off of...things were just too easy. There's an emptiness; it's so easy.”
(Axl): “I got the greatest picture. I cut this ad out of Hustler magazine. It's this girl bent over so her ass is up in the air and it says: ‘it's so easy.’"
(Duff): “No way!”
(Axl): “Yeah, it's an ad for Easy Dates.”
(Slash): “There's a lot to say for that period of time when you start to lose the excitement of just chasing chicks. You start going after really bizarre girls, like librarians and stuff. Just to catch 'em; to say I finally went out and caught a girl that wouldn't be my normal kinda date, cause everything else is starting to get...'it's so easy'.”
(Axl): “I sang in a low voice cause that fit the attitude of that song better. Wasn't something I really thought about, I just started doing it. People ask why I don't sing like that on a lot of songs and it's only because I just sing whatever the song deserves. And it deserved being sung different than the other material. It's a hard, tight, simple, punk rock song. When I went to England they said punk's been dead for ten years. And I said, ‘it's really weird cause America doesn't know that.’"
(Steven): “Great rhythm. Just rocks. Personally I like the guitar solo in it. I like that part of the song cause me and Duff are rockin'. Has more feel to it than just a machine.”
(Slash): “At the grocery store the other night some kid saw me looking for wine and he says, 'hey man, let's get some Nightrain.' Nightrain is just like ‘...Jungle,’ it's very indicative of what the band's all about. I remember when it first came together, we'd hitchhiked to the Rainbow and were walking down to the Troubadour and just started yelling 'Nightrain' 'cause we were drinking it...”
(Axl): “It's a dollar a bottle, 19% alcohol and a quart of it, you'll black out. It's cheap.”
(Izzy): “We hung out at the Troubadour, but it was dead and we just started fantasizing and walking back up to the Strip just singing along.”
(Duff): “We were living in the Gardener Street studio, where we had one little box of a room. We had no money but we could dig up a buck to go down to this liquor store. It happened to have this great wine called Nightrain that would fuck you up for a dollar. Five dollars and you'd be gone. We lived off this stuff.”
(Axl): “At the time we didn't know anything about anybody else's version of a song called ‘Nightrain’ either.”
(Slash): “It’s nothing to do with being a hobo and stealing the midnight fucking train.”
(Axl): “As far as the lyrics go, it's more attitude and describing how you feel when you're on it, rather than necessarily how you may be. You feel invincible.”
“Out Ta Get Me”
(Axl): “The lyrics are saying 'I've always been in trouble but I'm still handling it.' Like every time you turn around, someone is trying to screw you over financially, or the cops are banging on your door and you didn't do anything. It's just being railroaded into something and trying to get out from underneath it. You know, parents, teachers, preachers... everybody. The last verse Slash and I put together as a joke 'cause we were talking about how we get in fights sometimes, and how some people get pissed off that you're drunk. But they're the ones that bought the bottle of whiskey to get you drunk on. Some people say I got a chip on my shoulder.”
(Slash): “I know a big rock star right now who buys all the fucking booze and then drinks it all up and he gets fucking irrate.'Out Ta Get Me' is Guns N' Roses' big anarchy statement.”
(Axl): “We had that as one of our opening numbers for a while cause we were headed to a Roxy show and got pulled over by four cops. They picked up a bag off the street; said we threw it out the window and there were drugs in it. There were no drugs in it. And they were just trying to hassle us, saying our advance money in our pockets was drug money. They searched everything, pushed us around and we were late for a show.”
(Slash): “It's kinda hard to explain this so people can understand it. We were one of the most opposed bands. We had opposition from everywhere, the whole fucking time. Still. It's not as bad now cause we're signed and some people like the shit we do. But we started out with so many people from so many different directions, trying to lash out at us. And trying to say Guns N’ Roses this and that, and don't let them in here, and don't let them do this, and don't let them do that, and watch them, and this and that and the other.”
“Mr. Brownstone”
(Axl): “When we moved out of our place on Fountain and La Cienega I was the last one to leave, and found this piece of yellow paper wadded up in the corner where Izzy's and Steven's room was. It had the lyrics to ‘...Brownstone’ on it. I read it and went, ‘this is great.’ They said they had music for it and we ended up starting to rehearse this thing.”
(Slash): “A lot of people have a misconception about this song. They think it's about drugs. It's not so much a statement about our drug habits; it's a more a statement about other people's drug habits. It's a good little ditty that people can listen to and maybe think about what they're doing. Try and get themselves in perspective. I know one thing, a lot of people who are doing a lot of fucking drugs all the time don't have any kind of...”
(Axl): “They don't have a job that they're doing at the same time.”
(Slash): “Yeah, a band can keep you together. Like, we can all go through all kinds of shit, but the band keeps us just enough together. But if you don't have a band, don't have a job, don't have anything you're trying to do, then somehow drugs seem to take over. It's not preaching. Just a statement-you can listen to it, or not. You can just listen to the guitars or the drums...whatever you want.”
(Izzy): “It can mean a million different things to a million different people. It's like when you listen to a Zeppelin song, what do you think? I have all kinds of fucking wild ideas about what ‘Custard Pie’ is about.”
“Paradise City”
(Duff): “The chords to that song I wrote when I first moved to L.A., when I didn't know anybody and was kinda feeling a little down. So that kinda came out, like reaching for something, you know.”
(Slash): “The best songs we do, they're collaborations. The best way to do it is to have the whole band sit there and listen to everybody else's ideas, and put it all together to make something that everybody enjoys playing.”
(Duff): “If one person brings in a song to this band, it always gets raped by the other four people. It always gets changed around to where it’s Guns N' Roses.”
(Axl): “The verses are more about being in the jungle; the chorus is like being back in the midwest or somewhere. It reminds me of when I was a little kid and just looked up at the blue sky and went ‘wow, what is all this, it's so big out there.’ Everything was more innocent. There are parts of the song that have more of a down home feel. And when I started putting the overlayers of my vocals (I put five tracks on there), it seemed that it came out like some Irish or Scottish heritage. One of the weird things is I had a feeling it would go over good in Europe. The kids there sang ‘...Brownstone,’ they sang ‘It's So Easy,’ ‘Mama Kin,’ and these other songs that they'd heard on the EP. They also sang ‘Paradise City’ and they'd never heard it!”
(Izzy): “They sang as loud as our stage monitors. We could hear them over the monitors.”
“My Michelle”
(Axl): “I know a girl named Michelle and she became a really good friend of the bands’ and I was going out with her for awhile. It's a true story. Slash and some other members of the band said that's kinda too heavy to say about poor, sweet Michelle; she'll freak out. I'd written this nice sweet song about her, and then I looked at it and thought 'that doesn't really touch any basis of reality,' so I put down an honest thing. It describes her life. This girl leads such a crazy life with doing drugs, or whatever she's doing at the time, you don't know if she's gonna be there tomorrow. Every time I see Michelle I'm really relieved and glad. I showed her the lyrics after about three weeks of debating, and she was so happy that someone didn't paint just a pretty picture. She loves it. It was a real song to her, not something hokey.”
“Think About You”
(Izzy): “It's a quick love song about drugs, sex, Hollywood and money. Next song.”
(Duff): “It's Izzy's song.”
(Izzy): “It's just a song like that. I don't want to dig deeper than that.”
“Sweet Child Of Mine”
(Axl): “That's a true story about my girlfriend at this time.”
(Izzy): “That's a real love song.”
(Axl): “I had written this poem, reached a deadend with it and put it on the shelf. Then Slash and Izzy got working together on songs and I came in, Izzy hit a rhythm, and all of a sudden this poem popped into my head. It just all came together. A lot of rock bands are too fucking wimpy to have any sentiment
or any emotion in any of their stuff unless they're in pain. It's the first positive love song I've ever written, but I never had anyone to write anything about, I guess.”
(Duff): “It was probably the hardest song for me and Steve to record, just because you have to keep a steadiness and also keep the emotion in it.”
“You’re Crazy”
(Izzy): “No... it's called 'Fucking Crazy.'”
(Slash): “It's called 'You're Crazy' on the record.”
(Axl): “Yeah, it's called 'You're Crazy' cause I just didn't want some asshole picking it up and they go, 'they put fuck on here,' and then they won't even give it a chance. It was written on acoustic, about another girl we know who was crazy.”
(Slash): “When I play that song, I don't even know what I'm playing. It's just such a kick in the ass for me, so I run around. I try to concentrate on the music and keep kinda stationary, except on that song. I don't play the same solo every night cause I'm not on the same wavelength as other nights.”
“Anything Goes”
(Duff): “That used to be a 12-1/2 minute song.”
(Axl): “Izzy and I and this guy Chris Weber wrote it a long time ago. It's had different verses at different times. Everytime I'd do it live, people liked it, but it just depressed the shit outa me on stage.”
(Izzy): “Used to be speed metal too.”
(Axl): “Yeah, we did it so fast. Then wrote another version about our times at the old studio and we kept that for awhile. But then when we came down to record it, we didn’t want to. But Tom (Zutaut, Geffen A&R man) was very adamant about wanting that song recorded, so we figured 'we're gonna have to rewrite it.' In preproduction we came up with something we liked a lot better, but the verses weren't written until the night we recorded the song. Basically, I just wanted that song an 'anything goes in sex' type song.”
“Rocket Queen”
(Izzy): “Another true story.”
(Axl): “I wrote this song for this girl who was gonna have a band and she was gonna call it Rocket Queen. She kinda kept me alive for awhile. The last part of the song is my message to this person, or anybody else who can get something out of it. It's like there's hope and a friendship note at the end of the song. For that song there was also something I tried to work out with various people – a recorded sex act. It was somewhat spontaneous but premeditated; something I wanted to put on the record.”
(Izzy): “All these quotes were Axl's cause I wasn't there.”
(Axl): “It was a sexual song and it was a wild night in the studio. This girl we know was dancing; everyone was getting real excited. The night coulda gotten really explosive, lots of trouble for everyone, and I thought wait a minute, how can we make this productive.”

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