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metal talk
27th November 2017

guns n roses

It doesn't matter whether or not you're a fan of Guns N' Roses because it's highly unlikely you haven't heard at least one of their songs. From 'Welcome To The Jungle' to 'Sweet Child 'O Mine' and 'Paradise City', this iconic band is one we're all guilty of singing along to at some point or other.

But what has made Guns N' Roses so successful, and what's in store for them in the future?

The History Of Guns N' Roses

It probably goes without saying that Guns N' Roses have had a rather 'colourful' history, starting as soon as they burst onto the music scene. At a time when pop-Metal and dance music were dominating the pop charts, Guns N' Roses reintroduced rock'n'roll to the music scene. Their music was raw, gritty, and above all, honest, which is everything a Heavy Metal and hard rock band should be.

They shot to stardom with their album 'Appetite For Destruction', with their breakthrough hit being 'Sweet Child O' Mine'. Izzy Stradlin and Slash brought fans duelling guitar riffs, while Axl Rose wrote songs that told sordid tales of sex, drugs and indifference.

Meanwhile, in the background, drummer Steven Adler and bassist Duff McKagan helped keep the music's power with their rhythm.

Fans found them refreshing because they could evoke a whole host of emotions, from hatred to devotion, which was added to by the primitive rage of Rose. Throughout the 80s and 90s, they continued to be one of the most interesting and popular bands around, but then, as alternative rock started to emerge, Rose was left to his own devices.

Apart from a few live shows and public appearances (plus quite a few changes in guitarists and band members), Rose spent a lot of time recording before finally releasing an album in 2008 - 'Chinese Democracy'.

In 2009, Sixx:A.M. guitarist DJ Ashba joined the band and they continued to produce new material, with some former members making the odd guest appearance.

Then, in 2012, Guns N' Roses were inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, but just days before the ceremony was due to take place, Axl Rose released a statement explaining that he wouldn't be attending. He also said that it was impossible for any kind of reunion, telling fans it was "time to move on". Steven Adler, Matt Sorum, Duff McKagan and Slash all showed up, though, with Myles Kennedy stepping in as lead vocalist.

This new line-up spent much of the summer in 2014 touring, before rumours started to fly in 2015 that Slash and Axl had finally made peace. A world tour followed and the band was once again able to fill football stadiums around the world.

What Led To Their Success?

There aren't many bands who could go through so many changes while still remaining so popular. But in Guns N' Roses’ case, it's perhaps their unpredictable, volatile and gritty nature that's fed their success.

Equally, some argue that because they split up at the peak of their success, fans were always left wanting more. And during the time they were out of the public eye, their absence made Guns N' Roses fans' hearts grow fonder.

The anticipation for a reunion was fuelled by the airtime they received on radio stations around the world and the merchandise that continued to be released. Roses enthusiasts are able to purchase anything from hoodies to coffee cups. Even an online slot game became available, allowing Guns N' Roses fans to play a game that is entirely based on their heroes.

The amount of merchandise that is available means the hype surrounding the band never dies and fans can capture a glimpse into their history in extraordinary ways. Therefore, even though they were away from the music scene for quite some time, younger fans who weren't around at their time of origin were given an insight into their music. This allowed the band to build up a new following of younger fans who were keen to explore this era of rock.

What's in Store for Guns N' Roses in 2018?

Fans will be pleased to know that Guns N' Roses aren't hanging up their mics (again) anytime soon. Not only have they been announced as the final headline act at Download Festival 2018, but they're embarking on a tour in Europe and Russia next year, too.

This tour is the latest leg from their tour – 'Not In This Lifetime' – and sees them performing fourteen extra shows that start on 3rd June at Berlin's Olympiastadion and finish on 21st July at Gothenburg's Ullevi Stadium. These dates also include appearances at the Spanish and French Download festivals.

And the best bit? Guitarist Richard Fortus has said that since bassist Duff McKagan and guitarist Slash re-joined the line-up, the band has been even tighter and more focused than ever before. He also went on to say that he doesn't think the band has ever sounded as good as it does right now, with Axl also performing at his best.


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