Music Man Reviews: Appetite For Destruction CD

By: The Music Man

Aug 15 2009

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Category: Music

1 Comment

Guns N’ Roses – a rock band that’s become an icon of 80’s rock, specifically for the music that’s on the very CD I am reviewing. Appetite For Destruction was released on July 21, 1987. The original cover depicted a robotic rapist who is about to be punished by a metallic figure. Such a cover caused massive amounts of controversy, with many music stores refusing to sell the album. In a compromise, the original cover was put inside and an alternate cover was put on the front, which most people are familiar with. It shows a cross with skulls of the five members at the time: Izzy Stradlin (top skull), Steven Adler (left skull), Axl Rose (center skill), Duff McKagan (right skull), and Saul Hudson, a.k.a Slash (bottom skull). The album has sold at least 28 million copies worldwide and is considered one of the best hard rock albums by many people.

So, like my Death Magnetic Review, we’re going to start off with the specs. There’s a total of twelve songs, and the total running time is 53 minutes, 48 seconds. According to my estimations, that means each song is around four and a half minutes. The shortest song is “It’s So Easy” with a time of three minutes and twenty-one seconds. The longest is “Paradise City”, one of the singles off of the album, clocking in at six minutes, forty-six seconds. And here’s the song list:

  1. Welcome To The Jungle – 4:31
  2. It’s So Easy – 3:21
  3. Nightrain – 4:26
  4. Out Ta Get Me – 4:20
  5. Mr. Brownstone – 3:46
  6. Paradise City – 6:46
  7. My Michelle – 3:39
  8. Think About You – 3:50
  9. Sweet Child O’ Mine – 5:55
  10. You’re Crazy – 3:25
  11. Anything Goes – 3:25
  12. Rocket Queen – 6:13

The first song, “Welcome To The Jungle”, just catches your attention right away. The guitar intro with the echoes from the delay pedal are just earcatching. There’s a just a huge tension hanging in the intro, and then the buildup, then Axl’s says a nice, strong “cha”. This leads into a strong catchy riff by Slash. It’s a riff that has an 80’s metal flare to it, and it’s hard not to love it. The song’s lyrics give us an insight into the city life and this song is just a spectacle in rock. Slash gives his own twist to the sound, adding a heavy, hard rock-blues tone to it.

Each song on this album is a masterpiece all on its own. Take any song from Appetite For Destruction, and it’s worth being released as a single. Heck, they could have just changed the title to “Greatest Hits” because that’s what it basically is. From the strong beats of “It’s So Easy” to the craziness of “Anything Goes” to the relaxed, groovin’ feel of “Sweet Child O’ Mine”, everything about this album is amazing. It’s so diverse in feel, yet it all comes down to the nitty-gritty mix of punk-rock, blues-rock, metal, and classic rock.

Now let’s talk about lyrics. The lyrics are pretty wide-ranging, but it can be broken down to love, drugs, and partying. Of course, “Sweet Child O’ Mine” has the most beautiful lyrics out of all in this album. Written by Axl for his girlfriend, this song shows the softer side of Axl, a loving and caring side. This album also has lyrics about the hard, rough sex-life. The best example of this is the song, “Anything Goes”. When the opening lines are “I been thinkin’ bout/Thinkin’ ’bout sex”, you know you’re in a for a good ride.

Other songs relating to love are “My Michelle” and “You’re Crazy”, which both show how crazy some chicks are. After all, when a girl stays “late at night” to do their “coke for free”, “drivin’ … friends crazy”, ya know you got one heck of a girl.

Now, analyzing the band and its individual members, an amazing sound and feel comes out of each person, contributing to the rockin’ music that is the original GnR. Axl’s vocals are just jaw-dropping, with the huge range he can get out of his voice. This can be evidenced by songs like “It’s So Easy” and “Mr. Brownstone”, where Axl effortlessly goes from a low, nasal singing to high screams. Then we have Saul Hudson, more commonly known as Slash. His guitar playing is great. He’s pumped out awesome riffs like the intro of “Sweet Child O’ Mine” and the intro to “Nightrain”. All of his solos are superb, with the already mentioned blues influence on a lot of them.

Izzy Stradlin, the other guitarist, is pretty good. When it comes to rhythm, it can’t get any better than Stradlin. He provides a solid background to any of Slash’s solos. He even plays some great solos himself, as evidenced in the battle-style solos of “Anything Goes”. Duff McKagen, the bassist, can’t be heard all too often, but is a great filler. Sometimes, like in “Sweet Child O’ Mine” he acts like a third guitar part, which I think is awesome.

And finally, Steven Adler is a great drummer for the band. His crisp beats are essential to the sound. They have the 80’s rock feel that leads the music. The cymbal ride with the heavy snare and bass is totally rad during a lot of the solos. It may be repetive, but hey, it’s all part of the game.

Now, time to get to the nitpicking. There’s a lot of swearing and cussing, but that shouldn’t bother anybody that wants to listen to GnR. And a lot of sexual stuff. One major complaint I have is the recording screams and squeals of a girl in “Rocket Queen”. When I first heard it, I was saying, “Damn! An in-studio f***ing? What the h*ll is this? I just wanna listen to Slash’s solo!” If you’re one of those young teens that likes hearing that type of stuff, there ya go. But, if you’re like me, a guy that just wants the music, it really gets in the way. A major reason I don’t listen to “Rocket Queen” often is because of that. I really hate it. Especially if you wanna play “Rocket Queen” in a public place, like a party. Then it get really awkward.

Alright, now that my tiny rant is over with, another gripe is that in some songs, there’s not enough of Axl singing. Or when he does sing a lot he just repeats the same thing over and over. Like “Sweet Child O’ Mine” basically has Axl singing “Ohhhhhh, ohhhhhh, sweet child o’ mine” frequently. “Paradise City” has a similar fate, with the chorus being overused. Y’know, “Take me down to the paradise city, where the grass is green and the girls are pretty”.

Those are just a couple complaints, not too major. Just me being a bit of a Negative Nancy. Doesn’t really affect the grade because the album is just filled with rockin’ music.

So, in conclusion, this is one of those 80’s albums that is a must buy. If this hard rock album is not in your collection, go get it. All the songs are awesome and even if you’re not a huge rock fan, you’ll enjoy this album. Songs like “Sweet Child O’ Mine” and “Paradise City” will appeal to a broader audience. And that was the beauty of Appetite For Destruction: it brought hard rock to more of a mainstream outlook.

Rating: A


One comment on “Music Man Reviews: Appetite For Destruction CD”

  1. Scraymond pwns

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