The rumors are swirling! Could they actually be true? Going by what various music websites are reporting, the “classic” line-up of Guns N’ Roses is due to announce a reunion tour any day/hour/minute now. It’s almost too good to be true, but I hope it all works out. I won’t hold my breath for a new studio album (although that would be the Holy Grail) but if they can get through a tour or a spot of big festival shows and get it on DVD, great.
As great as this news is, I’m slightly saddened because I guess this means the end of Axl’s “hired guns”. Sure, the original GNR run is the best, but I really loved Chinese Democracy and would have been content with more music in that vein. Basically, I just want Axl to keep making albums. Whether it’s solo, classic GNR or modern GNR.
Okay, so with GNR on everyone’s mind lately, I figured what better time to return to their discography and select the best of the best? Here’s what I think are the band’s best tunes. I’m excluding their various excellent covers because GNR has written so many great original tunes, they don’t need to hide behind cover songs (even if they did record an album full of them)!
It should come as no surprise that a whopping NINE TRACKS from the band’s debut album, Appetite for Destruction, are mentioned here. You can’t really argue with the placement of any of these tracks.
The sole song I from GN’R Lies, “Patience” is easily stands out from the pack on that album. This one came so quickly on the heels of Appetite for Destruction, it sounds like it could’ve easily fit in on that record.
In my opinion, history has not been kind to the first of the Use Your Illusion albums. The album seems a bit more crass and has a lot more filler that sees the band failing to capture the raw energy from their debut. I love the album, don’t get me wrong, but the songs don’t hope up as well when compared to the band’s best songs. Still, it delivered two monster ballads: “November Rain” and “Don’t Cry”. An alternate lyric version of “Don’t Cry” appears on Use Your Illusion II and it is just as good.
Unlike Use Your Illusion I, the second album to come out of those sessions holds up quite a bit better. Much better songwriting this time. Not a flawless album, but seven absolute classics come from it. I even think “Estranged” is a better epic than “November Rain”.
People probably won’t agree, but I think Chinese Democracy had a number of great tunes. I love the album but couldn’t justify putting those songs in a list that includes these other songs. That is, except for “This I Love”. It’s my favorite song off the album and one of GNR’s best ballads.