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Guns N Roses Chinese Democracy Geffen Records
1790607
· Produced By: Axl Rose & Caram Costanzo

· Running Time: 71.26

· Release Date: Out Now

· Released: World

· Musical Style: Hard Rock

· Links: Guns N Roses
84%
Songs: 74%
Sound: 94%
It's hard to know where to start with this one. This is one of those albums I just love reviewing (note the use of sarcasm) – because I'm screwed either way!
There are so many passionate opinions on this band from just about every quarter, so no matter which way I review this, I will hear from someone unhappy about something! Guaranteed.

Chinese Democracy - the most expensive record ever made…the longest wait for any new album by a band…the most number of band members coming and going and contributing in some part…the most epic record ever…or perhaps the biggest flop in all rock n roll history?
All valid comments or questions raised in relation to Guns N Roses' most talked about Chinese Democracy release.
Is it the best rock record ever released? No. Is it Guns N Roses? Not in the standard image of the name, no. Worth a 13 year wait? Absolutely not. But a complete disaster? Some will say so, but objectively speaking, no…it certainly isn't that. Its actually rather good all things considered, but it has so many things stacked against it that even if it was Dark Side Of The Moon or Physical Graffiti, it would still attract the same amount of criticism.
There are some very worthy moments on this album and some truly epic soundscapes. But there's also a few ingredients missing. It doesn't make sense for a record that has taken so long to be released to be under done, but it almost feels unfinished in places.

To really accept this record for what it is, one must put the name Guns N Roses out of your mind. GNR has always signified dangerous rock n roll to me and Chinese Democracy may be grand, adventerous and truly epic, but dangerous it isn't.
The album is the sole vision of frontman and vocalist Axl Rose and for that you must give him credit. But at the same time, he must also be responsible for any shortcomings.
I have not rushed into a review of this record. I note that major press outlets must quickly pass judgment and I think generally speaking the critical feedback has been understandably mixed.
But I have chosen to live with it as long as possible to best get to know the record.
I must say that Appetite For Destruction has been on my shelf for the full 21 years since it was released. I was one of the first to purchase it, before the hype kicked in and it remains an all-time classic for me and an album I still admire. Such a record was a snapshot of an era and could never be repeated, so I never expected such with Chinese Democracy.
There is a certain intensity about this record, but overall I found it to be mellower than expected. And due to the length of time it has taken to get this out, some of the industrial and programmed elements of the music doesn't sound as innovative as it could have. Had this record emerged in 2000-2002, then I think it would have sounded more groundbreaking.
Some have hailed this record as a work of art that will influence the way music is made and help bring rock back to the fore. I don't see that in any way. Any big selling rock record is a good thing, but this isn't likely to influence a new generation of kids.
What is missing for me is the big riffs and the big choruses. Every track of Appetite yielded a killer hook and Use Your Illusion had that experimental style, but still with that dangerous edge.
But Chinese Democracy is not a hit single kind of record. Individual songs are not necessarily the way to appreciate this record. It sounds better played as a whole, from start to finish…certainly not an iTunes friendly release in the day and age of kids picking out individual songs of an artist.
That aspect I really like…as I feel the art of creating a musical landscape is dying in some way. But in-between there are not enough peaks and valleys for me. Not enough light and shade.

Track By Track:
I'm not sure what kind of intro would best suit an anticipated album such as this, but the title track Chinese Democracy kicks off pretty much as expected. A slow building intro, then a riff to break through the mood, followed by a shrill scream and a loud burst of musical exuberance. Axl varies his vocal delivery to great effect and guitar solos run left and right over the base riff of what is a fairly solid and aggressive hard rocker.
Shackler's Revenge takes the industrial influences to the forefront, together with a gruff spoken vocal and effects dropped in everywhere. The chorus isn't an epic hook, but is driven by a good guitar sound and when Axl takes his voice up that octave or two, you get a reminder of what this band was once all about.
The uptempo rocker Better is an unusual track. It seems to be the fan pick, largely due to a verse with a certain swagger and attitude, but for some reason I am just not warming to it. Perhaps I was affected by the demo leaks from the last few years and decided I had no great interest in the track.
The first ballad of the release is the decidedly 70s sounding Street Of Dreams. Mixing November Rain with Axl's known love of Wings and Paul McCartney, the lead vocal is definitely something fresh and interesting. The piano and acoustic guitars help paint a picture, but this song is all about Axl and his passionate delivery. I wasn't sure what to make of the track to start with and perhaps I'm still not sure. But it is an epic piece of music crammed into just 5 minutes. Changing tempos, orchestration, guitar work reminiscent of Slash and the whole 70s pomp element is certainly a lot to absorb. I would have liked to have herd this song pushed even further into 7 or 8 minutes and let Axl's ideas fully flourish.
If The World is another truly curious piece of music, with an album hip hop beat driving orchestration and a fairly whiney vocal. There is no real chorus and to me the song sums up just about everything traditional fans might hate about this album.
There Was A Time flows from the last song with another programmed beat kicking things along. The nearly 7 minute track is driven by a much harder edge guitar sound and further orchestration. The verse and general song structure is interesting and this is definitely a worthy epic. The closing couple of minutes of musical intensity are the strongest part.
Catcher In The Rye is another big rock track that is part ballad, part frenzied guitar epic, with both parts featuring a healthy dose of piano. Again, no huge or definitive chorus, but some interesting musical decisions that hold interest while getting to know the album, but perhaps not for a long time after.
Scraped is a busy, guitar fueled rocker and at 3:30 is the shortest track on the album. Again, no big chorus or defining moment, I feel as if this track comes and goes without making a mark.
Riad N' The Bedouins has an intensely moody intro filled with effects, before an angry vocal and big riff take hold. Once again the chorus is a change of pace within the song rather than a defined riff or lyric hook. That's symptomatic of the whole album and it is a style that some are really not going to like.
The 6 minute moody Sorry is a big rock ballad with a dark heart and its own individual personality within the greater album. Once again, I'm not sure I'll be listening to the song for any length of time once this review is done.
I.R.S. is one of the more legendary tracks of the album, with demo versions leaking early in the game. I like the track and the lyric cuts deep.
The big rock ballad Madagascar kicks off with an epic feel, hinting of what might be to come. But while the song does build and feature more orchestration and multiple layers of instrumentation, I don't find myself warming to the track. And the historic spoken word drop-ins mid-track doesn't add anything to it. And did we really need to hear the line "failure to communicate" yet again?
This I Love has been touted as the ballad of the album. A heartfelt piano ballad with a powerful and emotional lyric and vocal from Axl. And yeah, it is good for sure. The orchestration is immense and the vocal something we haven't heard from Axl before. Tasteful guitar solos add atmosphere rather than derailing the intent of the song.
Prostitute is an interesting closer with several different approaches during the 6 minute stay. There an underlying moodiness to the track and some interesting instrumentation again (as there is throughout the album) and generally speaking the melodies within the song demand repeat listens.
The Bottom Line
So…Chinese Democracy is a solid album. But is "solid" a pass mark for an album with such mythical status? I'll let the masses decide that.
There are a couple of classics here and a few fillers also. It is better than I expected for sure, but how does any record possibly live up to the hype of years worth of fan anticipation. In many ways the myth and legend of Chinese Democracy has proved to be greater than the actual release, which is probably the least surprising element of this whole crazy chapter of rock n roll history.
One way or the other, for better or worse, this album will certainly be remembered.
Discography / Previously Reviewed
· Appetite For Destruction
· Use Your Illusion 1 & 2
· Spagetti Incident
· Chinese Democracy

Line Up:
Too many to possibly mention!
Essential For Fans Of:
· Axl Rose
Track Listing
· Chinese Democracy
· Shackler's Revenge *
· Better
· Street Of Dreams *
· If The World
· There Was A Time *
· Catcher In The Rye
· Scraped
· Riad N' The Bedouins
· Sorry
· I.R.S. *
· Madagascar
· This I Love *
· Prostitute

--*Best Tracks


02/12/09: DJ - djpstar69@gmail.com
Rating: 80
Why 80% you may ask................do you remember and album called "Appetitie For Destruction?" That qusetion is also the answer......nuff said.This is not a Guns & Roses album.The Guns are missing aand there's only one rose.If this was released as an Axl Rose solo album, I would have given it a much higher rating.The dude signs his ass off on this release and the songs are pretty much what you'd expect from him..........over the top,over produced, too many musicians,too many mood swings in the melodies.nothing wrong with that unless you're in a bombastic prog band trying to be Queen.I just want to hear GNR as the sleazy,boisterous,rude,whisky guzzling ,fuel driven freight train they once were....with all the original members.Wishful thinking I guess but I can't call this a GNR album for the obvious reasons.It's a very excellent Axl Rose solo album

02/05/09: RockMan - g@g.com
Rating: 0
I agree....suuuucks. If the best you have is "Better" where the singer is out of tune a large part of the time, you're in trouble. Just a mess.

25/04/09: Joe - srt08joe@yahoo.com
Rating: 49
Ever since Appetite, I so wanted to like GNR. Some of the songs were very good, but I never could find myself going nuts over GNR. Maybe it was that they destroyed themselves and were really just assholes to just about everybody they came in contact with. Or maybe it was the decline in the overall quality of their records after Appetite. Either way, I didn't miss them when they were gone.

So after 15 years, this is the best Axl can come up with? There is nothing special about this record. What he should've done was put out a real GNR record like Appetite, a raw, in-your-face rock/metal record to bring people back. This is basically an Axl solo record. Sure, this will probably reach a new generation of listeners, but those of us who went through high school on Appetite will find very little to like about Democracy.

08/03/09: Dundee - Selfdu@hotmail.com
Rating: 0
Sounds like a drunk sheep singing songs made with a 10p computerprogram. This is this years worst album. Even TNT's Atlantis sounds amazing good compared to this crap.

07/02/09: Dave - jrnyfan_99@yahoo.com
Rating: 88
It's good. It's not great in my opinion, but it's strong. I like that there's a lot on the record, it's diverse and Axl isn't just rehashing Appetite. But in the same breath, it's definitely not as good as Appetite. It was worth the $10, but not worth the 15 year wait.
Can we just get this over with and move on to the reunion now please?

23/01/09: danimal - thenuge1@aol.com
Rating: 100
Hands down the best album of 2008. Can't remember when I heard a record with this many guitar solos. Buckethead is brillant throughout. His songs and solos (which are the majority of solos) are the highlights, Axl voice is amazing! The songs are epic, like mini-stories, and the whole record just jams from beginning to end. Can't believe this is getting crapped on, an awesome guitar album, and nothing like the old guns.

04/01/09: Walk In The Shadows - asa@cubedsquared.com
Rating: 95
The fact that this sounds almost nothing like Appetite era GnR makes it much more impressive to me. If people would give this thing a chance (people who like rock music that's got some other influences) they'd surely agree that this is a great album. I never previously loved GnR personally. I LOVE this album.

Fave tracks are Better, Street of Dreams, If The World, Catcher In The Rye, Sorry, IRS, This I Love and Prostitute.

Sorry. I left a couple songs out....

01/01/09: Daniel - DRock1779@gmail.com
Rating: 97
This was an album that I personally have waited close to half my life for and learned a long time ago wasn't going to be what I initially expected, only to then realize that it was exactly what I was expecting.

I knew from moment one that I didn't want another appetite from axl, the perfected that type of record the first time and I didn't see any reason to do it again anymore than he does. What I wanted was simpy a better version of the Illusion records, all the great stuff without the excess. I wanted a new Don't Cry, a new You Could Be Mine, and a new Estranged, and I wanted them without having to bother with stuff like My World or Dead Horse. Essentially I got my wish.

The Title track is pretty awesome, and sounds much better than the leaked versions, the vocals especially, the song is positioned and introed as a new Welcome to the Jungle, but it would have been better off somewhere else where it could avoid comparisons of that sort.

Shackler's Revenge took some time to get into and does have a little too much of the industrial flavor that was found on 1999's Oh My God. But the guitar solo sounds inhuman and the chorus manages to sound uplifting and important without saying anything which is impressive to me.

Better was the song I thought would be the best of the album because I simply thought it was that good, and it is that good. but its not the best song on the album, its the most pop friendly I think, and the best choice for the leadoff single

Street of Dreams is amazing and might the the best song on the album it has the epicness of Estranged without all of the excess time to develop it, could be a good choice as a 3rd single because its really a November Rain designed for radio because its short enough to air without being cut down

If The World is probably my third least favorite song on the album, but thats not because its bad, I like the song a lot and respect the hell out of Axl for doing something that different that well, its just not my cup of tea as they say, the hip hop beat is kinda cool and it has a killer groove and good lyric too, just the wrong tempo for my taste.

There Was A Time is a song I had heard early and originally didn't like but the final version has a great mix and better vocal, not one that you will love instantly because of its length and mood, but it grows on you and is epic in its own way.

Catcher In The Rye is the one song on the album that I don't really get the point of, I am not sure what Axl was going for here at all and it misses to me, its not a great rocker, its not a great ballad, and if there is a message I missed it. The worst part about this song is that a lot of the parts seem recycled from various tracks of the Illusion albums, which at first seems helpful because it comes across as familiar, but in reality makes the song seem boring very quickly.

Scrapped kicks it up a notch or three and in style with a cool vocal intro and great lyrics, the chorus is a little shallow but fits in well with the verse, and the riffing is hard charging and fun, a song that the more I listen to the more I love

Riad N' The Bedouins to me is the worst song on the record and the one I'd like to see replaced the most, which is odd because my biggest complaint is that the album is one rocker short and this is definately a rocker, but its just not that good, Axl is speaking of the Bedouins plight and how he doesn't care, and quite frankly I don't either, but unlike him I don't think it makes me crazy I think it makes me normal as this song seems to have no point to it. Knowing that Axl has 2 more albums in store that tie into this one gives me hope that years (decades?) down the road I will be able to look fondly at the track and like it more but until then its the only track I can say is actually bad

Sorry however is awesome and while at first I simply thought it was good, I am now considering that this might be the best track of the album, its epic and spooky and heartfelt and powerful and rocking and emotional all at the same time.

I.R.S is a rocking song in a more classic vein and has Axl doing what he's known for doing best, being pissed off about something and making it known via song. To me this is the Get In The Ring for romantic relationships, and a much better song too.

Madagascar is a great piece of music with a good lyric, but to me the vocal overdub session that takes the spot where the main solo is almost kills the song, almost. I think I get what Axl was trying to accomplish, but I think the song would have been better suited if that section was either at the beginning or the end, rather than the middle because it drags the song down, in fact I think that had it been at the end and this song closed the album it would have worked much better.

This I Love is simply one of the most beautiful things I have ever heard and I will leave it at that because words don't do this ballad justice

Prostitute is very interesting and seems to be almost a mini version of the album all by itself I again think there is a mistake here in that the overly upbeat ending to the track is similar to what was on Appetite but the song is pretty good

Overall the album is stellar, not perfect and not quite living up to the hype but its stellar nonetheless. I think that replacing Catcher with another rocker, replacing Rhiad with something better, and remixing Madagascar would have put this over the top. But thats my vision, what we got was Axls and quite frankly I enjoyed this album overall more than any that GNR have released before, and certainly more than what Axls former bandmates have done without him, so at the very least, even if he didn't win the world over here, he won the arguement of what direction the band needed to take...its just a shame that the album suffers from how long it took him to get there, and how many abandonded him on his journey.

25/12/08: DCK - gregers_gram@yahoo.no
Rating: 90
Big GNR fan, big believer in Axl and the band. Had great hopes for what Tommy and Robin could deliver in songs. They've had 10 years in this band afterall.

The songs are good and well produced. However, what's with the booklet errors?

Grand epic songs. This I Love is the masterpiece every GNR fan expected it to be. Buckethead is all over the album. The Bucket solo on TWAT must be, hands down, the BEST solo ever written for GNR.

Never cared for Street of Dreams, it's a poor mans Don't Cry. Shackler's Revenge is interesting but loose me a little on the high pitched chorus. Sorry is bloody amazing. Madagascar always sounded better on those live bootlegs from 2002 for some odd reason. It never attracted me to a great extent on the album. The song Chinese Democracy went from being a mediocre song to a pretty kick ass little ditty. Better is always the fan fave, great song.

What this album lacks is the last punch. The last rock anthem to kill all the negative crap going on. It lacks the specific riffs. Very surprised to not see Robin Finck come up with one or two.

However, more is to come. Maybe even 2009

24/12/08: DirtyPennyIowa - IowaSleezeStreetTeam@hotmail.com
Rating: 50
So so album. maybe the hype killed it for me. Way overproduced. Too many instruments/computers that are not rock related.

23/12/08: michael grayson - mikkygray2@hotmail.com
Rating: 98
Well first of all thank god i waited for this release since 17 years im listening to Guns n roses since the beginning,when the lllusions albums came out i was 17 and today im 34 and still excited about it.Slash,Izzy,Duff and Steven may have gone altough Axl Rose proved he is a genius songs such as "chinese democracy","shacklers revenge" and "rhiad and the bedouins" are really kick ass heavy songs while "scraped" could have been on their debut "appetite for destruction" while "t.W.A.T" ,"street of dreams" and "this i love"(originally recorded in 1993) are beautiful ballads.The album is probably the darkest album GNR has ever recorded however the album needs a couple of listens to get into it.The new members are playing perfectly their roles.I even bought the limited edition box ,just to feel that im still a nr 1 fan of GNR and Axl Rose.

23/12/08: Dave - djm123@mindspring.com
Rating: 100
I bought this cd when I was in Israel, so when I 1st popped it in the rental car, i was really disapointed.
I had it in my head that this was a cd that was going to crush my face and blow out my ear drums. So Driving around, I listened to this multiple times and learned that this is one of those "GROW ON YOU" type cds which I love.

This is a great cd that provides alot of depth in sound and in content. I hope the next cd doesn't take as long to come out.

I think people need to face it that GnR is a brand name and like it or not, Axl owns it. He can do what the fuck he wants with it. If I had the chance to speak with Axl, I would tell him thanks for Art and I really enjoy it.
Thanks!

22/12/08: Marc Vanway - vanway@hotmail.com
Rating: 100
You can arguee a lot of things: Whether it is or is not a GNR album. Whether it was worth it so many years of waiting. If you ask me, the reply to those 2 questions is NO. But, at the same time, you can't arguee that this is a complete Masterpiece, from start to finish. In a world where everything sounds exactly the same, Axl managed to release something completely different from the rest, and with a bunch of songs that are at the same level than the old GNR. Sincerely, this is a buy or die!

22/12/08: gnr - m@yahoo.bg
Rating: 100
masterpiece. who the f*** cares if it's guns record or not. it's just a masterpiece record. but you have to listen to 10 or more times to understand it. it's not a hit record album. the re are 3 albums that worth for the last 2 years guns,judaspriest i eagles

21/12/08: LoneRager - mixaplic@yahoo.com
Rating: 85
I hated the demos I heard in 2000 but Axl's added a few new tracks and done some more work on it, and it's not all that bad. "Chinese Democracy" starts the record off with a bang and I'm excited...until "Shackler's Revenge" begins (Can't say amything good don't say anything). "Better" is just that, not a great track but I've heard worse. "Street Of Dreams" is actually not a bad track. It's hard to hear myself saying that about Guns, but it can be said about most of the record. "If The World" is IMO the best track on the record, even if it is Shaft meets Stevie Wonder meets Metal. It and the title track have what you've come to expect from G & R but the album as a whole is just okay. IMO, there aren't enough rockers..yet, the powers of rock compelled me to buy it...lol

21/12/08: Mike Allen - feskchamp@yahoo.com
Rating: 100
This album, from start to finish, is a complete masterpiece. I now understand why it took so long for AXL to release this album. It's evident that the album was recorded over 17 years. You hear different periods of time throughout the release. In particular, I love the album when it rocks.

But to me, what's most cool about the album is when Axl emits an R&B Groove on the song, IF THE WORLD. . Talk about taking a chance. He left himself open to the rednecks of the world to say, "What a wimp, this ain't no Guns and Roses Album." Well, so what? It's a great work of art. And "If The World" is Axl proving that he's much more than just a rock singer. He's a complete singer.

I must admit, I hated Axl Rose's singing up to this point. I got so tired of the Ai ee Ai ee Ai thing he did, that his voice and style repulsed me.

I bought Chinese Democracy so that I could have one more reason to think Axl is a complete flop and then be able, with an educated ear, to rip him apart. .

From the opening riff on Chinese Democracy. . .I ate humble pie. I applaude Axl for putting together such a great work of art and branching out. Vocally, he's reinvented himself and with this release, he's NO DOUBT established one fact that I thought I'd never say about Axl. He is truly one of the greatest rock singers ever.

So what if it doesn't sound like "Old GNR"? I never liked that sound much anyway, with the exception of Slash's guitar, I never thought the band was worthy of any acclaim. But with Chinese Democracy, now we've got something worthy of discussion and worth listening to. . THUMBS UP for Chinese Democracy.

20/12/08: Wardy - micktward@internode.on.net
Rating: 93
While on one hand this is no classic nor is it easily digestible or instant, in its very own weird and whacky way, Chinese Democracy is quite the album!

Never being one for industrial I kinda dig the fact that very sound is hidden behind the many walls of noise here and lyrically while it’s up and down, when this funny little man sings about matters of the heart, my God – by golly does he get it! Never one for overkill, I’m enjoying the massive sound of this thing, and to hell with overproduction, that just adds to the overall appeal about this album – it’s unique... unusual... different!

First single Better grooves its way in without too much effort, and cuts such as Shackler’s Revenge and Scrapped have some fantastic guitar riffs and are just too strong to poke fun at. IRS is cool, the title track ain’t bad, and There Was A Time is truly a masterpiece but hell if I can explain why… it just is! And This I Love is hands down one of the most unique love songs to come outta hard rock since Saigon Kick were walking a similar line back in their heyday! If The World sounds like it was born from one too many acid trips (fact is it probably was!) and Sorry is Queensryche at their slow plodding Pink Floyd best! In fact this one’s pretty much got everything… it rocks it rolls it’s full of thunder, it has soft parts and full blown racket, weirdness and calm… not to mention outta 14 songs there’s only a few that could be called borderline filler and only if you were really wanting to find some!

On a down side the suggestion that Chinese Democracy was still rushed is unforgivable - the bleeps evident in second verse of Scraped is one of a couple moments that do indeed suggest this and one can only shake their head... and the inner sleeve artwork and contents are rather lame considering the time spent on this album... sweet cover art though!

Still, this is one of the coolest albums I've heard in years and trust me the fact that I of all people am of that opinion has floored me but to be honest I'm starting to see the genius of this guy everyone claimed they'd been seeing since Illusions... I didn't care much for this band back then when for the most part their music was easy dining, so expectations for this one to suck be damned, I stand converted!

Great great album!

20/12/08: Pam - pboz@hotmail.com
Rating: 85
When it rocks, it's pretty good. When it's not, which is often, it's not terrible. True, it should've been an Axl Rose solo disc but once you get over the psychological GnR hang-up, it's a decent listening experience. Probably one of the "cleanest" sounding rock albums that I've heard in years. It's definitely a headphones-worthy cd.

20/12/08: thechamp - idontwantspam@anytime.com
Rating: 98
I wish people could get over the fact that it is different than Appetite. No one seems to have a problem with Harem Scarem changing it up, they are gods and geniuses. Anyone else try and they get ridiculed and spat on. Appetite was great, but Axl isnt out to recreate it, and has no desire to. Slash for all his efforts can't recreate it, and he wants to. Let it go and appreciate new music for what it is, not what one thinks it should be. I will get off my soap box...
I think this album is fantastic. There are multiple musical influences here from Pink Floyd to Queen, and even a hint of Broadway here. The later half of the album is more melodic and slower paced but everything sounds great. I have been listening to it non stop since I bought it in Nov. If you can wrap your mind around the fact that it isnt a repeat of Appetite, and that artists can change and evolve, you will find some awesome music on this cd.

20/12/08: Jeff - mcmack2501@yahoo.com
Rating: 85
There are two ways to approach this album from a critical standpoint. One could dissect it from the standpoint of being 14 (or whatever) years in the making and the millions of dollars spent making it. And that would be fair. Or one could critique it as any other album by any other artist, simply as a collection of songs. Difficult to do in this case, I’ll concede, but I believe it is the fairer, more objective way to approach it. No album this long and expensive in the making could ever live up to the expectations that grew with each passing year…or lineup change…or song leak…or you name it. So, if judged on those heaping expectations, the album cannot be judged on its own merits.

The most obvious statement about this album is that this is not your 5-guys-living-on-the-streets-of-Los Angeles Guns n’ Roses. But, then again, neither was the band who made the Use Your Illusion albums. The eccentricity afforded by his fame and fortune has given Axl Rose a grandiose vision of the music he seeks to create. And this is a grandiose effort.

I honestly don’t know if I expected to like this album, because I really wasn’t sure what to expect. I didn’t hear any the leaks and all I had heard were a live performance of Madagascar and the streaming of the title track a few days prior to the release. Not enough to really base an opinion on. Upon the first couple listens, the screeching got to me a little bit, but this has lessened over time as the songs themselves have sunk in. It isn’t an instant grabber for many of the reasons Andrew mentioned in his review, but now that I’ve had it for almost a month I rate it a very solid effort one that I expect to be listening to for quite awhile.

I’m particularly drawn to the ballads, of which there are several. In my car on the way to/from work, I don’t have time for the whole CD so I find myself shuffling through the ballads. Not a weak one in the bunch, in my opinion.

I can’t wait for the next GNR release!!! Kidding.

20/12/08: Jeff Maher - darthmaher@yahoo.com
Rating: 88
As a Guns N Roses album, I give it a thumbs down. However, as an Axl Rose solo album (which is kind of what it is), it's not a bad album at all.

Non of the tracks actually stand out though. I can only recall a few off the top of my head, but with more listens, I'll probably recall more.

It makes for some great background music.

20/12/08: Panagiotis - panline9@yahoo.gr
Rating: 0
A couple of decent songs but nothing else than that..This isn't G'N'R.This is Axl's solo record..In a year with so many grat hard rock releases he managed to put out this...thing...Too bad, just too bad.

20/12/08: Chris Glenn - crazystix@hotmail.com
Rating: 85
This CD is actually much better than I was anticipating. I really like it and have listened to it several times now. While it's not up there with Appetite, I do like it as much or more than the Illusion albums, and it's certainly better than most stuff put out these days. Favorite tracks are Better and Chinese Democracy. Wish they'd get the original band back together for a reunion tour...

20/12/08: NunYoBusiness - nun_yo_business_1@yahoo.com
Rating: 40
The new "Just Roses" Cd is ok if you don't think of it as a G N' R release, when you have some songs where five different guitarists contribute to a song it's hard not to think of it as anything other than "Just Roses". Having been alive way before they released their (his) last CD of originals, I was willing to give this a spin and not try to compare it to the days of old. After the first spin I was like "WTF" was that, some of the songs started and stopped and went to a new track and sounded like it was just a continuation of the last one. The last half of the disc was way to mellow, and reminded me that hey this isn't really G N' R. If someone other than Axl had been there to add their 2 cents who knows what might of been. The week this CD was released it was #3, WOW 17 years without NEW tunes and you only muster a #3 spot on the charts. I wasn't really surprised as most of the music buying people (kids) were not even born when they unleashed the double dose of UYI I & II. Just looking at the charts these days should make any adult depressed, why is it that we adults can't get record companies to release good music for us. This CD is one of the reasons, if you are going to attach the name G N' R to a band you could at least stay true to what the band stood for. The sound on this CD is all over the map with not one track standing out as the centerpiece or a coherant direction. One can only hope that the rumours out there might be true and that the next time a new CD is released it won't be "Just Roses"

20/12/08: PW - pw@undisclosed.com
Rating: 75
The title track starts the album off pretty well, but then it kind of goes downhill from there. Unfortunately after a few songs I just want to turn it off as it really gets annoying. Some of the songs are just plain dull and could have been written by anyone, just not individual enough. Sorry.

19/12/08: born_to_run - starchild_70@online.de
Rating: 0
Ladies and gentlemen: The worst record of all time!

19/12/08: Steve - roknroseville@yahoo.com
Rating: 85
Wow , where do i start?
There;s so much going on here..
This cd has great moments & some dull moments also.
Axel can sing no doubt But the songs are way 2 long..
My favorites are better & there was a time 4 now..
Some of the ballads sound similar & i get them confused w/ each other.


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