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BST 2023 – Guns 'N’ Roses, The Pretenders, The Darkness

Artist: Guns 'N’ Roses, The Pretenders, The Darkness

Venue: London: Hyde Park

Date: 30 June 2023

Tonight’s show was simply excellent.

Axl Rose
Photos: Guilherme Nunes Cunha Neto

After the breathtaking exploits of P!NK on Saturday, less than a week later I was on my way back to BST for the second of three reviews this year. The second day had more of a Rock and Metal line-up with a number of artists that have featured within the pages of Fireworks. The headliners tonight were the legendary Guns N’ Roses, a band I will confess I have never seen live before. That decision has always been made based on financial or scheduling matters rather than a lack of interest in the band. Like many, I remember the first time I heard ‘Appetite For Destruction’ back in the late-eighties and the impact it had on me. The story of Guns N’ Roses since that meteoric rise to fame is a long and sometimes difficult one. I’ve heard countless horror stories about the band’s touring exploits, and that’s long before the issues within the band and around the band members themselves. Whether it is a case of intense hellraisers just getting too old for all that shit (to paraphrase Murtaugh from ‘Lethal Weapon’) or maturity finally taking hold, those days appear to be firmly in the rearview mirror, and based on tonight’s show, G N’R are all the better for it.

As was the case last week and will be next weekend, the show took place in the huge BST venue within Hyde Park. I won’t repeat explaining what a wonderful series of shows the BST concerts are. If you are unfamiliar with the event, you can check out the summary in the first few paragraphs of my P!NK review last week. While the venue and layout may have been the same, the weather was vastly different… as was the crowd (both in terms of the makeup and their approach). After last weekend’s scorching temperatures and intense sunshine, the weather for today was overcast with thick cloud cover and even a couple of late-afternoon showers. I have been to more outdoor shows than I can count since I first saw Bryan Adams at the Milton Keynes Bowl in 1991, and I am pleased to say this was only the third time there was anything resembling rain. It didn’t last long, wasn’t overly heavy and only happened in a few short bursts. In all those years, the only truly awful downpour I’ve experienced was during the afternoon for The Rolling Stones’ ‘Voodoo Lounge’ Wembley show in 1995; not a bad record for 22-plus years. It certainly didn’t spoil my day, and once it drifted away, off came the rain jacket and it stayed in the bag for the rest of the day.

My routine is always pretty much the same when I arrive at BST. Once inside the festival area, I have a quick stroll, to see if anything is different and to check out the merch. I often decide before attending whether I will pick up a t-shirt, but it is always good to have a nosey at the choices in case one stands out and has to be purchased. Following some food and a couple of drinks, it was off to the concert area.

The opening act on The Great Oak Stage were Larkin Poe. We reviewed their ‘Self Made Man’ and ‘Kindred Spirits’ albums back in 2020, and I very much liked what I heard (sadly, we didn’t get their most recent 2022 offering, ‘Blood Harmony’, for review). Their brand of Contemporary Blues with a Southern/Country twist stuck with me and I was delighted when I saw they were on the bill for today. The band originally come from Georgia but are now based in Nashville, and core is made up of sisters Rebecca Lovell (vocals, guitar) and Megan Lovell (harmony vocals, lap steel guitar, which she had on a strap around her neck). Aside from the significantly different weather, what was also noticeable was the lack of people in the audience for Larkin Poe. When I strolled in for GAYLE last week, it was difficult to find much room any closer than the back of the two towers. This time, I was able to get some way in front of them with ease, which added an extra element of joy to be able to get closer to the action. For those who chose to arrive later, maybe somewhat understandable on a Friday, or stay in the concession area, you missed one heck of a performance. They opened with ‘Strike Gold’ and it gave everyone a great insight into what they were all about. There was a thick guitar riff that was given a delicious Southern slant by the lap steel. R. Lovell’s vocals were particularly clear and the two sisters delivered an ear-catching pair of solos. ‘Kick The Blues’ also had solid vocals and a rather nice lap steel solo. I remembered thinking to myself, “Where else do you hear that outside of Country Music these days?” R. Lovell encouraged a clap along at the start of ‘Summertime Sunset’ and she got a good reaction from the limited numbers that were present. It was a slower track with more of a growl-like vocal and a riff that was dirtier than a coal miner at the end of his shift (the hooker line I originally came up with simply can’t be put in print). At this point, R. Lovell introduced the other two band members, which I believe were Ben Satterlee on drums and Tarka Layman on bass. The sisters then dipped into cover territory with a rendition of “Blues Legend” Son House’s ‘Preachin’ Blues’. The shiver-inducing lap steel intro was matched by a bombastic six-string riff over the top. The sisters may have been preaching the Blues, but even the minister would have approved of that grooving guitar action. As I looked around me, it seemed Larkin Poe were easily truly pleasing the crowd, and ‘Bad Spell’ had vocals that were as alluring as anything in their set. The guitar and lap steel had another solo duel before the crowd were told to get their hands up. One of my favourites in their eight-song set was ‘Wanted Woman’. There was a Delta Blues/ZZ Top feel to it with harmony vocals and a riff so filthy it would have appalled/offend Mary Whitehouse and ended up on her banned list. As the song progressed, I suddenly had images of Tito & Tarantula in the Titty Twister during ‘From Dusk To Dawn’. All we needed was Salma Hayek strutting out on stage. AC/DC had a bit more of a ballsy riff to it and a touch more bounce, but it had a similar feel. They closed out their set with ‘Bolt Cutters & The Family Name’ with its big, “bad-ass” sleazy riff and bounding rhythm. It was tough not to get the hands up and clap along, and it proved to be a fine end to their regretfully short slot. I can’t speak for anyone else, but Larkin Poe bowled me over. I was hoping to come away with my expectation met and they truly impressed. If you like a bit of Blues/Southern Rock with some bite and kick, then check out the group from Nashville as I think you’ll be impressed.

A few days before the show, I got the set times and this confirmed that Guns N’ Roses would be doing a three-hour set, which meant the usual fifty-minute (and often more) gaps between acts on the main stage would have to be condensed. Due to that, the time to get over to the Rainbow Stage to see some of the other acts would entail missing chunks of acts on the main stage (even before you take into account time for food, drink and the toilet). With that in mind, despite wanting to catch at least Dirty Honey and The Dust Coda elsewhere across the festival, I decided to remain in front of The Great Oak Stage for the duration of the day. I would like to offer my apologies to the other acts for not being able to cover them.

I happen to love The Darkness, but I am more than aware they are not everyone’s cup of tea. The first time I saw them was when they supported Def Leppard back in 2003 (how the hell was that twenty years ago?!?!?!) and as much as my group all enjoyed the Leps, we spent much of our journey home talking about the bonkers support act – The Darkness (the pink leotard and Justin Hawkins playing guitar on a bouncer’s shoulders as he walked through the crowd being just two moments). I have their debut album and have seen them a few times since, but album-wise, I kind of lost touch. However, you always know you will have a lot of fun when you see them on stage, be it as headliners or support (my last time was when they supported Toto a few years back). With a fitting bagpipes/choral intro, plus a bit of pyro, J. Hawkins and the guys bounced on stage and tore into an early favourite with ‘Growing On Me’. I don’t mind admitting I was doing my best “tight trousers” singing impression as were plenty of those who’d chosen to see them. I think that might explain why I couldn’t talk for two days after the show. There was a muted clap along, but those who were fans did their best to make up for it. It was then cowbell time – to which I responded, “All hail the cowbell” to several thumbs up) – for the title-track of the latest album, ‘Motorheart’. It didn’t get the same response, and I can only assume because it wasn’t off ‘Permission To Land’. The dropped back another album for ‘Heart Explodes’ from ‘Easter Is Cancelled’. The double drum beat got the hands up and the cool riff saw the heads bobbing. The echoed solo was rather effective, and then J. Hawkins took over with a massive Falsetto wail that likely deafened bats and gave the crowd a rather saucy butt wiggle. For all the over-the-top stuff and usual bad language, J. Hawkins does sound rather posh at times when he talks. That quickly slipped when a fan asked for a guitar pick and was told, “No, fucking buy one!” They delivered a cut from ‘Pinewood Smile’ with ‘Solid Gold’ and J. Hawkins strutted around the whole stage (shirt-less by now), which also had another Falsetto scream and rip-roaring solo; the pyros made it smell like someone was having a BBQ from where I was stood. They took it down a notch for ‘Love Is Only A Feeling’ and the return to ‘Permission…’ gave the crowd an injection of energy, and at the end J. Hawkins handed the aforementioned fan a plectrum. As if to start building up his voice, he increased the “twisted balls” vocal approach for ‘Japanese Prisoner Of Love’. Despite being from ‘Pinewood…’, this seemed better known by the audience than the previous offering from that album. His helium-like, bat-bothering vocals went to another level when they erupted into ‘Get Your Hands Off My Woman’, and those around me took great delight in roaring out the profanity filled lyrics. It all got a bit silly (in a good way) at this stage. The elongated “mother fucker” Hawkins/crowd moment was described by the singer as “sounding like gas escaping.” It was at this point that the gentleman who’d asked for the plectrum was singled out and told, “This is your moment” by J. Hawkins. The crowd chanted his name, and he was given a mic and told to match the singer, a bit unfair I feel for a pitch that high, but the man did well. In jest, J. Hawkins confirmed the pit between the stage and audience was a “Talent Moat.” He then asked the audience to “put your fucking hands in the air if you want to hear the Christmas song?” I love ‘Christmas Time (Don’t Let The Bells End)’ and agreed wholeheartedly with the unanimous answer; The Darkness duly obliged with a shortened guitar/vocals only rendition. With the set almost over, the closing number was obvious to everyone in front of the stage. Having egged the audience to dance and bounce, that well-known riff slithered out of the speakers. ‘I Believe In A Thing Called Love’ was as entertaining as always, with J. Hawkins playing up to the fans. It was a sparkly finish to a set that all went up in planned smoke at the end with pyros erupting from the stage. For the most part, you either like/love or loathe The Darkness. I happen to sit in the former camp and had a blast during their set. It also looked like J. Hawkins was having a lot of fun on stage with plenty of laughter and smiles. My only disappointment was the lack of ‘One Way Ticket To Hell And Back’, but in a short support set like this, you can’t have everything. They were as much fun as ever and I hope to catch a headline set later this year when they tour to support the 20th anniversary of ‘Permission…’

Just before The Pretenders were due on stage, the rain finally made itself felt. It was just a bit of drizzle at first, but then got a lot heavier. I can’t speak for anyone else, but it didn’t dampen my mood at all, even if I did have to drag out the ol’ rain coat, because I had been looking forward to seeing The Pretenders all day. They are a Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame act and one of the more legendary female-fronted groups I’d never seen live.

I missed some of their opener, ‘Losing My Sense Of Taste’, while getting myself covered up, but despite my attention being temporarily drawn elsewhere, you couldn’t miss the distinctive voice of Chrissie Hynde purring out of the speakers. Never one to shy away from speaking about important matters, Hynde referenced the wealthy during ‘Turf Account Daddy’, which had a rocking bass/guitar riff that quickly had my foot tapping. Visually, Hynde looked casually cool in a black t-shirt, jeans and knee-high boots with a relaxed, almost effortless presence while she sang. What was disappointing was the lack of crowd for a group of this calibre. I am sure the rain put a few off, but there were clearly plenty of people in the venue judging by the crowds around the various food & drink stands. The echoed guitar of ‘Kid’ harked back to music from a different era (their first album in 1979) and hearing Hynde belt out the lyrics was like stepping into a little time machine. She dedicated ‘Time The Avenger’ to Axl Rose (with a rather cheeky smile and tongue poke after she said it) and it was another old-school offering with the guitar riff reminding me of another well-known band from that time – The Cult. The lead guitarist seemed to have a ball in his solos and he had a very physical edge to his playing with lots of shapes and facial expressions. It got a nice cheer from the crowd, who’d finally started to funnel in now the rain had ceased. Unlike some of the other acts I’d seen on this year’s main stage, The Pretenders kept it extremely simple with a single backdrop on the big screen and the band just playing their songs. ‘Talk Of The Town’ was a big hit for them back in the eighties, and it saw Hynde occasionally leaning back with her guitar as she strummed away. They opened ‘Middle Of The Road’ with a short drum solo moment for the sticksman before the bassist and guitarist added some “whoo-hoo” shouts. Hynde made a minor attempt to get the crowd swaying mid-song, then brought out the harmonica for a little additional embellishment for the end of the song. Much like the cowbell, you can’t neat a bit of mouth organ. The Pretenders had been around a while by the time of my earliest memories of music, but they still have a few songs that can whisk me back to an earlier part of my life. Around the middle of the set, one of those made an appearance. The song in question was written by an old friend of Hynde, Meg Keene, who she explained had died the year before. That song is ‘Hymn To Her’. As Hynde opened sang the words, I closed my eyes and I was back in my old bedroom, listening to the song on my old ‘Now That’s What I Call Music 9’. I remembered the young me, laying on my bed, listening to some of the mellower songs in my tape collection, and this was one of them. Looking back now, I wonder if that injection of nostalgia was the starting point for a reaction I will include later on. A few of the audience joined me in singing the lyrics, but not as many as I expected, which felt a little strange for a band that should have appealed to a late-eighties audience. ‘Back On The Chain Gang’ saw the band add in some fun “Oooo… aaaa” chants which reminded me of something else, but I couldn’t recall what it was. Having dedicated it to Slash, the bouncy opening riff of ‘Thumbelina’ saw Hynde grooving with her guitarist mid-stage and it quickly developed into a track that had a bit of a sixties feel about it. Her fellow six-stringer had his knees bent as he shuffled and bobbed during a ripping solo before he joined Hynde back in the middle of the stage; he also tore it up at the end of the show to smiles and nods from Hynde. That one got a bit more of a response from the crowd. The chunkier riff of ‘Let The Sun Come In’ saw the audience beginning to slowly fill up the crowd, and they seemed to enjoy the song’s brisk solo. Following ‘Junkie Walk’, it was time for another offering that many should have known due to its success in the eighties, ‘Don’t Get Me Wrong’, and it definitely put a little more bounce into the crowd with its swaying/shuffling beat. Having asked if everyone wanted a dance, she read out a sign that stated, “Don’t be a prick, give us a pic.” She nonchalantly walked up front and tossed one into the crowd. There was a bit more of a yell from the crowd for this one and Hynde strolled around the stage with a wide smile. With more now watching the show, the volume of those singing the chorus rose somewhat. After the fuzzy sounds of ‘Cuban Slide’ and the eighties-styled Punk Rock of ‘Tattooed Love Boys’, where a beach ball appeared at the front and was tossed around. The penultimate choice was another of the eighties successes, the beautiful ballad that is ‘I’ll Stand By You’. It’s such a powerful song lyrically and one that has a few memories behind it for me, so I was really looking forward to it. Hynde had passed over her guitar and sang this one almost alone at first before the band joined in. This track came out nearly thirty years ago, and though Hynde doesn’t have the strength in her voice that she did back then, this was still a really good rendition. To close out the show, they went all the way back to their 1979 self-titled album for ‘Mystery Achievement’, complete with arms in the air, a punky eighties riff and a belter of a wail from Hynde. I couldn’t claim to be a huge fan of The Pretenders, but I am really pleased to have been able to see them live having had a few of their songs play a part in my younger years. I really appreciated their set, and it’s a little disappointing that the audience wasn’t bigger for them. If I have one criticism, it is that it lacked a little of the pizzazz of other acts I have seen this year at BST. The songs were well played, but Hynde simply said a few words, then they played the song, a few more words, played the song, etc. I wonder if that in part was due to the smaller audience or that style led to a smaller audience? An egg or chicken moment for the philosophical amongst you to ponder! I would happily see them again and am very pleased to have had the chance to finally do so today.

During the shorter than usual break between the final two acts, the audience grew at a rapid rate. Imagine the various scenes from ‘Carry On At Your Convenience’ where they all run off the coach and you will have some idea… only this time they didn’t get back on again. It was great to see so many GN’R t-shirts, some relatively new and many fairly old. As the time to come on approached, there was a hum of expectation. After some of the goings-on over the years, I wonder if part of that was hesitation about whether they’d start on time. No one needed to have worried as they actually started a few minutes early!

Guns N’ Roses performed for around three hours this evening with a mammoth twenty-seven song set. Following a rather colourful video intro (Joel Schumacher would have been proud), one of LA’s most recognisable bands took to the stage. Opening up with ‘It’s So Easy’, GN’R erupted like the large bomb in their intro video. Despite being over sixty, Rose was prowling from one side of the stage to the other. From my vantage point, the sound was good with the music churning away under Rose’s vocals. Now, a lot has been written and said about Rose’s voice, and I will be the first to admit, it wasn’t what it was in his late-eighties/early-nineties heyday… but then very few vocalists of that style and age are (except Bruce Dickinson and maybe Brian Johnson). The voice may have been a touch deeper and his wails may not have had the same lengthy velocity as they once had, but he is still a superb front-man. He still had some of the old ferocity as proved by the screamed “fuck off” in the song’s bridge and the closing “fuckin’ easy” shouts. What no-one could argue about was the quality of axe-work from Slash. The man just smoked up ‘n’ down his fretboard the whole night. The Sleaze made an early entry with a massive Slash opening and the mucky slide guitar riff of ‘Bad Obsession’. That song oozed such dirt that it left a mess on the floor that sent Rose slipping onto his backside… but the quick roll recovery was as good as a sprightly twenty-something. I get the feeling the Axl Rose of many years ago would have been furious, but the Rose of today simply made a joke about it by stating, “I don’t want to jinx it, hopefully, I’ve got all the slip and sliding out of the way.” They chucked in ‘Chinese Democracy’, which seemed to fit Rose’s vocals better, then showed recognition for one of their other projects with ‘Slither’ from Velvet Revolver. With a funky beat and wriggling intro, GN’R went back to that first album for ‘Mr. Brownstone’. Slash’s guitar chugged away as colourful skulls swirled away on the back screen; the solo was just juicy. A return to the ‘Appetite To Destruction’ got the crowd fired up around me and they gave a big roar at the end. My only critique is that maybe Rose should have stuck to the lower range for the higher points as they did stretch his voice. With the crowd simmering, GN’R delivered an ‘Appetite…’ one-two with the bloody marvellous ‘Welcome To The Jungle’. Rose didn’t seem to have much issue with the huge opening wail (or the one at the end of the breakdown)… and the place went nuts. Everyone in front of me had their hands up and were shouting the vocals, which gave Rose a helpful backing group. They slid forward a touch for the punky ‘Reckless Life’ (from ‘G N’ R Lies’), both coming complete with various Slash riff-fests, especially the closing to the latter. The audience roared their appreciation and I am not surprised because from an audio perspective, the guitar sounded crisp and clear throughout the show. The grubby riffed ‘Pretty Tied Up’ came next, and the lower vocals gave Rose a chance to snarl and spit the punchy lyrics. Bringing things right up to the present day, the band decided to play the two studio tracks – ‘Hard Skool’ and ‘Absurd’ – from their most recent EP. They came backed by a great visual show, although the reaction was mixed with many knowing them and cheering loudly, whereas a fair percentage didn’t and they were rather muted. Despite being somewhat slower, the appearance of ‘Estranged’ seemed to reinvigorate the crowd. Rose sounded the best he had so far during the mellower opening and the chunky power chords washed across the whole concert area. The tinkling keys solo from Melissa Reese was so clear that it was almost as if she was playing at the back with us. Between the sea-based visuals and the stormy, dark clouds behind the stage, this number had the perfect aesthetics. Having put the wind back in the crowd’s sail, it was time for one I’d been waiting for. It might be a cover, but I adore their version of ‘Live And Let Die’. Rose gave a tremendous scream as Slash revved up his guitar for the opening. Both Slash and Rose were wandering around the stage, and the crowd relished the chance to sing in unison during the bridge. I myself may have been belting out a few lyrics and this monster got a massive cheer. In a wise move, they chucked in another ‘Appetite…’ gem next with ‘Rocket Queen’. The futuristic video screen images with a cybernetic being were hard to ignore, although it may have been because anything with purple and teal captivates me… I’m like a magpie and shiny objects. Reese, Richard Fortus and Slash all had solo moments in a lengthy version of the song. Towards the end, Slash even took to a voice-box to add to the eighties flavour and the super-imposing of his face over the digital skull on the screen was really effective.

Sandwiched between a cover of UK Subs’ ‘Down On The Farm’ and The Stooges’ ‘T.V. Eye’ (which featured McKagan on vocals) was the electrifying ‘You Could Be Mine’. This was another that send me on a nostalgia trip and it has always been a favourite. That bounding riff and instantly recognisable guitar intro added a petrol to the audience fire, and once again those around me were singing and bouncing. Many long-term fans also added the “ass in the air” part of the live version, but Rose himself omitted it tonight. Slash was back on the voice-box for the raunchy ‘Anything Goes’, which saw Rose giving the crowd a bit of hip-grinding action. By this stage, night was beginning to roll in, and the light show and video backdrop were really coming into effect. Slash picked up his twin necked guitar whilst Rose donned a camouflage suit and hat for ‘Civil War’, which highlighted the conflict in Ukraine during the intro. The apocalyptic video backdrop was rather striking, and it’s a track that seems ever more relevant in the present day. Anyone looking at their watch would have worked out that the show was heading into the home straight at this point, with a host of fan favourites yet to make an appearance. First up, there were the band introductions and a lengthy solo spot for Slash, but one that was richly deserved. Pretty much every one knows ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ and as those unmistakable opening notes rung out after Slash’s moment in the spotlight, the hands went up and the audience yelled their approval. People were singing loudly, and it was great to see young and old joining in with Rose, especially for the chorus and the “oooo, oooo” parts. The vocalist then took his place behind the large piano, and with a beautiful stormy backdrop, he delivered the opening intro to the wonderful ‘November Rain’. I have always adored that song and it seemed many in the audience did as well with the voices raised high. The solo soared out across the audience and it was a “raising the hairs on your arm” moment. Watching two legends in tandem when the song’s tempo lifts in the latter half was something that I think many people will remember. They maintained the mellow moment by following it up with ‘Patience’. As McKagan and Slash sat with acoustic guitars, Rose wandered from one side of the stage to the other as he serenaded the audience.

Following a thundering ‘Coma’, something happened to me personally that will stick with me forever. I hope no-one will think me self-indulgent to put this in a paragraph on its own. If you regularly read our live reviews, you will know that I lost my mother back in late 2019 and went to see one of her favourite artists, Glenn Hughes, just a few days later. A song she always loved was GN’R’s version of Bob Dylan’s ‘Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door’, particularly the live version from the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert (which she went and bought). It was a song that was always going to make an appearance and yet I never thought about it until Slash strummed the opening notes on his twin guitar. I think I got about three lines in before the tears began to flow. Even now, just writing about it, the eyes are getting watery. As Fortus’ solo played, I know the hardest part, her favourite bit, was coming. The emotion I felt during the “Knock, knock, knockin’ on heaven’s door” call and respond section was almost overwhelming. I looked up at the sky as I joined in with the whole crowd. For that reason, it was my moment of the concert and I think she would have enjoyed it as well.

I had just a few minutes to compose myself before the sound of a train horn erupted and the tempo fired up for ‘Nightrain’. Rose belted out the vocals and stamped around the stage, while the crowd were singing in unison and the backdrop showcased a neon set of tracks. It was entertaining to watch Fortus and Slash mid-stage during the solo. There wasn’t much time left, and I was pleased when Rose stated that they were going to “forgo leaving the stage, and coming back and doing encores… and all of that kind of showbiz stuff.” It often costs a song and it was nice to see a band acknowledge that. The penultimate offering was ‘Don’t Cry’, which felt kind of apt given my emotional experience a few songs earlier. Despite being a slower cut, it fitted in perfectly near the end. The hands were up and swaying, and many around me were singing along. After nearly three hours and twenty-six songs, there was only one way they could end the show. Having thanked the crowd, Slash stood centre stage and delivered the opening bars of ‘Paradise City’. The hands were clapping in time to the beat and the audience yelled the lyrics for all they were worth. Running around like a lunatic with mic-stand in hand, it looked like Rose was having as much fun as the 65,000 people watching. It was everything I hoped for after all these years of listening to it on the album. Just to top it off, and to ginormous applause, Slash flung out several plectrums and then did a hand-stand in the middle of the stage.

Tonight’s show was simply excellent. It wasn’t the sort of visual feast that I witnessed last weekend, but then maybe we were a bit spoilt by the amazing theatrics of P!NK’s concert. As I mentioned earlier, this is not the Axl Rose of twenty to thirty years ago, and no one should expect him to be. What was noticeable was how relaxed, happy and contented the whole band seemed, especially their frontman. After everything that has happened, they all appear to be in a very happy place. I doubt many people would have left thinking they were sad the band didn’t play “x song” because they pretty much covered everything. Slash was magnificent throughout the whole concert and it is great to have finally seen him and the rest of GN’R on the live stage. I have not seen them before, so I can’t comment on how they compared. What I can tell you is that a very good friend also attended the concert, this being the sixth time she’d seen Guns N’ Roses, and she told me this was by far her favourite. The set was maybe a little long and could have been trimmed by a few covers and lesser known cuts, but that is a minor quibble. I had a great time tonight, to the extent I hope I will see them again on the next tour. Hopefully, next time, I will be a little more prepared for ‘Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door’!

NB – I want to once again add massive thanks to the fabulous Outside.Org team for arranging this for me.


Review: Dave Scott / Photos: Guilherme Nunes Cunha Neto


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