Posted by: markfender | October 15, 2013

Headphone Diaries – September 17, 1991

Well, here’s some crap.

GnR--UseYourIllusion1Guns N Roses
Use Your Illusion I & II

Whenever I think about a band that has gotten far too large for itself, I think of these two albums from GnR. Because we did not deserve two such “masterpieces” on the same week. Nor did we deserve the ridiculously long videos these albums spawned. And we definitely didn’t deserve to hear the long drone of Axl Rose’s voice on “Don’t Cry” fade out for a really long time.

Guns N Roses is not necessarily a terrible band. They’re certainly better musicians than some of the other hair metal bands of the era. I would certainly point to a couple of songs off of Appetite for Destruction as some of the best songs the genre can offer. Axl Rose’s voice is normally annoying, but it works quite well for “Welcome to the Jungle.” And Slash’s guitar work on “Sweet Child O’ Mine” ranks as one of the best riffs from the era.

But Use Your Illusion is terrible. It’s pretty sad when the only songs that get major airplay from a hard rock band are the ballads. And every hair metal band had to have a stupid ballad. But Guns N Roses had to have two, both of which racked up an ungodly number of plays on MTV. The thing I probably hate the most about those songs was that they’re also damned long. Which just makes their terribleness all the more terrible.

I realize mine is the minority opinion, since these albums were beaucoup successful, but, seriously, they’re really bad.

Has it aged well? Judging by the remarkable “success” of Chinese Democracy, the sound of Guns N Roses has not aged well.

Should this go on your iPod? There are only two songs you remember from both these albums. Those are not good odds.

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