Edited by Brett Buchanan
If you type into Google: ‘What is the best-selling debut album of all time in the United States,’ Guns N’ Roses’ Appetite for Destruction comes up as the result. Two years of making their name on the Sunset Strip in the mid-80’s paid off in the form of selling 18 million copies in the U.S. alone.
Thirty years later and it is still one of the most popular rock and roll records of all time. With its 7 singles and huge commercial success, Appetite tends to be fans’ favorite GNR album. July 21st will be its 30th birthday, and GNR kick off their latest tour in St. Louis six days later. While GNR haven’t announced official plans to commemorate the anniversary, Steven Adler hinted the manager Fernando Lebeis has ‘ideas’ in a recent interview. Let’s take a look at some of the things GNR could do to mark the 30th anniversary of Appetite for Destruction.
It wouldn’t be an Appetite celebration if it didn’t include the Appetite lineup. Izzy Stradlin was a key component to the band, as he co-wrote many songs with Axl Rose. Additionally, he added a Keith Richards-esque component of cool to the band. Though members have stated that current rhythm-guitar player Richard Fortus shares similarities with Izzy, he’s just not Izzy.
Again, it is not Appetite without Steven Adler. In many interviews, he has expressed that regardless of what happened in the past, he will always see the other four members of the original lineup as his brothers, and that they created something special that can never be done again. So, Steven’s past mishaps should be forgiven, and he should be at every show. Even if he is only allowed to play Appetite songs, he deserves to be the drummer playing them. He was brought to select shows on the 2016 tour, but we want him at every single one.
What would REALLY be cool is if GNR played Appetite from start to finish…but that’s just wishful thinking. While they do already typically play “It’s So Easy,” “Welcome to the Jungle,” “Mr. Brownstone,” “Nightrain,” “Sweet Child O’ Mine,” “Paradise City,” and “Rocket Queen,” some of us still have an ‘appetite’ for more. “Out Ta Get Me” and “My Michelle” were usually the songs Steven Adler played when he was brought on stage last year, but they should be permanently added to the setlist. While we could do without tracks like “You’re Crazy” and “Anything Goes,” I think many of us can agree we would still rather hear those than “The Seeker.”
I wasn’t even alive for the ‘Use Your Illusion’ Tour in the early 90’s, but I have watched several of the shows start to finish on YouTube and video. The ‘Not In This Lifetime’ Tour almost mirrors these performances. Granted, they only have so many songs from the records they put out, but Slash doing “The Godfather Theme Song” and Duff singing a song off of The Spaghetti Incident? all happened back then too, leading to a predictable setlist. Obviously the addition of material off Chinese Democracy adds a nice new element to the show, but more performances of their own material like ”Used to Love Her” and playing BOTH “Don’t Cry” and “Patience” in the encore would please fans much more than the covers and instrumentals. It is their reunion tour, but sometimes it seems more like a continuation of the one they were on 24 years ago. By no means is this a complaint, because I am extremely grateful that Guns N’ Roses have reunited, but it would be great to see more of an emphasis on their own material this summer, especially since it’s been thirty years of Appetite.