Guns N’ Roses: Slash recalls “surreal” reunion show

Slash and Axl onstage
Slash and Axl onstage (Image credit: Getty)

Slash has called his first reunion show with Guns N’ Roses and Axl Rose a “surreal” moment.

The guitarist left GNR back in 1996 but hooked up with vocalist Rose and bassist Duff McKagan again in 2015 – and they’ve been together ever since on their successful Not In This Lifetime tour.

And Slash has also looked back on the phone call between him and Rose which kickstarted the reunion.

Slash tells Nikki Sixx on his Sixx Sense radio show (via UCR): “It was on the phone and then we got together when I got back into town.

“I was on the road in Peru. I remember it specifically. It was very cathartic to physically talk because there’s a bond that you have – and then what happens is the bond makes the negative side of that much worse, because you’re forced out of it.

“There was a lot of bad feelings from the breakup all throughout that 20 years. But there’s also a part of you that’s, like, in a marriage, where you love somebody. So there’s always that feeling, but then there’s all this negative stuff.”

Slash continues: “There was so much stuff perpetuated in the media, and it was just blown out of proportion. So when he and I talked for the first time, it was really, really cool.”

The guitarist calls their first performance together after 20 years at the Troubadour in Los Angeles “very surreal” and adds: “It just snowballed from there. If you had talked to me 20 months ago, I would have said, ‘No fucking way. It’s never going to happen.’ But it did, and it was fucking awesome.

“There were these moments on stage where you sort of take stock of where you are at the moment and go, ‘Wow, this is a trip.’ There was something about this particular tour that didn’t take me back to the last tour in the 90s – it was completely unique in its own new thing. Same guys, same songs – but a whole different experience.”

Guns N’ Roses will headline this year’s Download festival in the UK and will play other dates across Europe this summer.

Find a full list of tour dates below.

Guns N’ Roses 2018 Not In This Lifetime tour dates

Jun 03: Berlin Olympiastadion, Germany
Jun 06: Odense Dyrskueplausen, Denmark
Jun 09: Donington Download Festival, UK
Jun 12: Gelsenkirchen Veltins-Arena, Germany
Jun 18: Paris Download Festival, France
Jun 25: Mannheim Maimarktgelane, Germany
Jun 26: Bordeaux Matmut Stadium, France
Jun 29: Madrid Download Festival, Spain
Jul 05: Nijmegen Goffertpark, Netherlands
Jul 07: Leipzig Festwiese, Germany
Jul 09: Chorzoq Stadion Slaski, Poland
Jul 13: Moscow Spartak Otkritie, Russia
Jul 16: Tallinn Song Festival Grounds, Estonia
Jul 19: Oslo Valle Hovin, Norway
Jul 21: Gothenburg Ullevi Stadium, Sweden

2017: The year Guns N' Roses went head to head with British fans

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent more than 30 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott maintains Louder’s buyer’s guides, scouts out the best deals for music fans and reviews headphones, speakers, books and more. He's written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog and has previous written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.