Slash praises Axl Rose for his “phenomenal” stint in AC/DC: “I was blown away”

(Image credit: Lisa Lake - Getty)

Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash has hailed his bandmate for the “phenomenal” job he did fronting AC/DC during Brian Johnson’s absence from the Australian hard rock giants.

Rose confounded all doubters with his powerful performances leading the band in the summer of 2016, and, speaking in the new issue of Classic Rock magazine, Slash is generous in his praise for what his friend achieved.

“I came out to a gig in London, and it was phenomenal,” the guitarist says. “I was blown away, especially when he sang the Bon Scott stuff. That was a very proud moment, actually.”

Asked by Classic Rock writer Paul Elliott if it felt weird seeing Rose fronting another band so soon after GN’R launched their own surprise reunion, the guitarist says, “Not at all. It was AC/DC, man!”

“The fact that he got asked to do that was very cool,” Slash notes. “And he worked his ass off doing it, too. He really adhered to the whole AC/DC regimen and pulled it off.”

“In the moment, when it first came up, it was a little jarring, I have to say,” the guitarist admits. “I was super-proud that he was doing it, but how that was gonna happen and go right into the Guns thing, I really didn’t know. But anyway, it worked out. So it wasn’t like a big deal.”

“In all these years that we’ve been apart, he’s become super-fucking professional. And he’s never missed a beat during this whole time. So it’s been great. There has been a sort of synergy that’s been happening this last six years that we never had in our first incarnation.”

In the same interview, Slash confirmed that there will definitely be a new Guns N’ Roses album from the reformed band.

“There’s new Guns material coming out as we speak,” he says, “and we’ll probably keep putting it out until the entire record’s worth of stuff is done and then put it out solid,” he says. “It’s cool. I’m enjoying working on the stuff and having a good time doing it.”

The new issue of Classic Rock magazine is out now. 

Classic Rock issue 297

(Image credit: Future)
Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.