Guns N' Roses: Appetite For Democracy

A brilliant performance minus the old spark

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This is a superbly filmed concert from an excellent band at the Hard Rock Casino, Las Vegas, mostly playing iconic tunes. So why is it ultimately a little vacuous? The problem is that what made Guns N’ Roses remarkable in the first place has gone.

This is very much about Axl and his backing musicians, albeit augmented by a stageshow that includes explosions, fire towers and girls pole-dancing.

What’s lacking is any interaction onstage, or with the audience: Axl struts around, behaving like a tame panther compared to the menace he used to exude. He barely seems to notice the musicians in the band. And, as good as they are, these guys can’t fill the obvious gaps left by Slash et al.

However, leaving aside comparisons to the past, this is an impressive performance. The band are tight, the classic songs stand up strong; even the collection from Chinese Democracy is bearable. And it’s thoughtfully filmed. As for the bonus interviews, none of the band have anything interesting to say. And Axl is inevitably absent./o:p