Concert Review: Guns n’ Roses @ Philips Arena

Axl Rose at Philips Arena. Photo by Allen Ross Thomas

In 2008 Rolling Stone named Axl Rose as one of the “Top 100 Greatest Singers of All Time,” and Wednesday night in Atlanta Axl proved exactly why he made the cut.

Although a little heavier and still doing that same horrific dance he coined in the 80′s, the GNR frontman sounds as good today as he did 20-years ago.

The band took the stage at Philips Arena at 11:00 PM, and during the near 3-hour set they performed most of GNR’s greatest hits, and a number of songs from Axl’s 14-year odyssey, “Chinese Democracy.”

The set opened with an intro and the title track from “Chinese Democracy.” The second song, to my surprise was “Welcome to the Jungle.” Probably the most commercially used song in history, I was sure they would save that song for the encore.

From there they played “It’s So Easy”, “Mr. Brownstone”, “Sorry”, “Rocket Queen” and “Estranged” before moving into Richard Fortus’ guitar solo.  Next up was “Live and Let Die”, and one of the more popular tracks from Chinese Democracy, “This I Love.”

Axl continued to treat the Atlanta crowd to the classic GNR songs, only stopping for the occasional band mate solo, and to tell a few stories. One story in particular he shared with the audience was about his arrest after the band’s last Atlanta show in 1987.

My favorite part of the concert came around the 2-hour mark when a piano was wheeled out onstage. Axl comes out, sits down and proceeds to sing a verse of Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall.” From there he played a medley of Elton John songs and then you recognized the first few bars of “November Rain.”

During the last hour of the set they performed, “Don’t Cry”, “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” and an encore which included, “Madagascar”, “Shackler’s Revenge”, “Patience,” and they closed with “Paradise City.”

Now, if you’re a diehard GNR fan then you’re probably griping about the new lineup, but the new version of Guns N’ Roses  did a good job and you still have Axl. That’s more than enough reason to check out the show.

Leave us a comment letting us know what you thought of this show, any other GNR show or just tell us your favorite, or least favorite, GNR moment.

Guns n’ Roses setlist:

Dexter Intro
Chinese Democracy
Welcome To The Jungle
It’s So Easy
Mr. Brownstone
Rocket Queen
Richard Fortus Guitar Solo
(James Bond Theme)
Live and Let Die
(Paul McCartney & Wings cover)
This I Love
Riff Raff
(AC/DC cover)
My Generation
(The Who cover) (Tommy Stinson lead vocals, with band intros)
Dizzy Reed Piano Solo
(Baba O’ Riley)
Street Of Dreams
You Could Be Mine
DJ Ashba Guitar Solo
(The Ballad of Death)
Sweet Child O’ Mine
Instrumental Jam
(Since I’ve Been Loving You/… more)
Axl Rose Piano Solo
(Someone Saved My Life Tonight/… more)
November Rain
Bumblefoot Guitar Solo
(Pink Panther Theme)
Don’t Cry
Whole Lotta Rosie
(AC/DC cover)
Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door
(Bob Dylan cover)

Shackler’s Revenge
Out Ta Get Me
Paradise City

Check out photos from the concert here.

    • Joe

      Can’t wait until they come to Minneapolis!

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    • Billy

      I was told Axl was off stage every 5 mins. for about 10 mins. Any truth to that?

      • Anonymous

        Billy, Axl would leave almost after every song for about a minute and he would be gone longer during the individual solos. I wondered why he kept leaving but usually he would come back on with a different jacket or accessory of some type. And after running around for that long he was probably a little winded.

        Thanks for the comment.

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