Tuesday, 28 February 2012

CD Review: "The Spaghetti Incident?", by Guns N' Roses (1993)

With original material slow in coming, Guns N' Roses attempt another cash-grab with an album of covers. This proved to be the band's final studio offering prior to the original line-up fragmenting entirely.

As is typical with cover albums, "The Spaghetti Incident?" is a mixed bag of the good, the unusual and the filler. By far the best thing on the CD is Hair Of The Dog, G N' R ever so briefly rediscovering their sleazy soul to give the Nazareth classic an appreciated edge, Slash leading the charge with an effortless rendition of the killer riff.

A trio of more aggressive and piss-filled punk tunes add some quality to the album. The U.K. Subs' Down On The Farm allows Axl to relive the bleak days of his childhood, and he gives the song plenty of personality while Slash wails away with a skill that the punk pioneers could have only dreamed of. Ain't It Fun, originally by American punk outfit The Dead Boys, builds effectively to a satisfying cacophony of noise, Matt Sorum delivering one of his more pronounced performances behind the drum kit. And finally the medley of Buick Makane (Big Dumb Sex) cleverly combines T. Rex with Soundgarden to good effect.

Most of the other tracks on "The Spaghetti Incident?" vary between interesting and mundane, with value limited by weak source material, uninspired interpretation, listless delivery or all three.

Hidden at the end of the album is a cover of Charles Manson's I Don't Care About You, Axl insisting on including it, doubtless to cash in on the controversy of interpreting the music of a notorious criminal. It's a sad ending to the recording career of a band that could have been a contender, but proved to be mostly a flash in the pan.


Matt Sorum - Drums
Duff McKagan - Bass
Gilby Clarke - Guitar
Axl Rose - Vocals
Slash - Guitar
Dizzy Reed -Keyboards

Songlist (ratings out of 10):

1. Since I Don't Have You - 7
2. New Rose - 7
3. Down On The Farm - 9
4. Human Being - 7
5. Raw Power - 7
6. Ain't It Fun - 9
7. Buick Makane - 9
8. Hair Of The Dog - 10
9. Attitude - 6
10. Black Leather - 8
11. You Can't Put Your Arms Around A Memory - 6
12. I Don't Care About You - 7

Average: 7.67

Produced by Mike Clink and Guns N' Roses.
Mixed by Bill Price. Mastered by George Marino.

All Ace Black Blog Heavy Metal CD Reviews are here.

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