Appetite for Destruction review by Guns N' Roses

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Released: Oct 27, 1987
  • Sound: 10
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 9 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.4 (451 votes)
Guns N' Roses: Appetite for Destruction
1

Sound — 10
This record is the debut album of a band with an original style and a band to be one of the most influential hard rock acts of all time. This five young guys came to be one of the most skilled ensembles of all time bringing in their debut album an amazing sound and a great rawness to their music. With their skilled musicianship they managed to create very high quality Hard Rock, putting themselves to the side of Hard Rock giants as Led Zeppelin and AcDc. In my opinion, Drumming has always been a down part of Guns and Roses playing. There are so many things you can do with the drums to create a rhythm and a mood to the song, I think that Steve Adler keeps it simple and plays a steady rhythm with simple repetitive fills, he is a good player though. On bass, Duff McKagan does a very good job, his best performances are Pardise City, Rocket Queen, and Specially Sweet Child O Mine, in the intro, here you can hear what I mean when I say that bass players shoulll create a mood with a high melody. Axl Rose is an amazing singer, he screams, he has a wide scale, he can sing very high and has a great deep low voice, he hums and makes noises accurately. I really like that he makes all noises that singers do in concert but they record all the noises in the studio. Slash is a great guitar player, he is Top 5 historically or at least Top 10 in most guitar countdowns. Therefore his solos are amazingly complex, he manages to play his scales very fast, do very nice sequences of pull offs and hammer ons, slide with a very nice feel, and bend the strings asses all the way transversally acress the neck. Remarkable performaces include Nightrain, Welcome to The Jungle, Paradise City and specially Sweet Child O Mine. Izzy Stardlin is another great musician, he has a low profile because his job is to play rhythm, not to play solos, so he doesn't get many attention and he gets underrated but he surely knows how to play guitar and most importantly he is one of the main songwriters in the band. One remarkable thing to point out on the performance of these guys is that they as two guitars, don't play the same thing, nor they play a conventional lead rhythm sequence. They play slight variations of the same riff, they might only vary the strumming pattern or the arpeggio sequence. Together they sound as a if they both were playing the same but if you have some stereo headphones you can hear the different parts, and appreciate each player's style on each ear. 01.Welcome To the Jungle: if you're a debuting band, and you're aiming to be a bad ass hard rock band, your album has to start with a guitar playing a strong distorted part introducing a hard song. This song is one of the hardest ever written by Guns N Roses. It has a strong intro followed by a very strong riff and Axl's rose at his fullest. It has a neat chorus. There is a riff variation at the middle of the verses that keeps the strong mood. After the second verse there is a nice short solo followed by another verse. Then there is the bridge with some clean parts giving way to the solo. There are a couple of screams developed by Axl. At the end of the solo Slash plays a nice part with harmonics before playing a nice riff that gives way to the last chorus. 02.It's So Easy: this song starts off with a nice bass part, guitars join in and the song starts with the first verse, here you can appreciate Axl's low voice, the chorus has a very nice riff behind. There are two verse chorus sequences before a nice interlude with some voice harmonies. The interlude gets heavier giving way to the solo. After the solo there is another verse chorus sequence. The nice clean part from the middle is played again; this part is amazing how it grows in rhythm and mood. There is another chorus backed with a very nice chorus. Axl starts screaming it's so easy several times with his high voice and the song ends suddenly. 03.Night Train: there is a special sound in Guns N Roses drumming that sounds like a can, the intro to this song is the first time it is used. The song starts off with the chorus, which has a very nice riff. Then there is a verse chorus sequence played two times. Then the interlude starts with a very strong riff backing up. Then the solo comes in. This is a nice long solo full of emotion. The solo ends and the chorus is played in slow motion, then the bad ass riff is played again followed by an outro solo. There are also some screams by Axl before the songs starts fading out. 04.Out Ta Get Me: this song starts strong with both guitars smashing a riff giving way for the rest of the band a short solo. Then the first verse starts, the bridge is cool, with a very nice riff. The chorus has a nice riff too. Then the pattern is repeated and a solo is played. There is an entire interlude before playing another verse chorus. The outro to this song is a high point for Steve Adler where he actually plays an interesting drum part. 05.Mr. Brownstone: this is just a catchy song. The riffs are heavy but all together sounds very nice. The chorus is very nice and heavy, the bass plays very nicely throughout. The solo is very good too, slash makes it very soulful. The verse chorus sequence repeats to end the song with the main riff, and a nice outro. 06.Paradise City: this song starts off with a neat clean guitar and a chorus chant preparing you for the amazing song that's about to start. In the chant there is a good range of vocal tones heard. This song uses some synthesizers, which personally I would take them away. There is a nice lead in the beginning before a whistle is blown giving way to main riff. The first verse comes in with an amazing guitar job. There is another verse before the first chorus comes in. After another chorus verse sequence the solo starts, the second part of the solo where Axl sing So far away is one of the best by Slash. Then there is a good bridge before there being another chorus. Then the song stops and all hell breaks loose. The guitars start playing really fast, Duff develops a great riff on his bass, Slash makes an outstanding solo and Axl starts singing how he knows to. 07.My Michelle: this song sounds very creepy at first with the arpeggios the melody and the bass. But then it breaks loose in a very strong riff. Axl starts singing very strongly too. The chorus is fast and made for headbanging. In the interlude you can really appreciate Duff's playing. Then there is a solo backed by a very strong riff. The song has another verse chorus part to end with a very fast strong outro. I would've preferred that the spooky part at the beginning would've lasted longer. 08.Think About You: this song is hard but it has a really nice melody. During the chorus there are some amazing arpeggios played that just thrills me. During the solo you get a very classic feel by some claps keeping the rhythm. The outro is also amazing with the arpeggios of the chorus played slowly. 09.Sweet Child O' Mine: all the songs up to this point are amazing but this one is outstanding. This song is just great; it starts clean with the lead part we all know. Duff does a great job in the bass, setting a very nice mood. The clean parts played by the guitars are also very melodic. Axl sings very nicely. The bridge between Chorus and verse has also a very nice lead. The interlude before the solo is just a variation of the chorus. Then Slash brings one of his greatest job. Very melodic at first, Izzy does a great job behind too. Then Slash starts playing an amazing set of pull offs and scales to end with another quiet part where Axl sings where do we go now. Then Slash comes again with the solo and Axl does a good performance with the screams. 10.You're Crazy: this song has a very good acoustic mood. Very bluesy and sort of country. Axl Sings very deeply. You have to listen this song on headphones to really appreciate each guitarist separate lines. Duff also joins in very accurately creating a very nice baseline filling in very accurately in very key points. 11.Anything Goes: this song is full of nice riffs throughout, each player playing different parts all the time. Is another great performance of Duff. Axl performs very good too. There is an extensive use of wah in the solo and actually both guitarist play the solo, they make a conversation sort of solo. The last part is very good with the guitars playing very good riffs. 12.Rocket Queen: to close a record you need a great song, if everyone is willing to do their job correctly there's no reason not to have one. The guitars play good riffs, Duff makes another outstanding job. Steve keeps it simple but he fulfills his job. Axl also sings very good. Half the way through the song the tempo and the entire song changes to a more melodic mood where an amazing solo is played, and the record ends with a new mood and some sort of calmness.

Lyrics — 8
Axl is a well known lyricist and in this record he is still thinking about booze and drugs so his songs are predominated by these themes. He sings strongly showing his wide range. These themes might not be strong and meaningful but the lyrics do express the sentiments. 01.Welcome to The Jungle: this song is about getting to a place where everything is different, where your customs are not their costumes. It is about getting somewhere where temptation is very high and you actually fall into them and you acquire some new costumes. 02.It's So Easy: this song is about how easy it was for them to get laid with almost anyone they wanted. 03.Night Train: this song is the name of a cheap Californian wine, and it is about getting drunk partying and enjoying some prostitutes. 04.Out Ta Get Me: I think this song is telling the cops to come and get them because their lifestyles are illegal starting with the drugs, the prostitutes and probably lots of DUI. 05.Mr. Brownstone: this song clearly is about cocaine. Brownstone is slang for it. You start with a little then the little doesn`t do it so the little gets more and more. I think that who wrote this, I think Slash and Izzy describe an average day in their lives. 06.Paradise City: take me down to the party where the girls are pretty. This song's about partying when you're young, live fast die young. 07.My Michelle: this song is about Axl's friend, it is true everything it says but it gives hope to the girl that her life will improve in spite of her background. 08.Think About You: definitely a love song in their own style. 09.Sweet Child O' Mine: this song might be about a girl that makes Axl feel young and he is in love with her. But it might also be about how Axl making some wrong decisions in his life make him feel his young age where he was still, lets say, pure. 10.You're Crazy: this song is about a girl who only wants dick, the man loves her but she only wants dick, she isn't really in love with him. 11.Anything Goes: this is a song about a depraved guy who wants to have sex with any one, and do any kind of weird fetish. 12.Rocket Queen: a song about having sex, with a prostitute or another foxy lady. It is said that Axl had sex with a prostitute during the recording of the song, not while recording obviously.

Overall Impression — 9
Musically, and counting the voice as a musical instrument, this record is amazing, very skilled musicians. One of the best hard rock acts of all time. The only low point is the song meanings. Party and everything but when you look back, when this guys look back at this record, being sober and knowing that this was not a good point on their lives because they were self destructing, how do you see it? Lyrically they did it better in later material. That the song meanings are not meaningful won't make the lyrics bad. The lyrics rock they make the point and set you in the mood of what the song means so to me these are great lyrics to not that good themes. A must have for any rock fan, because it is the birth of a monster, it's like Kill Em All, Led Zeppelin I or Black Sabbath, it rocks.

14 comments sorted by best / new / date

    98Timberwolf
    guitar_lvr wrote: reading this review is like finding out rosie o'donnel is gay, everyone knos its a good album its just like reasurance.
    Well put! My favorite on this album is Nightrain.
    nofx2greenday
    Best album of the time wish i could have seen them play live welcom to the jungle is my favorite song
    vascoa7x
    This is one of the most overrated albums of all time, but still great though[/quote]overrated? LOOOOOL it sold 38 milion copies ;D, its the debut album that sold more of all time, its not overrated ;Di just bought mine today
    vascoa7x
    98Timberwolf wrote: guitar_lvr wrote: reading this review is like finding out rosie o'donnel is gay, everyone knos its a good album its just like reasurance. Well put! My favorite on this album is Nightrain.
    night train is my fav GNR song , READY TA CRASH N BURN I NEVER LEARN. FUCK YEAHHHHH
    05McDonaldT
    vascoa7x wrote: This is one of the most overrated albums of all time, but still great though
    overrated? LOOOOOL it sold 38 milion copies ;D, its the debut album that sold more of all time, its not overrated ;Di just bought mine today [/quote] please may i correct when you say, "its the debut album that sold more of all time" The correct phrasing is, "It is the biggest selling debut album of all time" please get it right.
    05McDonaldT
    Also, explain to me how it is not overrated, i feel that it is because i think considering how this seems to be hailed as one of the greatest albums of all time, it is really nothing special (with the exception of certain songs)
    the_hoodster
    I think that Outta Get me, Sweet Child and Think About You are probably the worst songs on the album imo. But those songs are very good. Just goes to show how amazing this album actually is!
    MotörHeadFan22
    Too bad they can't get back to this line-up, oh well they're still okay now, but this was they're best album by far, and appetite, is one of the classic albums of the 80's Oh and it's not so much heavy metal as it is Hard Rock
    stevetrooper
    This album is arguably in the top 5 albums OF ALL TIME -it's that important. One cannot argue with Sgt. Peppers being #1 if not just for the concept of it - BUT This album is simply amazing. I've been playing guitar for a long time - i'm an intermediate player, and one will hear new little riffs and sounds each time they listen to it - i've listened to this album well over 500 times since it came out - i was in HS - simply astounding - If 10 is GREAT this album is an easy ten - if you listen to the album alot, you'll find different tracks will become your favorite - I cannot emphasize how important this album is musically - if your a guitar player - you owe it to your self to learn your favorite little riffs - beginner to advanced - learning these riffs will help school you on the Aerosmith/Joe Perry / Slash school of Rock - that is unmistakeably All-American -Saul Hudson is truly one of the greatest rock guitarists America has ever produced....A great riff is under Axl in paradise city where he's singing - "so far... away..." this album ABOUNDS with tasty little guitar nuggets everywhere. Rocket Queen is underrated - nighttrain too -every track front to back is great. Sweet Child was over played on MtV back in the day - but history may prove it to be the "Stairway" of the 80's - check out GnR in their prime in 1988 live @ the ritz on youtube... truly lightning in a bottle as the band never equaled their original line-up, but they were real, and quite possibly one of the greatest bands ever in the history of rock n roll -
    greensmith999
    Slash is NOT overated, AT ALL. AFD IS METAL (origional style metal not 'nu wave' BS) Its definately my favourite album ever, every single track is awesome. Back in black, the black album, led zep III are all in my top 5 but theres tracks on all of those that i prefer to skip. the guy before me hits the nail on the head with the discription. (cept the sgt.peppers bit, no offense to the beatles)
    Funk-E-Munk
    stevetrooper wrote: Saul Hudson is truly one of the greatest rock guitarists America has ever produced
    hes from stoke in england
    audiopainpdd
    ok gnr is not heavy metal. they r rock n roll. and axl does not have a heavy metal voice. he has a rock voice. thats y he fits the band. and metallica is not something to recommend to someone who loves this music. GNR is my 2nd fav. band and i hate metallica. lars ulrichs drum beats on the earlier songs couldnt be any worse then they r. kirk hammett has a wanna be eddie van halen sound like almost everyone except he plays with a heavier sound. thats y slash is so special as a guitarist cuz he is not like evreyone else with his style. and think about you is not a mushy song. its a good song. anything goes is the mushy song of that album which wasnt even supposed to be on that album. it was supposed to be replaced by you could be mine