Sound — 8
Well to me this album sounds really.. Really over the top sonically. The distortion on the guitars is really digital sounding and there is all kinds of different things going on musically in each and every song. I don't really see this mimicking any particular sound or style, I think it just represents Axl Rose at this point in time (big production). I mean I have to admit at first I really disliked this, but after listening to this album over and over and over again many times I think I can come out of it saying it's definitely good.
Lyrics — 9
I truly believe the lyrics on this album are incredible. The 2 songs that really come to mind lyrically (for me at least) are Catcher in the Rye, and Street of Dreams. Both songs are absolutely fantastic, 10/10 and I think Axl just wrote his heart out. Those two by themselves kind of make up for a few songs I can't stand (lyrically and otherwise) like scraped and shacklers revenge. Otherwise, the lyrics are nothing short of what Axl is capable of. Very very good.
Overall Impression — 7
I'd say its a very good album considering the situation that the band is currently in and has been in for years since the 90's. I wouldn't really bother comparing it to other albums because this one is very unique with all the hype and waiting that came with it. I believe the best songs on it are Catcher in the Rye and Street of Dreams, but I'll list out all the songs so you get a better idea. I love the creativity and the new sound from GNR but I hate how confusing it can be at times. 01.Chinese Democracy: 6/10 decent song. nothing special at all. 02.Shacklers Revenge: 1/10 no idea why this is on the album. 03.Better: pretty good song 7/10 04.Street of Dreams: 10/10 incredible song 05.If the World: 6/10 takes too long to get into it 06.There Was a Time: 7/10 excellent lead guitar work here 07.Catcher in the Rye: 10/10 as close to a perfect song as ive heard 08.Scraped: 3/10 I can see where they were going with it.. but it sucks 09.Rhiad N' the Bedouins: 5/10 Axl's singing on this one is annoying 10.Sorry: 8/10 I need to listen to this song more, because its solid 11.IRS: 9/10 awesome tune, no flaws really in my opinion 12.Madagascar: 8/10 not sure about the MLK thing.. but good song 13.This I Love: 7/10 really, really interesting song. very.. romantic 14.Prostitute: 6/10 nothing really impresses me with this one I think the best way to determine my overall rating is to average things out. So I just added up every rating I gave it, and divided by 16 (sound + lyrics + each song) / 16 comes out to a 6.8 and I agree. So 7 solid album, nothing to write home about however.