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Bercy Arena - Paris, France
September 13, 2010

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Axl Rose live at Bercy Arena in Paris, France

2010 really is a special year! A few months ago I saw Slash live in concert at the Bataclan and the Hellfest. Now I was seeing Axl Rose with the "new" Guns'n'Roses line-up.

Portrait of Axl Rose live in concert

Well, if Slash played for a sold-out audience at the Bataclan, Axl is selling-out Bercy for the second time in 4 years.

Is it only because he owns the Guns'n'Roses name? Or is it just that his band is a monstrous live act?

I went quite late to the venue even if the organizer said that GnR should be on stage around 9pm.
You all know the statistics: Guns'N'Roses are never ever on time!

Richard Fortus from Guns'n'Roses in Paris

The band started at 10:40 pm. Just an hour and 40 minutes late, which is not that much for Guns'N'Roses standards.

But what was sure is that noone would go home by subway without missing the end of the show. Many people missed the last few songs in order to get a transport back home (or was it because they got bored?...).

Guns'N'Roses started with an energetic version of the song Chinese Democracy, followed by their all-time opening title: Welcome to The Jungle.

Axl Rose from Guns'n'Roses live in Paris

But the sound was very lound and not well balanced.
Of course most people were excited about seeing Axl & friends on stage, but I didn't feel a general euphoria with the opening song. The bad sound didn't help.

After a few songs the sound became better, but still wasn't perfect.

Guns'N'Roses played on a huge stage, with a somptuous light show. There were also fire and pyrotechnics from time to time.

A giant screen on the back of the stage showed videos illustrating the songs. A few of those videos featured the same girl, but none of them featured the band members.
Unlike the latest WASP concert, which featured videos of the old members of the band, this didn't happen here.

Axl Rose from Guns'n'Roses live in Paris

Guns'n'Roses setlist included new and old songs, but unlike a few years ago, there were no surprises. No more My Michelle, no more I Used To Love Her, no more Think About You, no More Down On The Farm and so on.

As usual for the Chinese Democracy Tour, the setlist comprised just a couple of songs from the Use Your Illusion albums. It was centered on Appetite For Destruction, Chinese Democracy, and lots of solos and cover songs.

Moments before Axl fell from Dizzy's grand piano - Guns'n'Roses live in Paris

Well, to be honest there were two surprises. Both of them were cover songs.
First: I didn't expect Axl to play a piano version of the Pink Floyd classic Antother Brick In The Wall.
Second: by the encores the band did a great version of AC/DC's Whole Lotta Rosie.

But I would have prefered songs that I know they rehearsed, like Estranged or Double Talkin' Jive.

Something that made us laugh a lot is that Axl fell down from the piano while the band was playing Street Of Dreams.

Dizzy - Guns'n'Roses live in Paris

But there were also a few boring parts during the set.
First, some of the new songs. This I Love, Sorry and Better were not really the hits of the evening.
A few years ago, when the album Chinese Democracy was not released, very few people knew the new songs, and of course there were very few folks singing them at the gigs.

Now the album is out, but still very few people sings those songs.

DJ Ashba like Slash - Guns'n'Roses live in Paris

All Guns'N'Roses members of every line-up have played individual solos during gigs.
I know this has always been part of a Guns'N'Roses show, but there are too many and this can be boring too.

The cool thing is that solos are played around a well-known theme.
In the old days, Slash's solo used to be buillt around The Godfather's theme.

Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal in Paris- Guns'n'Roses live

Tonight, Bumblefoot played a solo inspired by the Pink Panther, while Richard Fortus got his inspiration from James Bond.

When I saw Guns'N'Roses the last time, Bumblefoot was the new guy.
Now he's a confirmed Guns'N'Roses guitar player, even if most people in the audience don't know anyone elses name but Axl's.

Axl Rose playing November Rain

But some people thought Slash was here tonight. I was approched by a guy on the pit who said "Hey look how Slash plays those licks!"... Wait a minute... Slash left Guns'n'Roses 15 years ago... and it seems like it took all this time to find a replacement.

DJ Ashba from Guns'n'Roses

DJ Ashba is the new Guns'N'Roses guitar-showman.
He's got a lot of Slash: He doesn't have the same hat, but he's got one.
He plays a Gibson Les Paul while smoking a cigarette. And he's got very similar poses.

Did I mentioned how talented he is? This guy is a rythm and melodic genius!

Frank Ferrer with cowboy Axl Rose

Woah! When you look at DJ Ashba, it almost seems like Slash is here.
Knowing Axl, I think it's for sure that Slash won't get back to the band, so this is the closest we can get to Old-School Guns'N'Roses.

We better be used to the new version of the band, who do a great wordk on stage, but still haven't recorded that album that will re-write rock history, as did Appetite For Destruction and Use Your Illusion.

Tommy Stinson from Guns'n'Roses

To sum up, it was a good concert.
Of the 2 and a half hours, there was 1 hour totally amazing. 45 minutes were of an average show, and there were finally 45 boring minutes.

I had fun and I liked the show, but I guess one can expect better from Guns'N'Roses.

Axl Rose Guns'n'Roses

What would happen if the old Guns'n'Roses reunite? There would be euphoria but there would be disapointment too... Look at Chinese Democracy the most long awaited album in rock history. When it finally got to our hands, it wasn't the album we were all expecting.

There are too many expectations on this band.

On a Guns'n'Roses the mucisians will change, but the shows and setlists would be more or less the same.

Axl Rose and DJ Ashba ready to rock - Guns'n'Roses live in Paris

Again, we be better get used to the New Guns'N'Roses and be happy with what we've got, because this reunion will probably never happen...

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Setlist Guns'n'Roses – Bercy Arena - Paris, France – September 13, 2010

01. Intro
02. Chinese Democracy
03. Welcome To The Jungle
04. It's So Easy
05. Mr Brownstone
06. Sorry
-- Solo Richard Fortus based on James Bond Theme --
07. Live and Let Die (Paul McCartney and Wings)
08. This I love
09. Rocket Queen
-- Solo Dizzy Reed --
10. Street of Dreams
11. You Could Be mine
-- Solo DJ Ashba : The Ballad Of Death --
12. Sweet Child O'Mine
-- Piano Solo Axl Rose --
13. Another Brick in the Wall part II (Pink Floyd)
14. November Rain
-- Solo Ron Thal based on The Pink Panther Theme --
15. Better
16- Knockin'On Heaven's Door (Bob Dylan)
17- Shackler's Revenge
18- Don't Cry (Bumblefoot only)
19. Nightrain
20. Madagascar
21. Whole Lotta Rosie (AC/DC)
22. Paradise City

Guns'n'Roses Links:

Guns'n'Roses Website
Guns'n'Roses My Space
Guns'n'Roses T-shirts and Merch at EMP
Guns'n'Roses T-shirts and Merch at
Guns'n'Roses concert tickets
Guns'n'Roses concert tickets at Viagogo
Guns'n'Roses CDs on Amazon.comGuns'n'Roses Amazon
Guns'n'Roses CDs at
Guns'n'Roses on Metal Traveller's Flickr
Guns'n'Roses Amazon
Guns'n'Roses iTunes downloads

Guns'n'Roses Line-up:

Axl Rose – Vocals
Richard Fortus – Guitars
Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal – Guitars
DJ Ashba – Guitars
Tommy Stinson – Bass
Dizzy Reed – Keyboards
Chris Pitman – Keyboards & programming
Frank Ferrer – Drums
Live and Let Die
Bumblefoot and Axl Rose
Axl Rose singing Paradise City
The new Guns'n' Roses Line-up thanks you!
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