Slash feat. Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators 2012 concert

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This is my second time seeing Slash, the last time being at the Soundwave Festival. This concert was a headlining set, unlike the short time Slash was given at Soundwave. I don’t think Slash is a musician that likes either spectacle or change. Slash’s new album supports this premise, and you can read my review of it here. https://stefanb33.wordpress.com/2012/08/07/slash-apocalyptic-love-and-slash-360-app/ The album doesn’t break new ground for Slash’s musicianship and only contains one song I would describe as spectacular. In a way, this argument also describes Slash’s concerts. It doesn’t try too hard; it’s just there to rock the audience. While playing a lot of songs from his second solo album Apocalyptic Love and a fair few from its predecessor, Slash also played 9 songs from previous bands he’s been in. He actually has about 10 studio albums in total to select songs from.

Good choice for an opener, “Halo” set the mood. As one of the few really good songs on the album, it got my blood pumping. It did sound exactly like the album version. I felt privileged hearing “Ghost”. Even though I had already heard it at Soundwave, I’m glad this song has become a regular in Slash’s sets because it sounded fantastic once again.

“Standing in the Sun”, a mediocre track and an even worse choice for a single, definitely sounded a lot better live. The lead single played late in the set, “You’re A Lie”, actually sounded fantastic and a lot more energetic than the version on the album. The next song was “Mr. Brownstone”, a song off the first Guns N’ Roses album, Appetite for Destruction. As you’d expect, the crowd went crazy with vocalist Myles Kennedy giving plenty of chances to sing along.

“Not For Me”, once again from the new album, was boring enough for me finally give in to my urge to pee, though regrettably I missed “Doctor Alibi” from Slash which was song by bass player Todd Ferns, who also sang the next song “You’re Crazy”, another GNR song.

“Starlight” was performed really well and the crowd even took out their lighters which I didn’t expect, because I never really thought of that song as a ballad. I never considered that song a favourite of Slash but Kennedy’s vocals were fantastic.

Next up was some solos and jamming, and at times I think it went a little long, though I still love Slash’s solos. “Anastasia” and especially “Sweet Child o’ Mine” featured awesome the riffs that we’ve grown to love from this guitarist.

Something very cool that came up was during the encore. Angry Anderson of the Australian band Rose Tattoo, who had opened for Slash that night, showed up to play the Rose Tattoo song “Nice Boys”. Rose Tattoo has some history with Slash as well as Guns N’ Roses. Rose Tattoo had not only inspired Guns N’ Roses, they even reformed after a period of inactivity to support GNR on their Australian tour in 1993 at request of the Gunners. The original line-up of GNRs had a cover of “Nice Boys” featured on the G N’ R Lies album, so it made sense for Slash to say how it was honour to play with Angry Anderson and tour with Rose Tattoo.

Ending with the outstanding “Paradise City”, one of my favourite GNRs song was a great way to finish up. It also had some confetti blown in front of the stage, the closest thing to a gimmick in Slash’s show.

Overall, a pretty good concert that was worth the $90 or so that I paid for it, which is cheaper than a lot of the other international acts I’ve seen. Keeping this in mind, the lower budget certainly shows. There were no big screens, no smoke machines, no special effects and no theatrics. The confetti at the end was kind of cool. You don’t pay for a spectacular show, you pay for a rock concert, nothing more, nothing less. The musicianship here is excellent, with all members of the band at the top of their game. A problem was the mediocre tracks played from the new album and sometimes the solos felt a bit overlong. Slash is certainly worth seeing if you’re a fan of his work over the years. I give this concert 3.5/5. This rating wasn’t affected by Rose Tattoo’s opening set, or by “Doctor Alibi”, which I missed. Setlist below, from setlist.fm, with my favourite performances in bold http://www.setlist.fm/setlist/slash/2012/hisense-arena-melbourne-australia-3dc7137.html.

 1.    Halo

2.    Nightrain

(Guns N’ Roses song)

3.    Ghost 

4.    Standing in the Sun

5.    Back From Cali

6.    Mr. Brownstone 

(Guns N’ Roses song)

7.    Beggars & Hangers-On

(Slash’s Snakepit song)

8.    Rocket Queen 

(Guns N’ Roses song)

9.    Not for Me

10. Doctor Alibi

(Todd Kerns on lead vocals)

11. You’re Crazy

(Guns N’ Roses song) (Todd Kerns on lead vocals)

12. Crazy Life

13. No More Heroes

14. Starlight 

15. Blues Jam

16. Guitar Solo / Godfather Theme

17. Anastasia 

18. Sweet Child O’ Mine 

(Guns N’ Roses song)

19. You’re a Lie 

20. Slither 

(Velvet Revolver song)

21. Encore:

21. Nice Boys 

(Rose Tattoo cover) (with Angry Anderson)

22. Paradise City 

(Guns N’ Roses song)

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