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RCA (2004)

No doubt many rock fans are aware of this band seeing as it features three ex-Guns N’ Roses members - Slash, Matt Sorum & Duff McKagan plus former Stone Temple Pilots vocalist Scott Weiland and guitarist Dave Kushner (ex-Slash’s Snakepit). In the absence of any new Guns ‘N’ Roses material Velvet Revolver will clean-up sales wise and have done already as the album debuted at number one in the US Billboard charts.

But is the music any good? Well I’ve been playing it a fair few times and have to say I am disappointed as many tracks have the hook filled riffs but Scott Weiland just goes and spoils it all with his shouting vocals. ‘Big Machine’ and ‘Sucker Train Blues’ are very generic sound wise - think Guns ‘N’ Roses doing grunge and with a band with this much expectation behind them they really needed to deliver a classic album.

There are some gems though such as ‘Set Me Free’ (as premiered on the Hulk soundtrack last year) which is a bona fide rock classic in that the chorus just won’t leave your head and the guitar line is highly addictive. The single ‘Slither’ does grow on you and ‘Headspace’ gets the adrenaline flowing.

However, track of the album has to be the closing song ‘Loving The Alien’ where Weiland shows he has gentler vocal delivery and it’s the sort of ballad that Guns ‘N’ Roses did so well. Put this out as a single and it will be forever more appearing on those numerous rock ballad collections for evermore!

Guns N’ Roses fans will love this album especially as Slash has a ball guitar wise but given the promise of this band for me they fail to deliver. Here’s hoping they do another album and either way its bound to be released before ‘Chinese Democracy’ ever is!


Review by Jason Ritchie

Label website

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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