6 May 2013

Guns 'n' Roses - The Spaghetti Incident

A lot of the time, cover albums get a bad rep due to a) being nothing more than a stop-gap contract fulfilment  with the record company and b) most of the time, the bands doing the covers usually go for a straightforward rendition without trying something new or coming up with a different interpretation of the song. sure, they may play them in a lower tuning but that doesn't count. This album falls into this exact category but - it's fun!

During the UYI recording sessions, Guns 'n' Roses recorded a selection of punk songs in order to release as an EP. By 1993, it had became a full-blown album. Was this an example of the bloated, excessive mass that was Guns 'n' Roses at the time? Possibly, but it's not like it was an album comprised of half-baked techno trip-hop mixed with rock and powerballads that was recorded with a revolving door of ex-Nine Inch Nails members (That was to come later - about fifteen years later but anyway...). This album was the GnR debut of Gilby Clarke who replaced Izzy Stradlin. It was (I think...) the last thing he recorded with them.

The songs are alright - but as has mentioned, they're just straightforward covers with the usual Mike Clink production job (He's good. Not great or poor, but good). However, the album in a roundabout way, returns to the stripped down and raw sound of  "Appetite For Destruction", albeit with other peoples songs. It's not strictly a punk covers album as the first song is "Since I Don't Have You" by The Skyliners. It's a weird one to open with as it's a 50's ballad (It was in the movie 'American Graffitti') which sounds more like something off 'Grease' than a representation of the 'Most Dangerous Band In The World (TM)'. Luckily, things pick up after that with covers by The Damned ('New Rose'), The Stooges ('Raw Power'), Fear ('I Don't Care About You'), The Dead Boys ('Ain't It Fun'), The Misfits ('Attitude') and a few others but I'm not going through the rest of them. There are a few oddities on here such as the cover of 'Down On The Farm' (UK Subs) where Axl decides to sing in a Cockney accent which sounds more like 'Mary Poppins'-era Dick Van Dyke. It's quite funny. Also, the song 'Buick McKane' (T Rex) is covered - but towards the end, they lauch into the Soundgarden song 'Big Dumb Sex' which means we're essentially going from a glam rock hippie to late 80's grunge. But that's not the worst - after the last song we get the 'secret track' which is a cover of a Charles Manson song called 'Look At Your Game, Girl'. This caused a kick-off amongst the relatives of Manson's victims as well as the band because no-one knew this had been added, other than Axl. It's also the worst song on the album and proof that you shouldn't trust psychotic hippies and their friends who spend too much time on acid, listening to The Beatles.

The best way to approach this is not to think of it too seriously, but rather as a bit of fun. Not much more to say about it however...

6/10 - Now I see where you were going, but not quite there.

Chris J.

You can purchase this album off iTunes.
Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_4_14?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=the%20spaghetti%20incident&sprefix=The+Spaghetti+%2Caps%2C217
Spotify: http://open.spotify.com/album/0SYgpEYJZdh2wMkg8IC9na

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