Angus Young joins Guns N’ Roses gig

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THE campaign to reclaim the stadium in the name of rock was boosted by the desperately anticipated return of Guns N’ Roses with very special guest AC/DC legend Angus Young in Sydney on Friday night.

Young joined the band to perform the AC/DC song Whole Lotta Rosie and a mashup of signature riffs.

That mega bonus performance returned the favour Axl Rose extended the Australian band when he filled in for Brian Johnson for the remaining gigs of their Rock Or Bust tour.


media_cameraAxl Rose on stage at the ANZ Stadium, Sydney. Photo: Dylan Robinson

Young pranked the American rockers when they landed in Sydney from their opening gig in Brisbane this week via private jet on Wednesday night.

The band were kept waiting on-board for a “security check”.

Expecting airport officials, Rose and his band mates were greeted by Young wearing a hi-vis vest.

The aptly named Not In This Lifetime tour has reunited the band’s seminal core — Axl Rose, Slash and Duff McKagan — on Australian stages for the first time since the epic Use Your Illusion concerts in 1993.


media_cameraThe band looked happy and healthy at the Sydney gig. Picture: Dylan Robinson

All the bad blood and lawyers’ bills appear to be water under the bridge as the trio and an impressive support cast of musicians reminded us why stadium rock once was everything. Before Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran and Coldplay and One Direction made sports arenas poptastic versus dangerous.

Certainly the rockers once renowned as the most dangerous band in the world don’t scare the proverbial out of us like they used to. They look, well, happy and healthy.

And those among the 50,000 plus crowd in the grandstands were frustrated with sound problems as the wind swirled and Rose’s vocals were lost for the first half-hour.

But once that technical difficulty was sorted, man, what a gig.


media_cameraAfter a well-publicised falling out Axl Rose and Slash are back on tour. Picture: Dylan Robinson

There was not one person in that stadium who did not lose it when the Gunners smashed out that perfect rock song, Sweet Child O’ Mine or Live And Let Die or Civil War or Estranged.

Slash gave us a glorious extended rock guitar solo bonus with Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here which segued into Layla and then the epic November Rain with Rose pounding the piano keys abetted by the weight of his rings bling.


media_cameraSlash treats fans to some of his trademark guitarmanship. Picture: Dylan Robinson

The top-hatted guitar guru and his bassist mate McKagan were given plenty of time to shine with solos when Rose went off stage to change t-shirts and hats.

And no doubt equal shine time was stipulated in the contract.

But it is almost impossible to be cynical about a musical event you feared may never happen in this lifetime, punctuated with the signature fireworks and pyro bombs.


media_cameraFans of Guns N Roses watch the show. Picture: Dylan Robinson

Rose and his band mates were generous entertainers to their legion of true believers — particularly during the call and response of Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door and Patience crowd karaoke — and there seemed to be a genuine camaraderie on stage.

The most obvious takeaway for a crowd who grew up in the halcyon era of 90s stadium rock is you can never go back but you can revisit.

Guns N’ Roses return to ANZ Stadium on Saturday. If you’re lucky, so will Angus Young.

Originally published as Angus Young joins Guns N’ Roses gig



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