Words by: Robert Sutton
Images by: Robert Sutton Photography
The mighty Guns n’ Roses ‘Not In This Lifetime’ tour finally arrived in London for two nights at the London Stadium on the 16th and 17th of June where Axl Rose, Slash, and Duff McKagan played in London together for the first time in about 20 years. The ongoing tour has seen the band perform over 100 times so far and has grossed over $230 Million. It was even reported that it has made the band the twelfth largest economy in the world!!.
Support for the evening was from ‘Tyler Bryant and the Shakedown’ and ‘The Kills’.
Tyler Bryant and The Shakedown: A band that I had heard of, but had not seen before. They had also been the support act for Axl/DC last year. This four piece band is from Nashville, Tennessee and opened the evening’s performance with some really great rock/hard rock songs that really did get the crowd in the right mood for the headliners later on. What a great choice for the opening act and one that I hope the band can capitalize on to further their career.
The Kills: Not helped by the fact that they had some technical issues before they started their set, this American/English duo did seem to struggle to keep the audience with them and whilst they did have a few loyal fans in the crowd a lot of the other people seemed to wander away to the bar during their set. I think they did enjoy the set themselves, but unfortunately, they didn’t do anything for me and put a bit of a dampener on things after such a great start from Tyler Bryant.
Guns n’ Roses: Well we had all been waiting a very long time for this show to happen and now it was finally here I was just hoping that it would be just as brilliant as it had been billed to be and was not going to end up being an Axl train wreck…
For this tour, the band opened their three-hour set with ‘It’s So Easy’ and then followed this with their more usual opening songs of ‘Mr. Brownstone’, ‘Chinese Democracy’ and ‘Welcome to the Jungle’. The 80,000 strong crowd seemed to be more interested in giving Axl a hand with the vocals than with crowd surfing or starting a mosh pit..(well at least in the Gold Circle area , where I was..) and that was the way it carried on virtually all night, with the crowd singing their hearts out to most of these iconic songs.
The two huge ‘side of stage’ screens and ‘back of stage’ screen hopefully ensured even those right at the back of the stadium could see all of the action on stage and coupled with a bit of pyro during the performance, some firecracker effects, a curtain of ‘pyro rain’ towards the end of ‘November Rain’ and some confetti cannons just for good measure it all made for one absolutely fantastic show….and one that you could possibly say was a ‘once in a lifetime’ show..
They ended the night with an encore comprising of ‘Black Hole Sun’ (Soundgarden cover), Patience, The Seeker (The Who cover) and Paradise City. To be honest, I’m not sure that the show could have been any better and was certainly well up with my expectations of what I wanted from them, there were no guest appearances at tonight’s show, which if there had been may just have made it a tad more special than it already was.
What an absolutely incredible show it was and one that I am most certainly glad that I went to, but sadly probably one that won’t be repeated..’Not in my lifetime’…