- 15 Oct 18
Pulverising riffs from rock icon.
Here it is – the album fans weren’t sure would happen, now that Guns N’ Roses are officially a full-time concern again. Thankfully, Slash – one of the few remaining genuine rock gods – returns under his own banner with Living The Dream, the third such LP to feature singer Myles Kennedy and band The Conspirators.
While it has been thrilling to see Slash playing massive concerts with his old band, and trading licks with gifted guitarist Richard Fortus on that tour, this powerful piece of work confirms his independence. Indeed, it features some of the best stuff Slash has written in years.
Call Of The Wild opens with the familiar, unmistakable sound of that Gold Top Les Paul, with Kennedy bringing a huge amount of immediacy and melody to Slash’s crushing power chords. ‘My Antidode’ nicely (well, nastily) balances the muscular riffing with the singer’s hooky lyricism, making for an exhilarating listen. Amidst the sonic onslaught, there are also some inspired moments of dark balladry, including ‘Lost Inside The Girl’, ‘The One You Loved Is Gone’ and ‘The Great Pretender’.
One of the best aspects of Living The Dream is that it’s not self-consciously either retro or contemporary; it exists firmly in the self-contained Slash-verse. It’s a terrific mix of the guitarist’s familiar reference points: ’70s stadium rock, ’80s Sunset Strip metal, and bratty punk attitude. In the era of the tea-sipping pop star next door, it’s comforting to know there’s still room for rock with serious attitude.