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Thread: Van Halen or Guns N' Roses?

  1. #1

    Van Halen or Guns N' Roses?

    Which American hard rock band is better in your book?

  2. #2
    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    Van Halen, and it's not even close.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  3. #3
    Member thedunno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Bails View Post
    Van Halen, and it's not even close.
    +1

  4. #4
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Van Halen's music has stood the test of time and aged far better than GNR's has, IMO. GNR were good for what they were: a louder and more modern, vulgar Aerosmith, and Slash did come up with some nice riffs and solos that still sound good. But there's a pretentiousness to a lot of what followed their debut, and what was once tolerable is nowadays unlistenable ("I don't need your civil wah-oh-war"). Van Halen never pretended to be anything they weren't (I'm talking DLR-era here, they lost me after that) and I can still put on any of their first string of classic party-rock albums and not wince. I don't think the same can be said for hearing Axl Rose 'diss' Bob Guccione Jr. in the middle of a song, or sitting down at a piano for some lighter-waving ballad. And that's not even mentioning the lyrics to One In A Million, which would have had the band 'cancelled' in a heartbeat in today's climate.

    So yeah. I think Slash is the real deal, but band-wise, it's Van Halen all the way.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk

  5. #5
    Not a big fan of either, but I'll take Van Halen over G'n'R any time.
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    Member dropforge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Bails View Post
    Van Halen, and it's not even close.
    This.

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    Member Jerjo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Progatron View Post
    Van Halen's music has stood the test of time and aged far better than GNR's has, IMO. GNR were good for what they were: a louder and more modern, vulgar Aerosmith, and Slash did come up with some nice riffs and solos that still sound good. But there's a pretentiousness to a lot of what followed their debut, and what was once tolerable is nowadays unlistenable ("I don't need your civil wah-oh-war"). Van Halen never pretended to be anything they weren't (I'm talking DLR-era here, they lost me after that) and I can still put on any of their first string of classic party-rock albums and not wince. I don't think the same can be said for hearing Axl Rose 'diss' Bob Guccione Jr. in the middle of a song, or sitting down at a piano for some lighter-waving ballad. And that's not even mentioning the lyrics to One In A Million, which would have had the band 'cancelled' in a heartbeat in today's climate.

    So yeah. I think Slash is the real deal, but band-wise, it's Van Halen all the way.
    Pretty much my feelings as well. Axl really got a big head and ruined what could have been a classic guitar band. Slash was great and Izzy could write. Izzy Stradlin's solo album is pretty damn good if you like that shambling Keith Richards/Ron Wood vibe. But damn, Eddie changed the world.
    I don't like country music, but I don't mean to denigrate those who do. And for the people who like country music, denigrate means 'put down.'- Bob Newhart

  8. #8
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerjo View Post
    Izzy Stradlin's solo album is pretty damn good if you like that shambling Keith Richards/Ron Wood vibe.
    I've never heard that, or the Slash Snakepit albums for that matter. With the overwhelming amount of music out there, and so much of my listening time devoted to jazz and prog, I don't make the time for hard/classic rock much anymore, apart from stuff I already know from my youth (I was 14 when Appetite For Destruction came out and it was pretty much inescapable). I went on a VH binge for a few days after Eddie died, I hadn't listened in a long while, and that was a lot of fun for me. Nostalgic. I don't know if that would happen if I revisited the Use Your Illusions.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk

  9. #9
    Well, I'd like to see some more options, but if that's all that's on offer I'll take Van Halen.

  10. #10
    Van Halen's first three albums and Guns N' Roses debut. Nothing more from both.
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  11. #11
    Van Halen, pre-Hagar.

    Even then, are they hard rock or power pop? Maybe somewhere in the middle.

    Pistols & Posies is grating in so many ways.
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  12. #12
    Man of repute progmatist's Avatar
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    Axl Rose is the same kind of drama queen as Richie Blackmore. The lineup changes alone in G'n'R at best, makes the band sound inconsistent.
    "Well my son, life is like a beanstalk, isn't it?"--Dalai Lama

  13. #13
    ALL ACCESS Gruno's Avatar
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    Van Halen over G'NR, but I never thought to compare the two. I like them both.

  14. #14
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    Although I still consider “Appetite For Destruction” one of the great hard rock albums of all time, I would probably have to go with Van Halen. I never saw Guns live, and only saw Van Halen once. I will say I have gained a lot of respect for Slash over the years. I was never a fan of his Snake Pit band (saw them live once), but for the last decade he has been putting out some great solo albums, the last two with Myles Kennedy on vocals. I saw Slash and this band live in a club a few years ago and the guy was amazing. I also like Duff McKagen’s side project Walking Papers who have put out some good stuff. Getting back to the original question, I guess it still must be Van Halen.

  15. #15
    Moderator Sean's Avatar
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    Van Halen, and it's not even close.

  16. #16
    ALL ACCESS Gruno's Avatar
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    Guns 'N Roses wins on the re-release department! Let's see Van Halen attempt re-releases like this.

    They released a 4CD+1BluRay 12" x 12" box set for Appetite For Destruction. I picked it up direct from their site for the sale price of $49.99



    96-page Hardcover Book with Unreleased Photos from Axl’s Personal Archive and a Bombardment of Memorabilia
    Simulated-Leather Wrapped Slipcase and Book Cover with Embossed GN’R Logos

    4 CDs:
    73 Total Tracks – 49 Tracks Previously Unreleased
    First Ever Album Remaster from Original Analog Tapes
    12 Tracks from B-SIDES N’ EPS Newly Remastered from Original Analog Tapes
    25 Unreleased Recordings from 1986 SOUND CITY SESSION
    2 Unreleased Recordings from Mike Clink Sessions:
    “Shadow Of Your Love” – from December 1986 Mike Clink tryout session
    “Move To The City (1988 Acoustic Version)” – from GN’R LIES sessions

    1 Blu-ray Audio Disc: New 96kHz 24-bit 5.1 Surround Sound Mixes from Original Analog Multi-tracks
    Original Album Mixed by Elliot Scheiner
    5 Bonus Tracks Mixed by Elliot Scheiner & Frank Filipetti
    All songs feature brand new animations
    4 Original Music Videos in 5.1
    Unreleased 1989 “It’s So Easy” Video in 5.1

    5 Previously Unseen Band Member Lithos
    “Welcome To The Jungle” Video Invite Flyer – Originally Drawn by Slash
    Robert Williams Painting Litho 12”x24”
    Temporary Band Member Tattoos
    3 Replica Ticket Stubs
    1 Wall Poster 24”x36”

  17. #17
    Banned Dave (in MA)'s Avatar
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    I change the station faster for the latter.

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    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    I can see Wolfgang and Alex doing some special things with the Van Halen catalog.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by thedunno View Post
    +1
    ×2
    Confirmed Bachelors: the dramedy hit of 1883...

  20. #20
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spacefreak View Post
    Van Halen's first three albums and Guns N' Roses debut. Nothing more from both.
    I like the part where Icarus hijacks the Little Red Hen.

    http://www.discogs.com/user/moecurlythanu/collection

  21. #21
    Van Halen: redefined just about everything about hard rock guitar, not just the actual playing but even the gear themselves. For the first since the 50's, guitarists were suddenly clamoring for single pickup guitars, while others were dropping Floyd Rose tremolos and humbuckers into their Strats (Eddie wasn't the first guitarist to slap a Gibson humbucker on a Fender, but he sure made it popular). Everyone wanted an amp like Eddie's (which we eventually found was just off the shelf late 60's Marshall, contrary to the tall tells Eddie was telling in interviews at the time). You've got at least solid 7 albums of great rock music, all of which went platinum. Yeah, I know a lot people don't dig Diver Down, but I like it for what it is. Also, whether you like it or not (and I gather a lot of people didn't), things like Dancin' In The Streets, 1984 itself, Jump and I'll Wait were innovative, because no one had ever used synths like that in a hard rock band.

    Guns N Roses: Good rock n roll band, but they didn't really define anything, did they? There's two points one could make for them:

    1. They sort of brought the whole power ballad thing to it's apex. I mean, just having a power ballad, but an epic power ballad, ya know, like a teenage Axl's sitting there listening to A Night At The Opera, and thinking, "Someday, I'm gonna write a bigger, more over the top song than Bohemian Rhapsody", and he kinda did that with things like November Rain and Estranged. Or at least that's always been my take on it.

    2. One word: Slash. In a sea of shredders trying to break land speed records with their fingers, Slash brought that bluesier sort of Page/Perry/Beck/Clapton kind of approach to playing back. As Kirk Hammett once put it, it was "total blues box city", but at the time, it stood out. And Slash also once of the first guys to bring the wah wah pedal too.

    Beyond that they were just another rock n roll band. A good rock n roll band, but with good songwriting and everything, but there wasn't anything really that distinct.

    And whereas some of those Roth era albums were cut in a matter of weeks (I can't remember which one Eddie said was done in only two or three weeks, insisting that if you took longer than that, you're just being self indulgent), how frelling long did it take Axl to make Chinese Democracy?! Wikipedia says he spent 10 years making it. I remember not long before it came out, reading an article that questioned whether Geffen would ever be able to recoup their investment on that record, given that it would have had to sell like Thriller to get them into the black. And I'm pretty sure it didn't. Even Tom Scholz and Def Leppard took less time to get the job done.

    Hell, it took them 4 years to get the Use Your Illusions album out to the public, and evne though there's something like 4 LP's worth of music there (which is about what a 70's era band would have done during that time frame), it's debatable how much of it actually top drawer stuff. I'll certainly agree that Get In The Ring was a pretty stupid song. Any song that's "answering the critics" is gonna be stupid, but then to stick that idiotic spoken word thing, that was like "How badly do you want to derail your own career, buddy?", Back Off Bitch is another one that strikes me as a throwaway. My World was Axl trying to prove he could rap. And I'll take Heaven's version of Knocking On Heaven's Door over the GNR take any and every day of the week.

    But I liked You Could Be Mine, Civil War (Axl's Ethel Merman-isms during the chorus notwithstanding), Estranged, November Rain, Don't Cry, In The Garden, Next Door To Hell, Coma, and there's probably a few others I'm forgetting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    Not a big fan of either, but I'll take Van Halen over G'n'R any time.
    Literally was the exact answer I was about to give!

  23. #23
    Outraged bystander markwoll's Avatar
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    Welcome to the Jungle is a great toon, thats about all GnR has for me.
    VH has at least a dozen of equal stature.
    VH wins by a knockout.
    "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it."
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    [QUOTE=Dave (in MA);1020506]I change the station faster for the latter.[/QUOTE]

    Amen, er, I mean awomen, or whatever is permissible today.

    Actually, liked blasting VH's songs driving down the highway and at poolside in the late 70's/early 80's. Some of it still sounds okay today but it has been overplayed to the point of ad nauseum.

    G'NR never did it for me on any substantive level. "November Rain" was a stand out amongst the debris.

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Progatron View Post
    Van Halen's music has stood the test of time and aged far better than GNR's has, IMO.
    This is the bottom line for me.

    The first four VH albums are sort of their own genre and still sound great. I hear VH as an evolution of the "Southern California Sound" that traces back directly to the Beach Boys. Those harmonies are a direct lineage.

    The first GNR album is a great raw hard rock record, but it's also become a bit of a period piece despite being influential. The once-shocking lyrics and attitude now seem mundane and childish. And while I appreciate Axl's desire to grow as an artist, the subsequent albums displayed the limitations of his/their talent and the vastness of his ego.

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